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Is fundraising driven by data or people?

In my early years in the industry, it wasn’t uncommon to walk into a meeting and be handed a brick of paperwork, inches thick with data. Numbers and graphs. Spreadsheets and percentages. All useful, but really of no use.

I would go so far as to say that the numbers on those sheets were accurate, informative and, well, yes – totally useless when presented like that.

I’d look around the table, my yawn matched by everyone else’s. It’s not enough, I saw, to present people with enough paperwork to start a bonfire. It needs to be disseminated as well.

Yet, the other side of this conversation doesn’t appeal either – where wishful thinking drives assumptions about where a project should be headed. How far can a project get without the information to drive it forward?

Clearly, this is a numbers game. But, data isn’t enough. Numbers aren’t enough. Communication is also key. Unless we hold these two ideas concurrently, we will lose our focus.

What do you think? Is fundraising driven by data or people?

Jonathan Cook | jonathan@insight-ful.co.uk | +44 (0)7921 250 211

Jonathan @Linkedin | Twitter @jonathan_m_cook

Photo: Flickr/JD Hancock


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