10 resolutions for the nonprofit sector in 2012

Everywhere you look this week, someone or another is touting their best intentions for improvement in the coming year. Not to be outdone, the Chronicle of Philanthropy invited members of its LinkedIn discussion group to submit their resolutions for the nonprofit world in 2012.

Here’s a sampling of the responses to date.

In 2012, we resolve to

  1. be a good steward of the money we bring in.
  2. hire wisely.
  3. continue to steward and care for all of my donors, increasing our communications to them on how precious their gifts are and what their support does for [fill in your cause] each day.
  4. establish formal collaborations between complementary organizations that can increase both the efficiency and impact of each partner agency.
  5. do more to measure and evaluate outcomes.
  6. stop referring to our industry by what we don’t do. Not for profit is a tax status, not an operating model. We are Social Benefit Organizations that produce significant value. Hold your head high!
  7. use marketing strategies and tools as effectively as possible by: choosing the best tools (quality over quantity) and avoid scrapping everything and starting over each time a new staff leader comes in; shoring up traditional marketing activities before launching into the latest and greatest thing; and, using the website as the hub of all things marketing and development.
  8. improve board governance, oversight and engagement in fundraising. Sounds like three but they work together.
  9. have enough confidence in the critical role we nonprofits have in society to insist that donors, grantors, and governments acknowledge that worth by paying for the fully-loaded cost of our services rather than starving us to death with under-reimbursement and late payments.
  10. grow our organizations through the careful cultivation of generous donors to work and work with boards to help them better understand their impact on the fundraising program.

Kudos to the nonprofit leaders who included boards in their resolutions. As regular readers of Generous Matters are well aware, I’m resolved to spread the word that better boards make for better organizations — in 2012 and all the years to come.

Add to the list: Post your resolution(s) for the nonprofit community in the comment box below. Let’s keep the good intentions flowing.

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