are you a social profit or a non-profit?
How well do the following statements describe your 501(C)3 organization? Give yourself 1 point if the description matches little or not at all; 2 points if there is a partial match; and 3 if there is a good to strong match.
We understand that our organization is a business: we make as much money as possible. The key difference is that, instead of distributing profit to private owners or shareholders, we generate, sustain and deploy capital to solve problems (not just nibble at the margins). The more profit we make, the more good we deliver.
Our organization is the leading charitable vehicle of its kind in our geographic scope. If we find an org with a similar mission, we collaborate or merge.
We have a detailed three-year financial projection that frames the conversation for board and executive staff.
We feature easy to understand, compelling measures of our programs, and we can show how contributed dollars directly drive success.
We have devised and tested revenue generation strategies for all five funding domains: agencies, foundations, corporations, individuals, and earned income; run an return-on-investment analysis on each; and prioritized our growth strategy as a result.
We enjoy asking people for gifts: we are a highly effective use of charitable dollars, and our donors are happy to support us. Sharing this good work with others is a joyful activity.
Even when we were small, we conducted best practice performance evaluations, and we did not hesitate to move people out of positions in which they were not top performers. We are a social-change organization, not an employment safety net.
Same deal with our Board of Directors, which regularly self-evaluates its own performance to drive increasing levels of revenue toward mission fulfillment. Our org is the #1 or #2 charitable priority for every Director. Tourists have no place on our Board. Talk is not a Board deliverable.
8-13 points Most non-profits are in this category– many with terrific programs. Your homework: read Dan Pallotta’s Uncharitable, Jim Mattock’s Zone of Insolvency and Jim Collins’s Good to Great. Recruit some volunteers with successful experience scaling businesses. Check out all the free guidance on this website. And then execute.
14-20 points Figure out what you need to do to get to 3′s in every category. You should be shooting to double your budget in 6-18 months. And then double it again. Unless, of course, you’ve already solved the world’s problems. In the social profit world, you should go big or go home.
21-24 points Nicely done. Too many people think using sound business practices turns you into an exploitative robot. But you’ve figured out how to use these capitalist tools to help fix the system. Way to be, thought leader.