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Prospective Donor Diagnostic

“…be wise as serpents and innocent as doves…” (Matthew 10:16)


1) The vertical axis of the graph indicates the interest or present involvement in the fundraising effort. It may also indicate the level of identification with the mission of the parish or organization. A 10 signifies very high interest, involvement or identification.

2) The horizontal axis of the graph indicates the financial giving capacity. It does not indicate IF they would give. It indicates what they could give if they were highly motivated to do so. A 10 signifies they could give the pace-setting leadership gift that is required for the fundraising effort to be a success.

3) On a separate page list 1-10 the top ten people or couples whose meaningful involvement in the fundraising effort will be necessary for success. They may be potential major contributors or they may be influential in forming community opinion in the parish. Or they could be both. The names on this list do not need to be ranked in terms of importance. Just quickly write down those who immediately come to mind.

4) Select the first name. Referencing the vertical axis estimate their perceived level of interest, involvement and identification with the fundraising effort or the mission of the parish.

5) Referencing the horizontal axis estimate their giving capacity. Do this in light of the potential size of the gift. Remember we are not yet estimating whether they would give or not. We are estimating what they potentially could give if they were highly motivated to do so.

6) Now write #1 on the chart.

7) Continue the process with each of the ten names.

8) Examine your work. How many of the top ten people fall into the “jet stream of fundraising” in the upper right hand corner? These are perceived to have a keen interest in the effort and it is assumed that they have very significant financial capacity.

9) Those in the bottom right hand corner typically includes people of significant wealth who have little or no knowledge or interest in the effort.

10) The upper left hand corner generally includes highly motivated volunteers who are not blessed with significant giving ability.

11) For a more complete picture of the disposition of the community at a later date chart the next 15 names.

Discussion questions and an exercise:

  • What do the results suggest about our readiness to publicly launch the fundraising effort?

  • What could be done to elevate people in the lower right hand corner vertically to the upper right hand corner?

  • How many of our leaders (committee members, parish council, etc.) are in the upper left hand corner?

  • What are limitations of this assessment? What assumptions are being made?

  • How can the accuracy of this graph be improved upon?

  • What do these findings suggest regarding the role of the chairperson of the effort? The role of the priest?

  • Write five concrete actions that might need to be completed before commencing the fundraising effort.


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