The times they are a-changin’ and although every nonprofit leader will nod and say “Uh huh, I knew that” to the statement, many are not prepared for what lies ahead.
At the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ (AICPA) Not-For-Profit Industry Conference, Susan Raymond of Changing Our World Inc., provided details about the challenges to the sector stemming from change. The challenges fall in these areas:
* Representativeness and Reach: Some 25 percent of nonprofit boards remain all white. People younger than 40 make up only 17 percent of board members. Only 5 percent of CEOs are very satisfied with the ethnicity and socio-economic makeup of their boards.
* Performance: Knowing “how we are doing” must be accomplished across the organization in a unified way — Goals, Indicators, Systems.
* Skills: Social finance is going to be as important as pure donations as a mechanism for funding societal impact. The only limit on the possibilities is the nonprofit sector’s ability to understand, absorb and apply innovation.
* Management complexity. This will include skill base, culture, management focus and accountability focus.
* Communication. More than ever, complexity argues that nonprofit management, programs, fundraising and communications work seamlessly. The more diversified strategy and funding become, the more a single message will be critical.