Last week, I attended an Association of Fundraising Professionals event called “The Future of Philanthropy and the Impact of AFP.” Andrew Watt, AFP president & CEO, spoke to a packed room at the Wilder Foundation. Some key points I took from his talk:
- The nonprofit sector represents 10% of the workforce and raises over $300 billion annually. We need to do a better job of raising the public profile of the importance, relevance, and value of nonprofits.
- The philanthropic sector needs to develop relationships with legislators and encourage more social investment and build more revenue streams.
- The Charitable Giving Coalition is made up of 60+ organizations and focuses on the charitable tax deduction.
- Businesses are aligning philanthropic goals with business goals. Nonprofits need to think more strategically about relationships. We offer more to the partnership than brand awareness. For example, employee participation / volunteer programs result in an increase in production as shown by the research conducted by Gallup’s Q12 Meta Analysis.
- Nonprofits are operating in a fragmented environment.
- Funding models have permanently changed.
- We must think more about generating revenue rather than traditional fundraising.
- The future is in creativity, vigorous discussion, and questioning.
- The sector needs more awareness and expertise in business development.
- There is a great need for more leadership training.
- The sector needs to change recruiting / human resource practices and parameters in order to increase diversity and inclusivity.
- The U.S. should move towards a more creative-entrepreneurial approach. The philanthropic sectors in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Southeast Asia are leaders in this avenue.
Thanks to AFP for hosting this insightful event!
- Jennifer Pennington, MCF member services fellow