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Analyze Your Fundraising Success with a Development Calendar

Mary Ellen ClarkMary Ellen Clark
Senior Vice President

Whether you use an electronic or paper calendar, the first of the year reminds all of us that it’s time to start “new.” It’s time to start your new Development Calendar or if you do not have this resource in your organization, it’s certainly time to create one. A Development Calendar can include much more than just a list of dates and programs. Consider a calendar that includes:

  • Estimated costs
  • Estimated staff resources
  • Prospects
  • Number of donors
  • Revenue generated
  • Net revenue
The sample Development Calendar below allows you to evaluate the effectiveness of each program from year to year, giving you and your team key data that will direct your goal setting for the next year. While most teams look at year-long goals, the most effective teams also establish weekly and/or monthly goals for their fundraising activities. As you set your annual fundraising goals, you should consider methods, strategies and the resources needed to meet them.
Likely the most difficult portion of this exercise is estimating the necessary human resources. The number of hours required to execute certain programs is relatively predictable. There are others, however, such as some special events, that may change from year to year. Team leaders also share that maintaining and achieving goals with changes in staffing is a management nightmare and their biggest challenge.
This exercise and the examination of year-to-year stats may result in shifting budget resources from one program to another, changing job descriptions or creating new fundraising strategies. Whether the goal is to broaden your donor base, increase your $1,000 gifts, create gift clubs or add a new program, your Development Calendar will offer your team a wealth of information for fundraising planning.

Sample Development Calendar NYCU_January_2015_chartTo further discuss resource development planning and how it will help your organization achieve fundraising success, contact Mary Ellen Clark, Senior Vice President, at 816.237.1999 or at

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