Dream, Act, Achieve Major Giving Coaching Program

(Already know you want in? Click here to Register today)

Ever get a bit discouraged or overwhelmed?
You aren’t alone.



Day in and day out, it’s what I hear. . .

“I have an impossible job. There is never enough time to get it all done.”

“It’s hard to get to major donors when there is so much other work to do.

“I see so many opportunities, but I struggle to just get our event done.”

“I don’t know how to evaluate what to take on or what to say, “No” to and how.

“My Board is really not excited about fundraising.”

“We are spread so thin already and our dollar goals keep going up.”

We are driven to do Good. But we are driven crazy by such full plates!

You are delighted with the difference you make and see so much opportunity to do more . . .

“There is nothing more rewarding for me than the impact of just one new major gift.”

“I know what we could do with more resources.”

“When I can plan, even a bit, it makes such a difference!”

“When I get the right kind of accountability it can actually be fun to see my results.”

“For the first time ever, we are going to plan out our overall advancement work, and stick to that plan!”

And this is your roller-coaster life, isn’t it?

Frustration and joy all rolled into the same day, or perhaps the same hour!

 You are expected to do it all and, by the way, you’d like to have a life too.

I get it. I’ve been there.

I started the development career with a Leading College at a World-Class Research University. My degree is in Natural Sciences – Biochemistry and Animal Science. After graduating, I figured out I really didn’t want to be a veterinarian. Now what?

I was passionate about my College. I became their very first Director of Development

For 23 years, I grew a development program from ground zero to raising multi-millions every year – growing an annual fund, building new facilities, creating endowments, and supporting programs. You name it, I’ve been there. Construction prices escalating far beyond original estimates, changes in research funding for programs leading to crisis fundraising, leadership changes, competition among departments for my time, competition for the ear of the most major donors, money to do mailings and events… But I also cut ribbons at building dedications, watched the magic between scholarship donors and their student recipients, stabilized important programs, experienced 100% faculty giving, and enjoyed the most amazing relationships with scores of generous, successful, fun and visionary people. WOW!

And don’t think BIG University means BIG STAFF. I was the 20th person hired (total – support staff, receptionist, President, fundraisers – everyone) for a 40,000 student institution. So really I was a shop of one for my College. But we grew, to over 350 staff in the 23 years I was there and I managed a bigger and bigger team of folks. Now THAT’S an adventure. Just because you are a successful development professional doesn’t mean you can manage others. But I learned and still learn. My team and I experienced 3 major giving campaigns, the last for $1.8 Billion, exceeding our goal every time.

And soon I was being asked to speak at conferences and create workshops. For 3 years I led all the Newcomers training for CASE – the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education – across the country, recruiting expert faculty to join me. We engaged scores of development professionals, Deans and board members with all types of non-profit missions – far beyond education – at our conferences. I got involved with AFP – the Association of Fundraising Professionals – and served on my local board, earned my CFRE and graduated from the AFP Faculty Teaching Academy. For 22 years I’ve served on the Faculty of the Fundraising and Development for Non-profits Conference here in Madison, WI drawing worldwide attendees. I have challenged and inspired scores of development folks.

And I saw that often we get into this work because of our passion for a cause.

(Then we have to fundraise.)

Sound familiar?

And folks struggle with the fundraising piece.

“People love to give me money.”

When I dug deep into why I had been so successful, and why certain members of my team enjoyed greater success than others, I discovered there is an inner game as well as an outer game to our success. Our mindset and our methods. Our thoughts and our “how to’s.” It’s about our relationship with money as well as our relationship with people. It’s about inner barriers that keep us from succeeding.

And I wanted to help others succeed.

So I launched The Artful Asker LLC in 2010. In 2012 I did a book-signing session at AFP-ICON in Vancouver, BC with my new book, “Empowering Your Board to be Effective Development Ambassadors.” It’s an easy read based on my belief that HOW we THINK and FEEL about raising money, how we take responsibility for our lives and our decisions impacts our fundraising and life success. And, I want you to have BOTH – not either/or.

I’ve done it myself – my largest ask was for $25 million. I’ve taught thousands of development professionals how to speak an ask – the exact words that come out of your mouth, how to create a relationship action plan, and more. I’m also a Certified Leadership Coach. I have an amazing spouse, 3 children, sing in a band and walk almost every day.  I have a huge network, so if there is something I haven’t done, I can always find people who have done it and who are willing to share their advice. And I’ve created board and staff workshops and keynotes and present 20 to 30 times each year.

But, I get frustrated.

