Guest post by Karen Eber Davis
What Does Money Have to Do with Nonprofit Entrepreneurial Leadership?
Less than you think.
But, still a lot.
Money is a tool. You need money to buy resources to support and further your entrepreneurial efforts.
Creating change is not free. If you’re an entrepreneurial leader, you need more resources than leaders satisfied with the status quo.
Money is Also an Outcome of Nonprofit Entrepreneurial Leadership
Revenue growth results from entrepreneurial leadership. Sometimes your income improvement is direct: you sell a new product or service. Sometimes it’s indirect: your initiative makes you more significant to donors, foundations, and corporations.
However, here’s where money is less important than you think to entrepreneurial leadership: Money is a means to an end. And, what is that end? Mission results.
The entrepreneurial nonprofit leader recognizes that all growth involves money. It’s a necessary part of the calculation, like the multiplication and addition sign in an equation.
More Than Money. What Else Do Entrepreneurial Nonprofit Leaders Need?
While money is never not part of the equation, money’s never enough for the entrepreneurial leader. Besides the cash, entrepreneurial leaders recognize that they need a vision and a community of supporters.
“Attracting and retaining a generous community of supporters requires an innovative strategy and most of all, it requires a shift in thinking,” said Kathy Kingston, another co-presenter on June 27. “Would it surprise you to know that your fundraising auctions and benefit events are an untapped, golden opportunity to connect your supporters meaningfully and deeply to what they love and care about most-by showing them how their gifts will positively impact the cause that impassions them?”
On vision, fellow consultant, and co-presenter on Entrepreneurial Nonprofit Leadership on June 27, Gail Bower writes, “Your vision generates the passion that fuels you and your team. When you have a clear vision of your preferred future, you are also clear about uncertainty, your mission impact and the value your organization delivers. Vision becomes the cornerstone for your programs and initiatives, the nature of your business model, which brings money and growth.”
Three Recommendations on What to Buy to Support Your Entrepreneurial Leadership
We’ve been flying in high orbit. Now, let’s switch to the nitty-gritty ground level. With the money you invest and the money you grow, what are three critical services to buy to improve your entrepreneurial leadership? Here are my recommendations:
- Help to Get Stuff Done. Buy help with tasks you don’t like, don’t know how to do, and jobs you’re not good at–but still must be done.
- Time to Think. Transform time getting stuff done into thinking time and serious conversations. For example, hire someone to take the phones for 90-minutes to allow your staff time to engage in a meaningful discussion about what blocks your growth initiatives.
- Expertise. Now as an expert in sustainable growth initiatives, you may think this recommendation is self-serving. What you don’t see is the experts like Kathy, Gail and I, foundation heads, and other nonprofit experts banging their heads against walls when they look at CEOs doing things the hard way. This is especially painful when recognizing for a modest investment you’d be above the hurdle and onward and upward. Kathy, Gail and I drink this “getting expert help Kool-Aid.” We invest in expertise regularly—it’s how we met—at a convention of the world’s best consultants.
We think this is so important that participants in the June 27 webinar will get an opportunity to… Stop! I can’t tell you about our special offer. It would spoil the surprise.
Sign up now to attend the complimentary online expert panel Entrepreneurial Nonprofit Leadership on June 27.