Have you recently heard a nonprofit CEO or Board member proclaim that “our biggest organizational challenge is having way more funds than we can use,” or something like “our income is growing at a much faster rate than we can spend it?” Well, if you have heard similar sentiments expressed by a nonprofit leader then we would love to hear about it.
The present nonprofit funding environment is challenging and certainly more so now given the impact of COVID-19 on sector. From a program and service delivery as well as an income generation perspective, nonprofits operate within tight financial margins and budgeting on a ‘shoe-string’ isn’t unfamiliar or new. Regardless of the size of the organizational budget, leaders must decide how to allocate and distribute the available budget. Ideally those decisions are guided and heavily influenced by organizational priorities and strategic directions.
One approach to budget allocation is to categorize expenditures into three buckets – the essential must-have, the nice or would love to have, and the not necessary or cannot-have. Certainly anything linked to program and services, revenue generation and administrative support usually fall into the must-have category. When funds are limited, things outside of these three areas are placed in the ‘nice-to-have’ and the cannot-have categories. In an atmosphere of funding scarcity organizations often cut back or totally eliminate investments in staff professional and leadership development. While scaling back on staff development may be a short-term measure, organizations that continually under fund or eliminate investment in this area, are helping to create the perfect conditions contributing to an unsustainable future.
Not all leadership development programs are created equal, but the good ones are worth the investment in terms of ‘bang for the buck.’ For several years Peel Leadership Centre (PLC) has been offering competency based leadership development programs. We conduct an evaluation at the end of each program and each learning session, which allows us to learn, fine-tune, adapt and improve our programs and services.
PLC’s approach to leadership development is centred on building key leadership competencies that enable leaders to act strategically, think critically, adapt quickly, be self-aware and attuned to others, walk the talk on diversity and inclusion, build trust, support staff and inspire a culture of creativity and continuous learning.
This year, PLC is pleased to launch the second year of our Executive Director Learning Network (EDLN) and Rising Leaders Network (RLN). In the first year four learning sessions were offered in each network. This year, in addition four new session, we are also offering two free bonus session for each network. If you haven’t signed up yet, you can find details about EDLN here and about RLN here.
Stay tuned because in the coming months we will be developing and unveiling new learning opportunities based on what we have heard from nonprofits about the type of support needed. We know the funding and budget challenges make it difficult for nonprofits to invest significantly in staff development, but PLC believes and is committed to offering affordable learning opportunities that will provide the most ‘bang for the limited buck.’
Your PLC Team