The POWERFUL Nonprofit


Welcome to The POWERFUL Nonprofit!

The power of nonprofits is unmistakable. We are everywhere, doing great work every day. It’s hard work and often under-appreciated. This blog was designed with your nonprofit in mind. It’s full of tips and tricks to ease your day and make your work more achievable. Dive in and see if you don’t agree. And if you have ideas for articles about your current challenges, please let us know. Enjoy!

dollar_183335New Study Reveals Women Give More than Men

We know that donors give to our cause for varying reasons, but now, thanks to a revealing study by the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, we also know that we should be tailoring our campaigns to women donors. Women are more likely to give, and to give more, than men in similar situations. This holds true at all income levels. The study shows that women tend to be more altruistic and empathetic than men partly because of the way women view caring, self-sacrifice and the well-being of others. And women give to promote social change or to help others who are less fortunate.

The sexes view money differently and this accounts for some of the disparities in giving to charities. For many men, money represents power, achievement and prestige. For women, however, money is more about security, freedom and a way to achieve goals. Women are twice as likely as men to say that giving is the most satisfying aspect of having wealth.

Interestingly, marriage has a positive effect on giving. Households with married couples give more than those with single head of households. And if a married women’s income goes up by $10,000 then total household giving rises by 5%. The study confirms that women influence household charitable decision making more than men.

The upshot for your nonprofit is to explore tailoring your next giving campaign to women donors and prospects.

Read the full study here.

Great Quotes

“We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community… Our ambitions must be broad enough to include the aspirations and needs of others, for their sakes and for our own.”

– Cesar Chavez


Succession Planning:

                It’s Never Too Early to Start

It’s inevitable. Management staff will turn over whether we’re prepared or not. It may not happen next week or next year but it could be challenging when it does. But it doesn’t have to feel like getting hit by an out of control train. With a little planning now your nonprofit can withstand this change and be stronger after it. It’s called succession planning and it’s surprisingly simple. Let’s face it, almost no one stays forever, do they? Let’s all just recognize this fact and get prepared now. What will your organization do if the Founder (or ED, Operations Director, or Development Director leaves)?

Good managers should be developing the next generation of leaders. Succession planning allows you ample time to identify and begin to cultivate potential leaders. Maybe current staff do not have the skills needed to run the organization, but with a good succession plan in place you can help them develop their skills Maybe they need professional instruction in finance, budgeting or working with a Board. If you have a plan you will have time to see that they are continuously learning. Perhaps transitioning to a shared leadership model will be the best preparation for them (this has the added bonus of not overtaxing leaders to the point of burnout).

The initial steps in succession planning can also uncover concerns that could otherwise remain hidden such as leaders who carry ineffective staff or reveal embedded operational inefficiencies. A succession plan will flush out these types of problems so that they can be fully vetted by the Management Team and the Board.

Starting your succession plan begins with an assessment of where your organization wants to go – not where it is currently. Is your strategic plan up to date and reflective of trends in your sector?

Succession planning is not difficult and it pays off if you start early (before there’s a whiff of transition in the air) and revisit the plan annually to ensure it still makes sense for your organization.

wordleIf your nonprofit needs succession planning assistance we can help. Additionally we provide other management transition-related services: marketing and promotion, financial analysis, budget creation and evaluation, board/trustee recruitment and management, program strategy and assessment, public and media relations, fund development, staff recruitment and retention, advocacy, strategic planning, writing and editing. Please call upon us for all your Management Transition needs.