November 27, 2012

Brand New Philanthropy Resource: Conversations with Remarkable Givers Video Series

By: The Bridgespan Group
In the spirit of this giving season, we’re excited to share with you the launch of Bridgespan’s groundbreaking, free video series, Conversations with Remarkable Givers.

Initiated and led by Bridgespan’s philanthropy experts, Conversations is an unprecedented collection of more than 1,000 short video clips, drawn from over 50 original and private interviews with philanthropists and foundation leaders, including Michael J. Fox, Melinda Gates, Ted Turner, Jennifer and Peter Buffett, David Rubenstein, Jean and Steve Case, Jane Siebels, Darren Walker, and Emmett Carson. Our interviewees discuss important components of philanthropy such as how they involve family and choose which causes to support, and how they work with grantees and measure results.

"While everyone's philanthropic journey will be unique, we can all learn from the experience of others," says Jennifer Buffett, President and Co-chair, NoVo Foundation. Indeed, the perspectives, advice, and lessons learned that our interviewees share in Conversations comprise a new, essential tool for all donors genuinely interested in getting better results from their philanthropy. They reveal what has been inspirational, humbling, and surprising along the way, and what they wished they’d known as a new philanthropist.
  Conversations also "provides a window for nonprofit leaders into the motivation and thinking of donors," says Mario Morino, Co-founder and Chairman, Venture Philanthropy Partners. Nonprofit leaders get a behind-the-scenes view of philanthropists’ most personal reflections and have access to an incredibly valuable set of insights that can boost their ability to build relationships with donors and garner philanthropic support.

What philanthropists share in Conversations

Our interviewees share personal observations about their philanthropic journeys and motivations for giving. They also reveal why it's important to build a “portfolio” of giving, define success, adapt strategy, and measure results. They discuss the advantages of taking risks through innovative ways to drive results for society, and how they've applied their private sector business skills to the social sector. And since failures can provide valuable learning experiences, they talk about their colorful mistakes and the lessons they learned as a result, and share hard-earned advice for new philanthropists. "Having an opportunity to access knowledge and wisdom from others further along in their own journey allows each of us to more effectively and efficiently optimize the change for which we hope to be a part," says Richard Atlas, Co-founding Trustee, The Atlas Family Foundation.

How Conversations is organized

You can search the Conversations with Remarkable Givers video collection by any of the 64 donors. You can also search by these themes or causes:
Themes Causes
Why Give Education
Making Personal Decisions Environment
Pursuing Success Global Giving
Inspirational Wisdom Health
Giving More Than Money Local Philanthropy
Collaborating Society and Culture
Delivering and Measuring Results  

What to Look for Today—and in the Coming Months

Join us now for this inside look at philanthropy, and come back each week as we release additional videos and take a deeper look at each donor's unique philanthropic journey.

Conversations with Remarkable Givers "is a roadmap of shared wisdom, insights, and experiences that will help any would-be philanthropist," says Connie Duckworth, Founder and CEO, ARZU Inc. "It would have certainly kept me out of a few ditches."

We would like to take this opportunity to thank the 64 philanthropists who participated in Conversations with Remarkable Givers and made the project possible. We'd also like to thank the Chronicle of Philanthropy and Bloomberg for sharing information about this landmark philanthropic project.

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