A dangerous myth prevails among funders that overhead can be used as a proxy for efficiency. In fact, research shows that under-investing in administrative overhead is often linked with poor performance by nonprofits. Ann Goggins Gregory and Don Howard dubbed this process “the nonprofit starvation cycle” in the eponymous Stanford Social Innovation Review article. This webinar is for nonprofit executives who wish to invest in administration and who need strategies for communicating to funders the true costs of running their organization; funders who are interested in evaluating their grantees for efficacy and for rethinking operational costs as opportunities for investment; and all social sector professionals who are interested in understanding and spreading awareness about the dangers of under-investing in overhead.
Nonprofit Management Webinars
Innovative ideas to help nonprofit leaders better manage their organization
Our on-demand SSIR Live! webinars are offered every 4-6 weeks, and feature the Stanford Social Innovation Review’s most provocative and important topics. The registration fee is $49 per 2011-2014 webinar, or $19 per 2009/2010 webinar, and includes on-demand access for 12 months—so if you missed the live presentation, you can still register and view it at your convenience.
What does it mean to be a system leader? What does it take to catalyze collective leadership? Join Peter Senge, author of The Fifth Discipline and founder of the Society for Organizational Learning (now SoL North America), to discuss “The Dawn of System Leadership,” which explores the qualities needed to catalyze collective leadership to address social and environmental problems. Senge, who coauthored the article featured in Stanford Social Innovation Review‘s Winter 2015 issue, will host a panel to discuss how the unique attributes of a system leader can accelerate social progress. Senge will be joined by Darcy Winslow from the Academy for Systemic Change and Molly Baldwin from Roca, Inc. This webinar is for leaders who want drive social change and better understand how to enable others to engage in collective leadership.
Talent matters! It’s widely accepted that people, not programs, drive the success of nonprofits and other social sector organizations. Yet when it comes to investing in our sector’s talent, why do we overlook this? Some cite the sector’s focus on minimal overhead, while others point to the enduring perception that the resources required are cost- and time-prohibitive. Regardless of the reasons, people and organizations have largely been left to their own devices when it comes to building the talent and leadership to solve society’s deepest challenges. How can we move from acknowledging that talent matters to taking action? What could we achieve if we unleashed the social sector’s full potential by making talent and leadership a higher priority? Monisha Kapila from ProInspire, Liz Maw from Net Impact, and Linda Wood from the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund will share their perspectives and stories from the field, highlighting real-world results achieved. They will discuss the business case for investing in talent, why some funders have made investing in leadership a core part of their strategy, and innovative practices in talent development. This webinar is for nonprofit leaders and funders with an interest in developing their leaders and staff to drive the organization’s results.
This webinar is part three of a three-part series on Core Components for Driving Greater Impact, moderated by Alexa Cortes Culwell, founder and managing director of Philanthropy Futures.
Business models for sustainability and scale are made, not born. Nonprofits develop strategic plans, but often leave the business model out. This session will outline what a business model is, how it fits into a strategic planning process and why building a strong business model is vital to building a higher impact, sustainable nonprofit. Join Cortes Culwell in conversation with Antony Bugg-Levine from Nonprofit Finance Fund and Janet Gless from New Teacher Center to hear examples of different approaches to business models and some of the challenges nonprofits face in developing them.
This webinar is part two of a three-part series on Core Components for Driving Greater Impact, moderated by Alexa Cortes Culwell, founder and managing director of Philanthropy Futures.
Performance metrics form the backbone for outcome-focused organizations. Well-developed metrics help drive organizational alignment around everything from a nonprofit’s performance review system, to financial and program reports, to evaluation programs. And strong leadership and cultures help ensure that performance metrics are used to drive impact and not impede it. This session will explore how nonprofits can put together the right sets of metrics, at the right level, in order to track their progress and improve their impact. This session will define and describe theories of change in detail, with special focus on organizational clarity and alignment. Join Cortes Culwell in conversation with Tiffany Cooper Gueye from BELL, Building Educated Leaders for Life and Melanie Moore from Family Independence Initiative to hear examples of implementation.
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This webinar is part one of a three-part series on Core Components for Driving Greater Impact, moderated by Alexa Cortes Culwell, founder and managing director of Philanthropy Futures.
A theory of change is a vital tool, yet its use is widely misunderstood. This session will define and describe theories of change in detail, with special focus on organizational clarity and alignment. Join Cortes Culwell in conversation with Lissette Rodriguez from Propel Next and Gregg Croteau and Zenub Kakli from United Teen Equality Center to hear about valuable examples from successful, high-impact nonprofits, and explore the important contributions of leadership and culture. Thanks to the generosity of Edna McConnell Clark Foundation this webinar is complimentary for the month of December.
Mission creep is a pervasive and extremely debilitating problem that afflicts all too many nonprofit organizations. Some experts believe it is the number-one reason why nonprofits fail to achieve the impact for beneficiaries that they desire. Yet mission creep is easily preventable and easily curable. By attacking it head-on, nonprofit leaders can not only prevent suboptimal performance, but also open the way to taking on outsized challenges. Learn how to take your organization to a higher level by joining Kim Starkey Jonker and William F. Meehan III—along with guest presenter Sakena Yacoobi—to learn the seven characteristics of an effective mission statement. This complimentary webinar is ideal for anyone in the social sector—nonprofit management and staff, board members, and funders—who seek to create, support, and grow an organization that can align its mission with its efforts to increase impact for beneficiaries.
Many—and some leaders believe most—nonprofit boards are ineffective. Much is at stake. Weak board governance can diminish a nonprofit’s social impact, cause it to founder, and even die. But any board can improve its performance if its members are willing to confront the people, processes, and behavior challenges that cause ineffectiveness. Join Kim Starkey Jonker, William F. Meehan III, and Kathy Spahn for a discussion on the nine attributes of effective nonprofit board governance. This complimentary webinar is for social sector board members, executive directors, funders who assess and influence grantee board governance, and managers/staff who work with board members—anyone who seeks to create an organization with consistently effective governance in order to radically increase impact for beneficiaries.
Nonprofit funding strategy and financial sustainability are central to creating a vibrant and effective sector. Yet our understanding about these issues remains far less sophisticated than our understanding of programs. Too often, conventional wisdom, such as “diversification is good,” substitutes for thoughtful planning. Building upon years of primary research and consulting experience with dozens of nonprofit clients, The Bridgespan Group has developed an approach for how an organization can identify and develop a funding model that will allow it to achieve its programmatic aspirations. In this webinar Peter Kim, a manager in Bridgespan’s New York City office, and Gihani Fernando, a manager in Bridgespan’s San Franscisco office, will provide practical guidance on the steps you need to take to create a funding model for your organization, and review the types of decisions and tradeoffs that nonprofit leaders need to make along the way.
Join Katie Smith Milway and Ann Goggins Gregory, both from The Bridgespan Group, for a lively interactive dialogue about how your organization, small or large, can bridge the gaps between goals, incentives, and processes when it comes to organizational learning. Milway and Goggins will present examples of nonprofits that have successfully implemented organizational learning, such as the Knowledge Is Power Program (KIPP), World Vision, the Arizona Children’s Association, and the Nature Conservancy. The dialogue will be based in part on Milway’s recent article about creating a knowledge-sharing process (see “The Challenges of Organizational Learning,” Summer 2011 Stanford Social Innovation Review), and Gregory will present findings from a learning lab on incentives and processes that she and Milway held during the Stanford Nonprofit Management Institute in September.