12 Insights into Women’s Philanthropy
by Angela E. White, CFRE, Senior Consultant and CEO, Johnson, Grossnickle and Associates
[Excerpt: Helpful tips to engage women in support of your nonprofit]
I often speak passionately about the importance of broadening our philanthropic initiatives to include women philanthropists and I’d like to share with you what I think are some very important insights into Women’s Philanthropy.
Over the years, my colleagues and I at Johnson, Grossnickle and Associates have developed significant expertise in Women’s Philanthropy issues through our work with the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy in addition to our extensive work with clients.
Our experience has shown us that the ability of women to contribute and make a lasting impact in philanthropic campaigns is often over looked and under-utilized.
After examining the results of the Women Give 2010 report, it is evident that in truth, women are driving many of the philanthropic decisions in this country.
I’d like to share with you 12 helpful insights gleaned from this report and my own experience in Women’s Philanthropy that can help engage women in your cause:
- Women are responsible for 86% of household’s consumer purchasing decisions – they are not a niche market – they are the market.[i]
- Forty-three percent of the nation’s top wealth holders are women.[ii]
- Women control 51%, or $14 trillion, of personal wealth in the U.S. and are expected to control $22 trillion by 2020. With women outliving men by an average of six years, it is more likely they will be making decisions around the transfer of wealth and bequests to charity.[iii]
- Women are the primary breadwinners in 40% of households and hold almost 52% of all management and professional level jobs. [iv] The number of women with six-figure incomes is rising at three times the rate of men.[v]
- Women are increasingly higher educated and now earn more bachelor’s degrees and attend graduate school more often than men. In 2012, 57% of bachelor’s degrees were awarded to women and 63% of master’s degrees.[vi]
- As women’s incomes rise, they are more likely to give to charity than men.[vii]
- Married men and women are more likely to make larger gifts than single men.[viii]
- Single women are more likely to give than single men and more likely to give higher dollar amounts.[ix]
- In 61% of U.S. households, the couple makes their gifting decisions jointly. When it comes to approaching a couple about making a donation, make sure that the woman in the couple is also engaged in the process, and their input is equally valued.[x]
- Never overlook or underestimate the philanthropic potential of female CEOs and small business owner’s. Women own 36% of all non-farm, privately-held businesses.[xi]
- Remember, women’s philanthropic involvement does not mean to exclude men, but rather include women.
- Women want to establish a relationship with organizations they give to, it means more to them than just a business transaction. Make sure you take the time to foster that donor relationship. Women also prioritize their giving to those organizations where they volunteer or are on a board, so it is important to find ways to engage them in your organization.[xii]
Too often women are an untapped resource in philanthropy. It is time nonprofits accept that they simply cannot afford to ignore this influential audience. I hope you will use these tips to better engage women to help you advance your mission.
I’ll be sharing more insights into the power of women’s philanthropy in an upcoming Donor Search Flash Class: Why Women are Driving Charitable Giving in the U.S. Be sure to register to join us for this free webinar on July 12 from 3 – 4 p.m.
[i] Witter, Lisa, Lisa Chen, and Inc. NetLibrary. The She Spot: Why Women Are the Market for Changing the World–and How to Reach Them. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2008.
[ii] Internal Revenue Service, SOI Tax Stats, All Top Wealthholders by Size of Net Worth, 2007.
[iii] O’Conner, Eileen, Family Wealth Advisors Council. Women of Wealth Study. 2012.
[iv] Bureau of Labor Statistics. Women in the Labor Force: A Databook. May 2014.
[v] Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Research. Women Power. 2016.
[vi] U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. 2012.
[vii] Women’s Philanthropy Institute, Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Do Women Give More?. September 2015.
[x] U.S. Trust Bank of America Corporation, Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. The 2014 U.S. Trust Study of High Net Worth Philanthropy.
[xi] National Women’s Business Council Fact Sheet. 2012.
[xii] IUPUI Women’s Philanthropy Institute, Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Where Do Men and Women Give?. September 2015.