When staff and Board members get immersed in the important work of a nonprofit organization it can be hard to maintain an objective view of what is working and what is not. An independent organizational review, gathering input through staff, Board and stakeholder interviews and analyzing key measures of stability and impact, will surface issues that might need to be addressed. This analysis can inform the actions of the current leader and the Board. When a transition is appropriate, the analysis will prioritize actions that should take place during the transition in order to stabilize and strengthen the organization and prepare it to attract its next leader. This review will also inform the Board as to whether the organization would benefit from additional temporary capacity and professional expertise to address time sensitive tactical and strategic needs.
Transitions are often a surprise. Either the current Executive Director decides to move on or something happens that prompts the Board to make a change. Even when departures are anticipated, many organizations do not make plans until fairly close to the transition. An effective transition plan will ensure that there are clear roles and responsibilities in the event of either an anticipated departure or an unexpected crisis. IES works with nonprofits to address the essential elements of a transition plan including maintenance of operations, stakeholder communications, interim leadership, financial stability, staff engagement and more. While crises cannot be averted, organizations that are prepared for change can continue to provide the much-needed services on which their stakeholders depend.
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