This new resource explains the benefits of coaching for nonprofit leaders and their organizations and lays out questions to consider from the nonprofits' perspective, including on the costs and duration of coaching and confidentiality issues. Includes quotes from coachees.
Reports on a survey of nonprofits on fundraising challenges, strategies, and results in 2009, by organization size and compared with 2008. Explores factors behind better fundraising results and lower staff morale as well as 2010 goals. Encourages more spending on development - perhaps not surprising since from a development consulting group! But of interst - the findings that 45% of the nonprofits they surveyed had higher fundraising results, 37% lower result in 2009 than 2008.
The Fort Worth Business Press reports on how the current financial situation has required real transparency. Not to ignore nonprofit organizations, the Internal Revenue Service has recently updated Form 990 to reflect the greatest number of changes in reporting requirements since the 1970s. Read the article here.
Most nonprofits responded to the troubled economy and heightened scrutiny in 2009 by cutting costs and taking steps to be more accountable, a new survey says.
Among 465 nonprofits:
- 87 percent reduced expenses
- 57 percent reduced personnel
- 53 percent delayed capital projects
- 56 percent revised their strategic plans to reflect the economic downturn
- 58 percent rebalanced their investment portfolios
- 39 percent changing their investment policies
Here are some highlights form the Network For Good free book:
- "Small, not big - The bigger the scale of what you're communicating, the smaller the impact on your audience
Hopeful, not hopeless - People tend to act on what they believe they can change--If your problem seems intractable, enormous and endless, people won't be motivated to help
Peer pressure still works (Nope, it doesn't end after high school) - People are more likely to do something if they know other people like them are doing it. "
Download it here
This report from the Gates Foundation describes how state and local government actions to cut program funding, withhold payments, and impose new fees and taxes threaten nonprofits struggling to meet growing demand while charitable giving declines. They advocate strongly that nonprofit organizations must have a strong presence on the hill to counter these policies making
Now Boston is following the on the heels of Salt Lake County and asking nonprofit organizatoins to pay a sur charge for municipal services. Boston hospitals, universities, and other tax-exempt nonprofits may be asked to contribute tens of millions of dollars more to city coffers to help pay for basic municipal services such as police and public works. Read the story here:
Frank Flynn of Stanford Graduate School of Business says in this great article that one of the most overlooked strategies for getting people to be generous, for instance, is actually to ask them! The article describes his experiments - two especially of interest
- One barrier to "the ask" is that people grossly underestimate how often their requests for help will be honored.
- People who say "no" to an initial ask are more likely to say "yes" to a subsequent one.
This excerpt from a new working paper by HBS professor Alnoor Ebrahim.
Nonprofit leaders face multiple, and sometimes competing, accountability demands: from numerous actors (upward, downward, internal), for varying purposes (financial, governance, performance, mission), and requiring differing levels of organizational response (compliance and strategic). Yet is it feasible, or even desirable, for nonprofit organizations to be accountable to everyone for everything? The challenge for leadership and management is to prioritize among competing accountability demands. This involves deciding both to whom and for what they owe accountability. HBS professor provides an overview of the current debates on nonprofit accountability, while also examining the tradeoffs inherent in a range of accountability mechanisms. Key concepts include:
- Accountability is not simply about compliance with laws or industry standards, but is more deeply connected to organizational purpose and public trust.
- Nonprofits will continue to face multiple and competing accountability demands, so they must be deliberate in prioritizing among these demands. A critical challenge is to find a balance between upward accountability to their patrons and remaining true to their missions.
- Few nonprofits have paid serious attention to how they might be more accountable to the communities they seek to serve.
- Juggling the many expectations of accountability—for finances, governance, performance, and mission—requires integration and alignment throughout the organization.
- Numerous mechanisms of accountability are available to nonprofits, such as greater transparency and disclosure, performance assessment, industry self-regulation, and adaptive learning. But leaders must adapt any such mechanisms to suit their organization.
- The greatest payoffs rest with strategy-driven forms of accountability that can help nonprofits to achieve their missions.