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Daily Nuggets: A For Impact Blog

Planned Giving Training in Three Bullet Points


I want to sound off on planned giving. Nobody is doing enough of it. It always seems like it’s some ‘elusive field’. Like we are ‘waiting to get trained in that area’ or whatever. I want to make this as simple as possible.

Planned giving is just a sale (or another form of a major gift) to a person that wants to help your organization. It is a just a means or a vehicle. Your job is to present the prospect with a wonderful opportunity to change lives, save lives or impact lives.

There are hundreds (probably thousands) of ways to do a planned gift. YOU do not need to know how to do them. Leave that to an insurance agent, a lawyer, a financial planner, etc.

Here is the training … ready?

There are three forms of a planned gift:

  1. Assignment of a life insurance policy.
  2. Bequest (will).
  3. Other

If the prospect wants to assign life insurance he/she can call his or her agent. A simple bequest can be a codicil to a will (just google it). Other includes all those ‘other’ complicated financial arrangements (including gift annuities) that we can pass off to an expert.

Most smaller planned gifts will either involve life insurance or a very simple bequest.

I DON’T believe I’m over simplifying. Your goal is to maximize every relationship at any given time. If you’re meeting with a prospect about a project need today you can also talk about providing TOMORROW in the form of a legacy or planned gift.

My point is that this should be simple and we should be asking nearly everyone for a planned gift commitment. Too often, I believe, individuals and organizations ‘wait’ until they have the necessary training or ‘organizational capacity’. If you get training you will get a thick binder that will sit on the shelf with tons of terms and if you wait you will leave tons of opportunities on the table.

Keep it simple …