It’s been eight long weeks since I’ve been advising you and your nonprofit board leadership on how to manage your organization’s health and welfare during these crazy times. So, my question is: have you and your nonprofit board leadership taken stock of where you are and where your next steps are pointed on this uncharted path?
I am sure you have been inundated with more articles and advice about dealing with this than you can count. Have you taken from them key suggestions and insights that will help you make the best decisions? Or, have you been consumed only with keeping your organization’s head above water? Let us look back at the critical issues we’ve discussed to see how you have absorbed them into your “new world”.
I believe the most critical action for you is how quickly and nimbly you respond to this change and how you reinvent your organization. In my mind, there is no doubt this will have to happen. The platform that supports the delivery of your mission will no longer be totally relevant. How will you deliver that mission six months from now? Has your leadership team and nonprofit board leadership strategized how this will look?
- If you are volunteer dependent, what steps have you taken to supplement that with fewer individuals now willing to continue to volunteer?
- If you are dependent upon event fundraising, what specific strategies will replace that income if you cannot have large events for several years?
- Have you begun building a larger prospect base of qualified major individual donors with which to work? You need to do this as soon as possible.
- Will your current cultivation program continue to be viable within the changed environment?
Finally, and you may not wish to hear this, have you considered the eventuality you may not be able to exist as a stand-alone organization? There are other nonprofits in the same circumstances, and not all of you can or will survive the next 12 months. If so, what happens to your clients’ needs that you have been meeting? They will not go away. Shouldn’t your mission, your raison d’etre, be to continue assisting your clients? That is more important than “preserving your unique niche” in society or holding on to the premise that only you can meet the needs of your clients. That is a difficult, but necessary conversation to have with yourself and your board leadership.
Mirenda & Associates has assisted clients through that process before, and we can assist you as well. Write or call us for a free 30-minute consultation to evaluate your current situation and how you can come out the other side of this unprecedented time successfully.