The Nonprofit Quarterly reported this week on Giving USA’s recent report on the state of charitable giving. In a nutshell, many organizations can expect it to take at least a decade to recover to previous levels of giving. Of course that assumes Europe’s economy doesn’t collapse further and the US remains in growth mode.
As someone who serves on the board of an all-volunteer organization which hopes to soon have paid staff this dire prediction made me revisit several provocative questions I ruminate on and ask frequently:
- Does every small nonprofit need to be their own independent organization?
- Can these same organizations achieve their mission by merging with another like organization?
I think about the back office support and duplication of overhead costs that if shared would mean more constituents could be served.
Boards need to step-up and start asking the hard question…Which is it more important our organization remain independent or our constituents are served? What’s your answer for the organizations you serve?
Susan C. Hammond, CPA, MST is a leadership and business coach. She consults on improving board financial literacy and governance practices. Susan is the author of the Advisory Board Kit: A Comprehensive Guide to Establishing an Advisory Board and two e-books: Developing a Personal Advisory Board and 30 Tips to Improving Your Financial Literacy.