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Oct 1, 2010

How to Lay the Groundwork for Greater Nonprofit Effectiveness

Are you creating a greater and more effective future for your organization? Laying the groundwork for success is one of the best things you can do for your nonprofit. Follow these 5 steps:

          1. Base your budget on the community’s needs

As part of your annual budget preparation, you should reassess the links between your current services, mission and the community needs they are intended to address. Continual vigilance is important to stay relevant to the needs of the community.

          2. Assess your board’s effectiveness.

The best organizations evaluate their boards as diligently as they evaluate their staff, often leveraging a third party resource. Read here for an organizational assessment resource.

          3. Allow staff to regularly attend board meetings.

A well-run board meeting with a focused purpose is a very time-efficient way for staff to know the priorities, challenges and strategies of an organization. Rather than make staff rely on rumor and hallway gossip, let them into the board room to see how issues are confronted, priorities set and the organization’s future charted.

          4. Learn to craft an effective apology.

Sometimes crises expand because an organization is unresponsive or fails to show concern for others. A well-crafted apology can contain the crisis and buy you time to formulate an effective solution.

          5. Know your labor laws.

As your organization grows, you become subject to a growing list of requirements and you need to formalize your compliance. Always consult with an attorney to make sure you are within all legal requirements.

Following these important steps will help you effectively lay the groundwork for a bright future for your organization. For more resources to help with the planning and assessment of your nonprofit, read More Than Just Money and visit the Resources section at the brand new