Advancing and developing without setting too many precedents

August 21, 2014

Advancing and developing without setting too many precedents

Nonprofits that want to change or develop their individual programs, overall mission or even their administrative and office operations are understandably weary about setting precedents that could come back to cause problems further down the line. While precedents certainly aren't negative in and of themselves, leaders at charitable groups don't want a pilot program or test run of a new practice to change long-term perceptions and expectations among the local community and the populations being served. Correctly framing the matter at hand and getting past the worries of some board members and employees can help to get support for a change that can lead to positive results.

Nomenclature is one of the most important parts of the conversation when it comes to framing a potential new project or trial to board members and other stakeholders. Sometimes, setting aside a few minutes at the beginning of a meeting and correctly framing a new outreach effort or marketing plan as a test run is enough to get approval. Carefully describing something as not a standard going forward, but an experiment that will be evaluated, can generate the support for something that may be outside the comfort zones of those involved. Nonprofit association executive Cindy Butts recently provided some advice about getting decision-makers to approve such a move, including highlighting the extenuating circumstances. Providing a reason why a new program will be implemented and managed differently than all the others is easier to understand if the changes are due to specific reasons such as a higher-than-expected budget or a change in demographics.

Point to evidence and benefits
Besides spelling out the reasons behind a new or changed approach, those advocating for a new development can also highlight how similar efforts have worked out for other nonprofits, or even private businesses. If a nonprofit employee wants to expand the social media presence of an organization, for example, then providing an operational plan and set of best practices can help to sway opinions. There are plenty of resources available to help in these efforts. In relation to the specific example used, Grant Space, a learning community for nonprofits, offers a curated list of nonprofit social media best practices and advice. A little bit of research and planning ahead of time can pay off when the time comes to convince leaders to try a different track.

Content presented by First Nonprofit Group, the leading provider of state unemployment insurance solutions for 501(c)(3) nonprofit employers.

single-post17879

Ready to chat?
Get in touch today to request a no-obligation savings evaluation.

Testimonials

In addition to their money-saving purpose on behalf of nonprofit organizations like AHS, First Nonprofit’s Nonprofit Unemployment Fund
streamlines the information we need to efficiently manage unemployment claims. Our relationship with NU Fund gave us access to such things as advice on planning for what’s ahead and how to analyze cost scenarios when unexpected events occurred. Both experiences were very helpful.

Asian Health Services, Oakland, CA

The Ensight Skills Center has enjoyed working with First Nonprofit for several years. We are enrolled in their Unemployment Savings Program and although we have not required a lot of intervention, there have been a few times. I know others have dealt with the same problem of unemployment fraud over the last year and in our case, a call to First Nonprofit (they actually answer their phones) cleared up the issue. They also sent us a letter to send to all our employees telling them what they needed to do to prevent this in the future and protect themselves. What a relief! Over the years if I have questions or concerns, they are happy to listen, advise and help if they can. Another BIG advantage of using First Nonprofit is that all the money that is paid into the Unemployment Savings Program lives on my balance sheet as an asset. The money continues to be Ensight’s not the governments. First Nonprofit has certainly given me peace of mind.

Ensight Skills Center, Inc, Fort Collins, CO

Visually Impaired Preschool Services has been a client of First Non-Profit since it was first offered as a benefit of VisionServe Alliance. We completed a thorough evaluation of cash savings to our agency before taking advantage of this wonderful benefit and it has been a very wise decision. Our experience with the processes from accounting to claims have been professional, expeditious and easy.

Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY

NYCON members who use First Nonprofit’s programs enjoy enduring savings and improved efficiency. Our association knows that success, because from the beginning, we achieved the same great benefits. Great savings, seamless technology, and responsive service. NYCON highly recommends First Nonprofit’s remarkable unemployment solutions.

New York Council of Nonprofits, Albany, NY

It has been our sincere pleasure to maintain a strong, vibrant business partnership with First Nonprofit. We greatly admire their strong industry knowledge, technical expertise, constant professionalism, knowledgeable and dedicated staff. They are always extremely responsive, personable and provide us with the necessary guidance and recommendations on a numerous variety of employment scenarios. We

Thresholds, Chicago, IL

Because INCS advocates for the operating conditions that allow charter public schools to provide high quality public education, partnering with First Nonprofit was an easy decision. First Nonprofit’s unemployment programs provide our member schools two operating elements crucial to their ability to provide high quality public education: savings and budget certainty. Capable, committed teachers are the key to student success. By participating in the unemployment insurance savings plan, charter public schools gain peace of mind and are able to invest more money in their teachers.

Illinois Network of Charter Schools, Chicago, IL

Throughout our membership in the Unemployment Savings Program, First Nonprofit understood our demands, community dynamics, and the importance of seamless services; that allowed us to serve our constituents better.

Prevent Blindness America, Chicago, IL