People who choose to work at a nonprofit tend to share a common desire to make the world a better place. They’re passionate, dedicated, full of heart. They can accomplish much…if they have great leadership.
A good nonprofit manager keeps all that passion and dedication focused in the right direction. He or she makes sure each individual knows their responsibilities, has the resources to carry them out, and stays energized along the way.
Strong nonprofit leaders are able to do this while also recruiting new members and volunteers, staying connected to donors, building nonprofit equity and other tasks. Let’s take a closer look at the qualities that allow leaders to manage their nonprofit successfully.
Skillful With Limited Budgets
Money is an issue for almost every organization, but in the nonprofit sector, the stakes seem higher. With a for-profit company if there are funding challenges or dips in income, the organization might not be able to grow as quickly or make as many widgets or give bonuses to employees. With a nonprofit, money problems could mean kids go hungry or life-saving medical research can’t proceed.
Successful nonprofit managers aren’t intimidated by the weight of the organization’s mission. They collaborate with the Board of Directors to develop and manage budgets responsibly. They always have an eye toward increasing efficiency and finding lucrative partnerships, grants and contracts.
Dynamic, Energizing and Magnetic
Effective nonprofit managers seem to have a super power when it comes to finding and attracting the right sponsors, donors, staff members and volunteers. They connect with people, and they’re so passionate about what their nonprofit does, those people can’t help but be inspired. They don’t have to be talked into donating their time or their money, they catch the vision and they want to help make a difference.
A good nonprofit manager’s skills don’t end there. It’s easy to get people fired up for a time, but emotion can fizzle quickly when staff and volunteers have a daily struggle with money constraints, apathetic or oppositional community members and the ongoing reality of the problem the nonprofit exists to solve.
Strong nonprofit managers know how to encourage and motivate. They keep teams focused on the mission. They honor individual contributions and positively influence teamwork.
Flexible and Agile
A good nonprofit leader can deftly switch between hats or wear several at a time. To illustrate the flexibility that’s required, check out this list of responsibilities for a current Executive Director opening with one of our clients:
- Responsible for all aspects of the operation. Leads day-to-day operations and staff and is accountable to the Board of Directors.
- Responsible for hiring, developing, retaining, managing, and evaluating staff members.
- Develops and manages the annual budget in collaboration with the Board and staff.
- Ensures all necessary licensures and accreditations are in place and adhered to.
- Works with the Board to position the organization as a strategic collaborative partner in developing better local and state mental health policy.
- Secures grants and contracts (local, state, and federal) and develops creative entrepreneurial partnerships that will enhance the future development of the organization.
They’re responsible for pretty much everything. They have to manage the staff, answer to the Board of Directors and ensure compliance with regulations, all while raising money and building the nonprofit brand.
Compelled to Make a Difference
Why would someone take on such a challenging task? Good nonprofit leaders aren’t satisfied if they’re not in a career that makes a difference. They feel they make the best use of their skills and abilities when they’re helping make the world a better place.
If you’re looking for a job where your daily work has meaning and makes a positive impact on others, your dream career might mean working with a nonprofit. At Brelsford Personnel, we want to help. Send us your resume and we’ll be in touch.