Sean Tully

“The most important skills to make fundraising successful are research and communication.”


Many roles, one thread. That’s a good description of my work – both with Action Planning and alongside. These roles include (in no particular order) bid-writer, proof-reader, researcher, relationship-builder, trainer, administrator, problem-solver…and probably more besides.

So the idea of an ‘average day’ is slightly alien, but held together by that golden thread: 90%+ of my work helps churches and Christian charities to resource their mission.

With Action Planning this means coordinating the Church Capital Appeals work; helping churches to work out how they will raise the funds they need to undertake a building project – whether that’s renovation, reordering, restoration or new-build. This is never as simple as telling them where the money will come from, or how to raise the funds from other sources. Pretty much always it means helping them to identify the wealth of support that already exists within their congregation and community, and to communicate their vision in such a way as to inspire and attract generosity and philanthropy.

The most common need I come across is a need for help with fundraising as a means of solving a problem – a need to address an issue in a community, or a need to fix a building, or a need to realise a vision.

The most important skills to make fundraising successful are research and communication.

Put simply, fundraising is asking the right people for the right thing at the right time and in the right way. Oh, and being resilient when they sometimes say “no”.

It’s a fact that if you can’t communicate well, you can’t fundraise well. And without research to show you who are the right people, what is the right thing, when is the right time and what is the right way, your communication with miss the mark.

Action Planning can help you with all of these things and more. We offer multi-disciplinary support delivered by associates with the right skills. We understand the sector, we’ve honed our skills, we’ve been where you are and we’re ready to help you move forward.