Nonprofit Governance and the Power of Things by Fredrik O. Andersson and Avery Edenfield (Summer 2015)
Nonprofit boards are famously prone to acting in ways that suggest unseen forces. This soon-to-be-classic article takes on two types of such forces: the dominant coalition and the inanimate actor.
Creative Frugality (and Its Limits): A Penny Saved: Creative Ways to Thrive by Beth Bird (Summer 2015)
Resourcefulness and ingenuity often require looking inward to find those hidden gems of cost savings or revenue within an organization.
When borrowing money, nonprofits are in the position of risking not their own but the publicís assets. This should compel nonprofits to make judicious decisions about how much risk they can incur when borrowing, either in the short or long term.
Unbeknownst to much of the nonprofit sector, four of the largest corporate banks in the country have trustees on several prominent charitable foundations. A number of court cases have taken banks to task for improperly using their roles as trustees to further their own self-interests toward maximizing their power and profits instead of the philanthropic priorities of the organizations they are paid to serve. In so doing, money that could have been going to the charities is instead lining the pockets of these banks.
Directors and Officers Liability Insurance: Why Itís Worth the Cost by Pamela E. Davis (Summer 2015)
Do we really need D&O insurance? What risks might we face by deferring this cost?
On Using What You Have to Resist Buying What You Do Not Need: An IT Fable from the Front Lines by the editors (Summer 2015)
Your IT system cannot be considered a stand-alone project but rather needs to flow from and integrate into your larger organizationóits plan, budget, culture, and capacity.
Valuable Free Real Estate Available at GuideStar: Ignore at Your Own Risk by Lindsay J. K. Nichols, Gabe Cohen, and Ruth McCambridge (Summer 2015)
When you take the time to update and elaborate on your profile on GuideStar, youíre showing your organizationís commitment to transparency while communicating directly with your stakeholders.
Leverage points are places within a system where a small change can produce major effects. Recognizing where these points occur and understanding how best to use them will help you to better manage your organization.
Resource Wise: How Some Nonprofits Perform above Their Budget Grade by Jon Pratt and Ruth McCambridge (Summer 2015)
The Nonprofit Quarterly invited readers to describe ways in which they were able to cut costs within their organizations while also improving upon their work, and anchored the responses to the Statement of Functions page of the Form 990 that all nonprofits must complete for the IRS. This special insert includes a blank form that you can use to explore your own cost-saving opportunities.
Through the smart use of data, organizations can better assess the reach and success of their missions without sacrificing the passion undergirding their work. Learning organizations exemplify the fundamental characteristics required to determine whether an organization is fulfilling its goalsóand if not, how those shortcomings can be addressed.
Sometimes, taking our nonprofit budgets in hand requires a deeper dive than may feel completely comfortable. Think business model!