Here is a superb article from Fundraising Success on how to foster innovation in fundraising. It was written by Bernard Ross, director of the The Management Centre, a UK-based fundraising consultancy, and Paula Birnbaum Guillet, head of fundraising development and innovation for UNICEF.

A few things I like about this piece …

  • Their discussion of a "tried and true" approach to developing and implementing new ideas: In-house idea generation > Cross-pollination > External sources > Selection > Development > Diffusion and returns
  • A "test" to evaluate how innovative your organization really is, with a discussion of where the process often breaks down (hint: it’s not with identifying a new idea!)
  • Some models for how to structure innovation into your program or organization: Pirates, Skunkworks, Revolution, Dragons Den, Open Source, Functionalize.
  • Interesting case studies.

Too much for me to summarize. Go read it!

Paula and Bernard, you deserve a raise! And thanks to Fundraising Success.

Tom

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