A non-profit for Prospect Development professionals. 

New Series: 50 Shades of Prospect Development

Mon, January 29, 2018 8:00 AM | Anonymous member

Created by: Joan Ogwumike, Principle Gifts, Prospect Research Analyst, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Founding Principal, Jstrategies

Apra-IL presents 50 Shades of Prospect Development; a series of illustrations that seek provide a visual depiction of the complexities in all aspects of the Prospect Development field. Each colorful image will represent the emotional ups and downs, moments of pride, successful projects and relationships, conflicts with our co-workers/technology/work-life balance, and/or opportunities for growth we find in our careers.


For our first entry, I’ve created the big picture of Prospect Development shown broken into its composite pieces. Each vibrant puzzle piece represents an aspect of the field and how each area of PD needs one another. Together, they create a larger picture. I hope that you can identify your role(s) in the puzzle. Which piece stands out to you as a primary function of your role? Which piece is your organization lacking? Can Apra-IL help you grow in that area? Let us know by posting below!


  • Mon, January 29, 2018 8:37 AM | Kathryn Thomas
    This is a great graphic - lots of the specifics of our field broken out. My position focuses entirely on prospect identification - finding new prospects from our existing alumni/donor base and beyond. I suppose my position overlaps with several of these puzzle pieces, but I'd say that identification itself could warrant it's own piece!
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  • Mon, January 29, 2018 8:46 AM | A. Tibbs
    I started out at a solo shop, moved briefly to a larger and more structured organization with 3 researchers and 2 people in prospect management, and just returned to a solo shop. It's interesting to look at all the pieces laid out like this and consider which pieces were more valuable/necessary at each place, and how much the structure of the overall development team and leadership perspectives impact how much you can pour into each area. This is great food for thought!
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  • Wed, January 31, 2018 7:47 AM | Anonymous member
    I see myself in many of these pieces but most strongly with prospect management. That is my primary function and I think it’s the most natural thing to represent my role to puzzle pieces because of my interactions across the development office. I am consistently put in an intermediate position in a project or issue and charged with bringing two sides together. My skills are communication and problem solving have only benefitted from being able to take a more holistic perspective to solve problems and facilitate efficiency and effectiveness. My organization is lacking in the strategy piece. We struggle to coordinate our grateful patient feed effectively as well as create and sustain a tiered pipeline. Apra-IL is a great place for me to collaborate with other Chicago/IL healthcare organizations who struggle with similar issues. I think having the benefit of face to face discussions about issues is invaluable.
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