The future of philanthropy revolves around engaging our next generation of donors—Generation Z and Millennials. Understanding how to attract, retain, and grow your young professional pipeline will ensure long-term sustainability for your organization.

When considering how to engage donors across generations, demographics, or backgrounds, it is important to remember that every philanthropist is unique. While we can study giving trends and preferred forms of communication, getting to know your donors at an individual level is essential. Take the time to understand their internal motivations and passions. Consider why they give to your organization over others, what they value, what motivates them, and how they desire to engage with your mission. Understanding your donors puts you on a path toward building strong, personal relationships across generations.

For years, many nonprofits have grappled with effective engagement strategies for young professionals when considering how to build these relationships or who to add to their donor pipeline. Organizations typically assume that given one’s age, young professionals have less money to give to philanthropic causes. However, over the next two decades, we will see an unprecedented shift in wealth from Baby Boomers to Millennials and Generation Z. The projected $30 trillion “great wealth transfer” offers additional reasoning for nonprofits to cultivate strong relationships with this next generation of philanthropists.1 Ahead of this shift, gifts of time and talent are equally important to the success of a nonprofit. The organizations that have taken the time to invest in the younger generations are seeing rewards and a strong pipeline for the future of their organization.

Read the full article about next generation philanthropists by Courtney Labetti and Kaleigh Wagner at Giving USA>