Dan Pallotta says in his Ted Talk, “…our generation doesn’t wants its epitaph to be ‘We kept charity overhead low.'”  I think much of what he shares is helpful to advancing how we can all have a greater impact in society.

I have been asked, “What is your overhead?” for nearly 30 years. Pallotta’s talk made me think about what questions I wish got asked more often.   I have listed below the five questions I think every donor ought to ask the charity they care deeply about:

  1. What is the Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG) of your organization?
  2. What does your organization uniquely provide that the world needs?
  3. What impact has your organization made and how do you know?
  4. Other than money, what matters most to you in advancing your mission?
  5. How might I help?

You might have thoughts on other questions, but those five begin a conversation that leads to a real exchange of ideas, values and purpose.  From there, I think we have a better chance at changing the world.

What do you think?

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