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The Leaky Bucket

What's Wrong With Your Fundraising and How to Fix It

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We’ll look at nine critical aspects of managing the fundraising process, what you, and most nonprofts, are doing wrong, and how you can get on the track to success.

Lesson Summary

Lesson 1 Introduction to the Leaky Bucket

  • What is the Leaky Bucket Assessment Tool
  • What does it show us about fundraising?
  • How can we use this information to fix our fundraising?

Lesson 2 Infrastructure

  • Do you have the right tools in place?
  • How much are you your investing in development?
  • What do you need to do to improve your infrastructure?

Lesson 3 Metrics

  • If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it
  • Leading indicators and trailing indicators
  • What can you measure? What should you measure?

Lesson 4 New Donors

  • Why is acquiring new donors important?
  • Methods to acquire donors
  • How costly is it?

Lesson 5 Staffing the Development Function

  • The development office and non-development staff
  • The role of the board
  • Involving volunteers in development

Lesson 6 Funding Diversification

  • What does your “pie” look like?
  • What types of fundraising are there?
  • How you can change your diversification score

Lesson 7 Keeping Donors: Grants and Special Events

  • What types of grants are available?
  • When is grant funding a good thing, when is it not so good
  • Are your special events really making money?

Lesson 8 Keeping Donors: Personal Solicitation

  • Direct appeals
  • Major Gifts
  • Business fundraising
  • Special appeals

Lesson 9 Keeping Donors: Laws and Ethics

  • What you need to know about federal, state, local laws
  • Ethics in fundraising
  • Providing good stewardship

Lesson 10 Developing a Plan

  • What areas of your bucket are leaking?
  • How can you fix them?
  • Where to start


Your Instructor


Linda Lysakowski
Linda Lysakowski

Linda Lysakowski, ACFRE, is the author of Recruiting and Training Fundraising Volunteers; The Development Plan; Fundraising as a Career: What, Are You Crazy?; Capital Campaigns: Everything You NEED to Know; Are You Ready for a Capital Campaign workbook, Raise More Money from Your Business Community; Raise More Money from Your Business Community—The Workbook; Fundraising for the GENIUS; a contributing author to The Fundraising Feasibility Study—It’s Not About the Money and YOU and Your Nonprofit Board; co-editor of YOU and Your Nonprofit and The Nonprofit Consulting Handbook; and co-author of The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook, The Leaky Bucket: What’s Wrong With Your Fundraising…And How You Can Fix It, Nonprofit Strategic Planning, CharityChannel’s Quick Guide to Creating Your Development Plan, CharityChannel’s Quick Guide to Developing Your Case for Support, and The New Donor. Her latest book, CharityChannel’s Quick Guide to Board Giving will be released this spring. She has also written in the fiction realm, having published The Matriarch and The Face of Jesus. Linda has more than thirty years’ experience in the nonprofit sector and has created dozens of development plans.


Frequently Asked Questions


When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

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