Posted by danosky | Posted in The Philanthropy Therapist | Posted on 03-28-2013
If I had to describe the climate for non-profit success – I would say it is tenuous at best, a little like this spring.
Spring has never been my favorite season, though I have come to recognize its value in the cycle of life. Personally, I’m not all that attracted to mud; though, I do appreciate the promise of everything springing back to life.
For many non-profits, though, this spring will be a time of reflection and circumspection. Already pummeled by budget cuts, anticipating more to come and facing increased competition for the philanthropic dollar, they are now bracing for the threat that municipalities, states and the federal government will be balancing their budgets with their funding. Soon, many non-profit organizations, will share my opinion of spring — it’s a season that is mired in mud.
Yet, in spite of that, many organizations are facing these challenges head-on and experiencing growth and increased success. What it requires is a willingness to evaluate programs and services from a different perspective and try new approaches.
Today, there are more organizations talking about collaboration, exploring shared services, and even entering into discussions of merging. Internally, we are seeing more organizations investing in organizational assessments in the areas of program evaluation, finance, and development, followed by organizational plans, both strategic and business focused.
Those organizations that are most successful are also paying close attention to measuring and communicating organizational impact – in ways that both funders and donors can understand. They aren’t preparing brochures about services, but blogs and press releases about impact and the difference they are making.
Spring – whether speaking euphemistically or literally – is the season for cleaning and getting your house in order. Perhaps that is the real value of spring.