Training is great, but it’s not enough.

You are left to figure out how to apply what you’ve learned on your own.

Thousands of nonprofit professionals have attended my webinars and workshops and listened to me speak. I know they are helpful because the reviews are overwhelmingly positive. And, my 3-sentence ask has raised millions. But there’s a problem with training alone.

Figuring out how to take a best practice and make it work in your unique situation can be difficult. We come back to our overflowing plate and physically or electronically “shelve” the materials. I know that taking that next step after getting our training can be challenging because you’ve told me so . . .

“It’s not enough to know the best practices. I need someone to show me how to implement them and how to deal with specific problems within my organization.

“After I get training, I always think, Is this right for us? Should we do this? What’s most important?”

My VIP Coaching is great–but that major investment is open to only 4.

 You need to wait – my VIP clients continue with me and I rarely have an opening.

I love my VIP clients and am honored to work with them. Many continue to re-engage with me because we have more dreams to make real! And the investment makes this something that is a fit for larger organizations. My beginning point is $35,000 and many nonprofit consultants charge much more . . . much, much more. Since launching my business, I’ve consulted with scores of organizations for a period of 6 months to 6 years. My clients are global and I travel to them for VIP Coaching Days on site where we create their best plan for major giving capacity building, staff roles, engaging the board and other volunteers, creating vibrant options for giving and more. Then I help them take responsibility for implementing their plans.

That’s why I am offering this phone YEAR LONG coaching program

– to be able to serve more folks at a more personal level.

What you really need is a coach.

Sometimes you want someone who provides a different perspective. Someone you can bounce ideas off of, and talk through ideas. Someone who is knowledgeable and can really give you solid counsel. Coaching combines training, advising and mentoring. You get “How To” advice and help finding your own inner game stuck spots.

Here’s how I define my role as your coach:

  • Unbiased analysis and honest feedback on your performance with solid advice on how to do it better.
  • Clarity of the challenges you are encountering – that experienced set of eyes to help you see more clearly.
  • Help you prioritize and focus on what’s the most important.
  • Definition of several options to address the specific situations you are experiencing.
  • Encouragement and support. I believe in you!
  • Showing you how to adapt best practices so they make sense for you and/or your organization.
  • Challenging you to take responsibility for your own life, your own time, your own results.

You’ll learn a tremendous amount from other participants in the program too.

By participating in this group program, you not only get me as a coach, but in parts of the program where we are a group, the other participants will be invaluable in offering suggestions from their own experiences. Sometimes we think we are unique snowflakes – that there is not another nonprofit or situation that looks just like us. You’ll be amazed at how a similar situation sparks an answer for you! The sharing that takes place among participants on our quarterly calls and in the Facebook Group is incredibly valuable and so hard to find outside of a program like this.

Ready to sign up (1)

Customizing the Program for Your Nonprofit

There are two ways you can participate in this program – as an individual advancement professional or as a team of Executive Director/Dean and Development Officer/whatever title.  The basic program features are the same, but I do customize some elements based on whether you are a small-shop team or a leader or advancement professional that wants to grow professionally AND personally.

Option 1: Uplevel YOUR Results Individual Emphasis

Do you want to be a better development professional? Get new skills? Move up? Move on? Then select Individual Emphasis when you register.

You likely fall into this group if,

  • You are new to development and want individual coaching as you tackle this new role.
  • You are a new Major Gifts Officer (or other title) and want to dramatically improve both how much money you raise while also maintaining work/life harmony.
  • You are a successful, seasoned Major Gifts Officer (or other title) and want to be even better, perhaps move up, gain better work/life harmony or just get re-energized in your role – have some help managing change in your organization.
  • You are an Executive Director/CEO with all the fundraising responsibilities on your shoulders alone.
  • You are a team manager and you want to improve setting and managing team and personal priorities, and creating inspiring accountability practices.

Option 2: Small Team Emphasis

Are you a small shop? You are the ED with one position (or a fraction of a position) that manages fundraising, communications, and constituent relations? Or are you the Dean and Development Director for a unit within a larger university? Or from a small campus?

You likely fall into this group if,

  • You are an Executive Director or CEO with another person who does the advancement work – fundraising, communications, constituent relations. Or there are others who help, but two of you who get the Advancement planning and fundraising done.
  • Your organization raises little money from individual donors (e.g. you are primarily a grant or contract-funded organization or have a fee-for-service structure) and you need to launch/expand/deepen your major giving success.
  • You are a Dean and Development professional team and want to increase your giving capacity and work better together.

