Ep 14: Building a Great Development Team – with guest Seth Rosen

nonprofits are messy

This week I’m so pleased to bring back my fundraising genius and associate, Seth Rosen, to discuss the best way to build a great development team.

Whether you are a small shop looking to make your first development hire or a large organization dealing with recruitment and retention of development staff, Seth gives excellent advice on what organizations should look for in a development person and what that person should be looking for from an organization.

Seth lays out the steps for building a happy, productive, and truly great development team. And there’s a little bonus at the end that helps to answer the question, “Is it more important to make your biggest ask or your best ask?”

Seth has more than a decade of experience raising funds for major nonprofits. Prior to joining my team, he was previously in charge of a $30 million budget at the Gay Men’s Health Crisis. Seth has also worked at Planned Parenthood, Amnesty International, New York Law School, and Malaria No More.

Seth is a joyful and enthusiastic fundraiser who really knows his stuff.


  • Two questions you must answer before making your first development hire
  • How do you know if you’ve found “the one”
  • How to set up your new hire to succeed
  • Where to find your next development director
  • What does a great development team look like?
  • Why all nonprofit leaders need to be active on social media
  • How to prepare for a development position interview
  • Preventing turnover in your development department
  • What is more important: your best ask… or your biggest?


Joan Garry
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Joan Garry

Widely known as the "Dear Abby" of nonprofit leadership, Joan works with board and staff as a strategic advisor, crisis manager, change agent and strategic planner. Joan also teaches at the University of Pennsylvania with a focus on nonprofit communications and leadership.
Joan Garry
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  • Marisa Butler

    Does anyone have great advice on what exercised to do to “rally” the troops at our upcoming Development team retreat?

  • Marisa Butler

    Ooops! Exercises.