You know I didn't realize how wildly popular this topic would be until I started posting about it. It's not that I didn't think it was relevant...not at all but it still makes you feel good when you know you are bringing change to the lives of others. Kind of like what happens when you go through the Stages of Nonprofit development. So here is a quick overview.
Part 1- was all about the 4 Pillars in the Forming Stage. If you missed it....read it here.
Part 2-we dove into the 4 Pillars in the Building Stage of a nonprofit, what we like to refer to as the "core" of your organization. You can read more about that here.
Finally, today to wrap things up today we are focusing on Part 3-The Enhancement Stage. Now, to me, this is where the visionary leader really gets to focus more on their own processes, education, and integrations that make you uniquely you. Your personality (or lack of-so be careful) will really come through in the way you run your organization. These next 4 pillars will give you a peek into what you should be focusing on and what you should possibly be delegating. Let's take a closer look.
PILLAR 9: LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT
Dreams, passions, goals, thoughts, perseverance, dedication, determination. The one thing all these words have in common is that they speak to the nature of a leader. When you are called to leadership, you are called to a life shift. The things that drive your life are all affected by the thing that drives your vision. At times, it may seem as if you are working constantly on your vision, and the rest of the things in your life can tend to take a backseat. Don't worry, it is actually common and we all experience it at one time or another. The thing is to remember that it is extremely beneficial to prepare yourself physically, mentally and spiritually for the leadership journey ahead. You see Leadership Development is not just dealing with the skills and the tactics of being a leader, it's about learning how to lead with purpose. If you just have people following you, then you are not a leader! You must cultivate new leaders.
Here are some tips when it comes to leading with a purpose: 1. Always plan your day. Time is like money, if you don't direct it where to go, you will spend too much of it on unnecessary things, and won't know where it went Time must also be saved. If you work to be more productive, then the time you manage can be turned into the time you keep. 2. Awaken with purpose...this just means to be aware and be present for the day ahead. If you don't engage with your vision on a daily basis, then it will begin to diminish and all your forward thinking will take you into a "backslidden" state wondering how did you get there. 3. Don't be afraid to take risks. You will find that your best efforts often come from the things you dared to do. 4. Don't be afraid to fail. This may seem like an oxymoron to some, but it simply means that failure isn't actually a failure, it's just the opportunity for you to try something new to get better results. It's a level up to improvement.
How will you develop as a leader? What is driving your purpose?
We understand sometimes it helps to see things in print, so we created this Free 7 Steps To Get Community Funding Positioning Blueprint. Get access to it here.
PILLAR 10: PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT AND PLANNING
Now, this is usually the place where everyone gets hung up. Trying to figure out what programs to offer and how to actually manage them. Here's the thing; the reason many organizations do not succeed in the successful development of their program is that they don't see it as its own project. Yes, it is a project! Projects have to be managed, tweaked, tested and rearranged. They have their own feel, brand and speak uniquely to a specific subset of people; because after-all, the main objective of a program is to serve and get results. Here are some things you can do to create an effective program:
1. Design it and manage it from beginning to end. That means know what happens in every moving part and with every person involved. This means how the person delivering the service should perform and how the person receiving the service should respond.
2. Don't be afraid to change things up, even if its immediately. The key is to get the most needed services to those with the most need.
3. Stay in line with ALL program rules!!!!! This is extremely important. Program rules are not just the ones you set up, most importantly, they are the ones set up by the funder. Whatever they say goes.....goes. You cannot take the initiative to make changes to program guidelines that you have no jurisdiction over. This ensures that you stay compliant.
4. Develop a clear upfront set of written program rules that others can view and understand, and be consistent in. There is nothing worse than each staff member or volunteer operating a program based on their interpretation instead of the clear objectives. Have frequent meetings and discuss changes so everyone is on the same page. Take suggestions from those actually doing the work, they are valuable assets in the delivery of services.
5. Continue to plan out your program from start to finish. Know what it should look like for the person participating each step of the way.
6. Make sure your program is needed and not just a dream you want to fulfill. After all, its all about serving others, and you are a servant first.
Do you know that programs are needed in your community?
PILLAR 11: COMPLIANCE
Compliance is a word that you need to familiarize yourself with and quickly. In the nonprofit world compliance is the thing that keeps you legal, viable and able to continue to deliver your programs and services in an effective and efficient manner.
Who do you have to stay compliant with? Well, there are so many layers to compliance, that if you miss something as simple as sending an updated document to your Secretary of State, it could suspend you from actually operating; now that's serious!
Compliance is a lifestyle for nonprofits, not an option. The federal government has allowed you to operate tax-free and with the ability to receive grants and donations to operate, but there are stipulations and rules that come along with that existence. Here is a list of where your compliance efforts should be focused:
1. Board of Directors- you have a direct obligation to be compliant in your manner of operating under the statues of corporate law. Your organization has set up policies and procedures for the manner in which you will conduct your internal and external business, This is the first gateway.
2.. Local Government- This includes licenses, permits to operate and business filing. This is usually with your city and county governments.
3. State Government: As a corporate entity, the Secretary of State's office requires you to keep them abreast of your operating team (Board members), location and contact information. Each state is different in the amount of information and time it is requested. Check with your state government for details.
4. Federal Government: Depending on the type of NPO you are, you must file yearly forms including 990's, 990N, and other forms depending on whether or not you have staff members.
5. Grantors: The key persons who help you operate request that you keep them updated on what you did with the funds you received. This could range from monthly, quarterly and yearly reports including Audits.
Stay compliant at all cost!
PILLAR 12: GOALS AND FUTURE ACTIONS
This is the last of the 12 Pillar Visioning Model. We have gone over all the areas of viability to keep your nonprofit in operations and your Vision in Focus. The final of these is Goals and Action Plans. You have to always know where you are going, even before you start the journey.
Have you ever been driving somewhere that you BELIEVE you are familiar with, only to need to pull over and pull up Google maps or GPS so you can figure our where in the world you are going? Well, yea...not have your goals mapped out is sort of like that. The last thing you want to do is have to pull over in the midst of your journey and try to figure out the next route to take.
Having a vision of what you want to do next and where you want to go, is different from having an actual action plan. An action plan is written and it answers the questions if this-then that. But is MUST be written. Studies show that when something is written down, it you are 42% more likely to make something happen.
Don't just think about it happening, MAKE IT HAPPEN!
We believe in you visionary. That everything you need for your journey is already inside you. You just have to do 3 things:
1. Activate It
2. Cultivate It
3. Dedicate It.
We pray these pillars have blessed you, as they have been the driving force behind our success and service to over 20,000 individuals.
What are your goals? Who do you want to reach? How do you want to serve them? Think about it, and when you know...let me know.
You know where to find us-www.themylesfactor.com
Have a most powerful day!-TMF
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