In Transformational Giving (TG), we use the term “champions” to describe individuals who are being coached to full maturity in Christ in relation to the cause. We use the term “partners” to refer to churches and organizations that we’re coaching along the same path.
Tomorrow we’ll have a real-life blueprint from an organization on the edge of the TG partner development frontier.
Today we’re going to take a look at a real-life champion development blueprint, from Spencer Cowan, new development manager at Dare2Share Ministries.
I’ve had the great honor of working with Spencer and D2S on TG for the last two years, and every monthly meeting we have , in addition to being hard work on the edge of TG, is just plain fun.
Take it away, Spence!
The Purpose of the Development Department is to further THE Cause by coaching Champions to understand and carry out what Scripture calls them to do as it relates to THE Cause.
Six Foundational Principles
1. We are not pastors, friends or simply fundraisers to our adult Champions. A friendship can develop along the way but that is not our primary focus. Our ministry is to inspire, coach and unleash Champions to fulfill their God given responsibility in the Great Commission as it relates to mobilizing Christian teenagers. We are God’s gift to the Champion, to help them walk in their ministry as it relates to THE Cause, not to take their ministry away from them.
2. Our role is to appreciate the convictions and values that are already important to the Champion while challenging them to embrace their Biblical responsibility regarding THE Cause (even what might not be appealing to them). As Jesus did with the rich young ruler after hearing how he ‘kept all the commands since his youth’ Jesus responded with the words, “You still lack one thing…” If we are faithful in prayer for each conversation and effectively use Scripture with the Champion the Holy Spirit can convict them and bring them to maturity, that is His job. Our job is to communicate the message clearly as well as to model THE Cause in our own lives.
3. We will focus on those that are being called. Practically that means we will give ourselves more fully to those that are “of us.” Like Jesus describes in the parable of the sower we will be faithful to scatter the seed (i.e. engage all people in conversation about THE Cause) but will seek out and focus on those that Jesus called “good soil where it produced a crop – a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” Our takeaway is to coach those who will understand THE Cause, personalize it and recruit others who will follow their example. In finding and focusing on these people THE Cause will accelerate much quicker.
4. Our fundraising strategy will be transformational not transactional. The end goal is not to ‘cultivate the donor so we can receive income to do ministry’ but is to see a greater number of adult Champions completely transformed by THE Cause. When this is done right the resources will come and will be a testimony to God’s faithfulness to HIS Cause. This attitude will help us keep the motives of our heart directed toward furthering THE Cause THROUGH Champions instead of raising the money to do it ourselves. The example here is the way Jesus ‘coached’ His disciples knowing He would be gone and it would be in their hands (i.e. “feed my sheep”).
5. Even though the way we do fundraising is not transactional we will not be afraid to ask the Champion for a transformational gift. Generous giving towards THE Cause is a key defining mark of a true Champion. We will continue to work together to develop the way we communicate this.
6. Full Networking is a priority. Over the next year we are going to attempt to understand and implement this idea. A full network is one in which Champions are talking to each other, as well as to us. For example, if a Champion mentions a barrier that another Champion has successfully overcame help them connect, instead of helping them yourself.
All of our communication to Champions will become more and more discipleship focused as it relates to THE Cause. As we identify these Champions we are adding them to our ‘team’ (i.e. our notify list) and engaging them in a coaching relationship. An easy formula to remember in personal communication are the following steps (see the Coaching Diagnostic for more detail):
1. Get behind the ‘why’ of their giving
2. Begin a dialogue on THE Cause
3. Get permission to begin a coaching relationship with them