This week I received notification of the final gift from a very faithful ministry partner. She and her husband gave their first gift in October 1993, and gave the same amount 272 months in a row, never missing even once. He passed away about 10 years ago, and she passed away last month.
I can say with some pleasure that this particular donor actually prompted a feature in TNT that I rely on all the time: The “Send thank you for $X (last thank was 19 months ago).”
Until a few years ago, TNT only alerted us when a donor did something unusual, such as above or below their regular gift, missed a gift and/or resumed giving, or gave a first gift. There was no automatic thank for the incredibly faithful partner who always gave the same amount, never missed, and never gave an extra gift.
I had been using TNT for about six years, aggressively recording all of my activity, conscientiously recording all of my thank yous. Then one day I said, “I’m going to spend some time this month writing thank yous to everyone on my team.” I decided to start with the ones who had gone the longest without a thank you (e.g., maybe 10-12 months earlier).
I exported all of my Financial Partners along with the “Last Thank” date field. To my horror, I discovered eight partners who had NO recorded thank you in 6 years! The field was blank! (I will say that some of them at least did have a call or appointment, but no actual written thank you.)
At that point, I developed a personal plan to make sure every partner received a written thank you at least once per year. This actually led to the development of the “thank everyone” feature I mentioned above, which was rolled out in 2007.
Also, since that time, TNT has expanded to allow me to record a THANK for ANY history action (see pic below). And an even more recent task type (“Present”) is also, automatically, a “Thank”, since my giving a present to a partner is an expression of thankfulness on my part.
Expressing gratitude to our partners is probably the most important thing we can do in support development. And I am SO grateful for all of our partners. Thank you Lord!!!