Is your nonprofit organization sustainable and prepared for what lies ahead? Here are ten questions you should ask yourself:
- Is the mission of the organization still relevant, compelling and attractive to funders?
- Are there other organizations addressing similar or complementary needs?
- Are all programs effective and aligned with the mission?
- Are there internal management systems and controls that inform decision-making and ensure financial stability?
- Are the skills, knowledge, shared values and culture necessary to achieve the mission represented on the staff and Board?
- How much attention is paid to diversity, equity and inclusion?
- How engaged are your stakeholders, including the Board, staff and volunteers? Is turnover low?
- How effectively are resources organized, allocated and managed?
- What protocols are in place to manage crises and unforeseen challenges?
- Do you have succession plans in place for leadership roles on the Board and staff?
The best time to ask these questions is when the organization is not in a crisis or transition. Most nonprofits, however, wait too long and miss the opportunity to take steps that might limit the detrimental impact of a crisis due to programming, funding, operations or leadership turnover. Moreover, when crises do occur, such as senior staff turnover or loss of significant funding, many nonprofits focus on fixing the problem as quickly as possible rather than addressing the underlying causes. As a result similar crises tend to recur quite frequently.
For those organizations that have not recently undertaken such a “Sustainability Assessment”, leadership transitions, whether planned or unplanned, can create the opportunity for the Board, staff and other stakeholders to ensure that the nonprofit is well positioned for its next phase of growth and development. An objective review during an interim leadership transition will not only strengthen the existing operations and empower the staff, but it will also make the organization attractive to the most qualified candidates for the permanent leadership role. Interim Executive Solutions (IES) professionals help you prepare for and make the most of this opportunity.
Contact us for a free confidential consultation: Whether you are planning a leadership transition or exploring issues of governance, succession or improved operating team effectiveness, tell us your story. We may be able to provide insights and strategies to help you achieve your goals. Email us at or call 1-855-INT EXEC (1-855-468 3932).
Who We Are: We are business and nonprofit professionals dedicated to strengthening the nonprofit sector by assisting organizations throughout New England, New York (including Upstate) and New Jersey to increase their productivity and impact.