Advancement Resources and the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP) have partnered to conduct an in-depth study into the relationships between development leaders and healthcare executives that lead to success in fundraising. Building up to the release of the full report in early 2018, we will preview key findings from the research.

Key I: Shared Vision and Operational Knowledge

Our research shows that in highly successful relationships, development leadership and executive suite leadership are on the same page about the importance of philanthropy at the institution. When a CEO does not view philanthropy as a significant source of potential funding, the odds of success greatly decrease.

Our CEO at the time wasn’t interested in going out and about in the community. He wasn’t interested in making calls on donors.

— Chief Development Officer


I find that if there is no institutional will—if the philanthropy structure isn’t mandated from the system board and CEO—it’s very difficult to implement.

— Chief Development Officer

At the most successful institutions, there is a reciprocal relationship between development leaders and other executive suite leaders featuring shared knowledge and vision in both directions. In other words, the more operational knowledge that development leaders have, the better able they are to contribute to the institution as a whole and the more respect, recognition and collaboration they ultimately achieve. This is an area in which many CDOs say they stand to improve.

We’re being evaluated every year as leaders in the organization. One of the competencies is about being able to drive business decisions and operational decisions and having an understanding of that. I always rate myself lower on that.

— Chief Development Officer

The full Healthcare Philanthropy Leadership Essentials Report will be available early in 2018. It is our hope that this report will contribute to building CDO-CEO relationships and instill development professionals around the globe with the confidence and knowledge they need to establish and leverage a culture of philanthropy in the executive suite.

If you are one of the leaders that contributed your expertise and experiences to this research, thank you once again for assisting in this vital project that will benefit the entire healthcare philanthropy industry.


Download the Healthcare Philanthropy Leadership Essentials Report

View the webinar Engaged Leaders, Improved Outcomes