Effective Stewardship

Many nonprofit boards need to reimagine their roles. When they took on the leadership of the nonprofits, they agreed to become the stewards of the nonprofits. For some boards, stewardship means maintain the status quo. They aim to sustain the current level of effectiveness and efficiency. Those boards have limited their role to that of […]


Challenging and Supporting Leaders

Many boards admit they need to do more about successor leadership. The boards are unsure who should be the next chair. Their personnel committees are unsure who should be the successor to any of the key staff positions. There is a lack of bench strength even though everyone knows that leaders are important to continued […]


Staff, Your Competitive Advantage

Nonprofits are both service centers and experience centers. Clients come for the services and they have the potential to gain as much or more from the learning experience as they will gain from the services. What they learn might contribute more to their achieving the desired outcomes than the services.

The learning experience can be […]


Multiplying Critical Assets

The five critical asset classes every nonprofit should have are staff, donors, volunteers, advocates, and referral sources. Individuals and/or organizations are the assets that make up each class. Those assets are probably more important than any of the assets on the balance sheet because they create, maintain, and feed the balance sheet assets. Nurturing the […]


After the Strategic Plan

We have written many articles about strategic planning to help boards. They cover the pre-planning phase and the creation of the plan. This article will help you lay a foundation for the successful execution of the plan.

Implementation begins immediately after the plan is written. This is when the operational changes begin. When most boards […]


Talent Development

In the final analysis, the only thing your nonprofit has to offer your clients, donors, and community is the talent of your people. They design your programs, raise funds, and provide services. They are at the heart of your nonprofit’s sustainability, effectiveness, success, and your mission’s relevance.

Are you doing enough to nurture that talent?



Do Less

Board members are talented, experienced, and knowledgeable leaders. They know how to be effective. They achieve success by taking on one issue and focusing on it until it is resolved.

Many nonprofit boards try to do too much. Their agendas are cluttered with marketing decisions, programing needs, financial decisions, fundraising challenges plus the usual […]


Develop Leaders

One of the often-overlooked responsibilities of nonprofit boards is to develop its current and future leaders (volunteer and professional). Another responsibility of a nonprofit board is to lay the foundation for an uncertain future. While it sounds like it is impossible to prepare for something that is vague at best, it is still a necessity. […]


Attributes of a Highly Effective Board

Nonprofit sustainability depends on consistently providing outstanding service for many years. Of course outstanding service depends on a high-performing staff with sufficient resources (high-performing fundraising). However, of greater importance is the performance of the board.

Without great leadership, it is impossible for a team to win. Therefore, all board members must perform well so that […]


Zero Based Budgeting (ZBB)

ZBB originated in the 1970s. Therefore, it is nothing new and when something old becomes popular it is best to be cautious.

ZBB means zeroing out all line items in the budget and justifying every dollar that is added for each line item. There have been several stories recently about large organizations using ZBB to […]