When you register, please select either Uplevel YOUR Results individual Emphasis or Small Team Emphasis. You can change this later if needed.

Here’s How the Coaching Program Works

We’ll be in regular communication with each other, and with the larger group, ensuring you get the personal attention you need, when you need it, for the year.

– DREAM “Discovery Session” Introductory Call

During this private call, we’ll DREAM! What do you want to be different at the end of our year? How do you want to show up in the world? We’ll discuss your personal and professional DREAMS for this experience. This is your chance to explain to me how to best customize the program to work best for you and your nonprofit. On our first group call, you’ll get to know the other participants in the program so that we can get started on the work together.

– ACT “Planning and Implementation Strategy Session”

This is generally our second call where we map out the overall major steps we’ll take over the year. Need to get a theme for the annual fund appeal? Need to carve out time for major gift work? Is having dinner more often with your family on the list? What specific “how to’s” do you need? We’ll schedule them.

– Quarterly 90-Minute Group Work Sessions

On our quarterly call, generally noon-1:30 Central, I’ll provide about 30 minutes of content on these 4 key areas:

May – Vibrant Options for Giving – A confused donor doesn’t give. A confused fundraising (or Board member) doesn’t ask

August – Planning For Your Year-end – Themes, channels, content, segments. ng program.

November – Engaging Your Board – The perfect year-end time for an extra spurt of Board thanks.

February – Setting Appointments – First time, All kinds.

The remaining 60 minutes of the call will be dedicated to you WORKING on a specific project – writing a follow up major gift letter, planning an event, whatever. As you wish, use the group to share experiences or expertise, or to ask for advice or feedback from the group. This allows you to offer your knowledge and experience to others, while also tapping into the group to help you work through your own challenges.

– ACHIEVE Your EIGHT 60-Minute Private Consultations

In addition to the Discovery Session and the Planning and Implementation session, you will have an additional 6 calls where you and I will talk privately about your work and your progress, addressing any specific issues that are coming up, answering any questions you have, keeping you on track. For each call, you will complete a DREAM ACT ACHIEVE Strategy Worksheet to make the most of our time together.

– Private Facebook Group

We’ll use a private Facebook group where we can network, share, motivate each other, and problem solve together, as a group. You’ll receive the link to join the group when you register.

– Complimentary Signed copy of “Empowering Your Board to Serve As Effective Development Ambassadors”

Let's do this


Are you ready to join the Dream, Act, Achieve Coaching Program?

Please read the agreements below. Seriously. Read this.

If you can agree to all of these requirements, we welcome you to join the program!

Participation Requirements for All

  • I understand that this is an intensive, year-long coaching program meant to accelerate my own growth as a professional, and the growth of my nonprofit’s development success.
  • I understand that my success will depend on being coachable – being open to thinking differently.
  • I will devote at least two hours per week to implementing what I select to do between coaching calls.
  • I will share my own experiences and knowledge freely with other participants, and I will openly seek their ideas and advice on my work while maintaining confidentiality within the group.
  • I will set up 8 individual one –to– one coaching sessions with Marcy. I understand it is my responsibility to complete a Strategy Worksheet and send it one day before my call.
  • I will actively contribute to the private Facebook Group.
  • I will attend Implementation Tele-Sessions bringing a project to work on and complete during the Session.
  • I understand that the investment for this year-long experience is 4 installments of $1,610 or one payment of $5,495, a savings of $945. I further understand that there are no partial registrations or cancellations. I am committing to the full-year program.
  • I understand I will receive the bonuses listed below.
  1. A complimentary ticket to Marcy’s MORE Major Gifts in-person workshop to jump-start my major giving work ($597 value)
  2. A copy of Marcy’s book, “Empowering Your Board to Serve as Successful Development Ambassadors ($25 Value)
  • My organization has approved my participation, including the required time and fee.

Register Now

I read the requirements. I’m in!

Register and Pay $5,495 in Full Now

Register and Pay in  4 Installments of $1,610

Note: If your organization requires an invoice in order to provide payment via check, please register through the links above and print out the order form to be mailed in with your payment.


Not Ready to Register Because You Have Questions? I’m happy to talk with you or anyone else involved in your decision to apply to this program. Please pick a time convenient for you for 30 minutes at www.scheduleacallwithmarcy.com or email me at info@marcyheim.com. If you need references, I can put you in touch with a past participant.

Not Ready to Register Because You Can’t Make the Investment now? Be sure you are getting my blog and let’s stay in touch.  What is the cost of NOT investing in yourself?  Sorry, but we do not offer scholarships for this program.