How to find amazing fundraising breakthrough innovation

I love big, game-changing ideas. I’ve seen a few of them happen. But they don’t come along very often.

Looking back, you forget something important about those big ideas. Most of them were preceded by big failures. Usually a lot of big failures. Like Thomas Edison’s thousand attempts to create a working lightbulb before he got one to work.

Many of the biggest ideas are really clusters of smaller ideas that come together because someone was willing to keep on trying.

So really, if you want a massive, game-changing breakthrough, one of the best things you can do is focus on the small stuff. Fix the little problems. Pay close attention to the details.

Just getting stuff right may seem a little boring. It’s not going to win you an award or a cover story in the industry press. But getting stuff right will make you better than almost everyone else.

And I can promise you that if you do the small stuff well, you’ll be a lot more likely to get the big stuff right too. Greatness does not exist in a vacuum.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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