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Setting relationship parameters upfront is helpful. How will you work together? How will you communicate, and how frequently? How will you handle potential conflicts when they arise? It would be helpful to have a clarifying conversation about these issues at the start of all of our relationships, romantic and otherwise. Alas, that’s not often the case, but it makes a lot of sense to hash this out at the beginning of a grantee/funder relationship. With the flurry of activity that often precedes the awarding of a grant (e.g., negotiating details, revising proposals and budgets) it’s easy to sail right past this step. But we do so at our peril.
Our most recent research on nonprofit leaders, Nonprofit Challenges: What Foundations Can Do, shows that only 52 percent of nonprofits believe that their foundation funders are aware of the challenges their organizations are facing. Our data also shows that the more open nonprofits feel they can be with their funders about their challenges, the more aware their funders are of their challenges—no surprise there.
Recently, a group of CSR leaders gathered under the auspices of the LBG Research Institute to discuss the matter, and the resulting short report (titled Advancing CSR Without a Corporate Responsibility Officer) lists a number of attributes that the group feels are critical for success.
Today we are looking at board development from the perspective of the organization - who do you want on your board, and why? Your board governance committee is charged with this essential task of providing leadership for today and the future.
As the demand for services from nonprofits continues to rise in communities everywhere, more funders are recognizing capacity building as a critical way to support strong organizations that are equipped to rise to the challenge.