Congratulations on bringing home a new development director. Used with care and following directions, you should get many years of terrific benefit.

Please follow these four ownership guidelines to get the most from your investment.

ONE: Your development director requires active partnership. She is not a bounty hunter. She is not a self-driving car. There is no solo mode. To get a good result, be prepared to devote adequate time to forging a close working relationship.

TWO: Train yourself to operate your development director properly. She is a well-crafted instrument that takes focus and time. The latest models offer a new feature called ‘training mode.’ When you  activate ‘training mode’ she will teach you everything you need to know

THREE: Always maintain a safe and healthy environment for your new development director. She requires plenty of resources and collegial relationships with her peers. As the executive director, it’s up to you to provide the tools your development director needs and to maintain a conducive culture for fundraising. Development directors are also vulnerable to abuse by Board members. Please take necessary steps to prevent that.

FOUR: Do not use income projections as a job evaluation tool. We have many reports of this happening. Income projections are just guesses, and your development director is subject to a multitude of factors over which neither you nor she has control. Be aware that this practice can produce negative side effects including resume writing, job hunting, and escape. It also voids your new development director warranty.

A good development director can make a priceless contribution to the health, well-being and prosperity of your organization. Following these simple guidelines will help you get the most from your decision.