Merger and Acquisition Territory

Exactly 10 years ago as I write, I applied for a Vice President position at Edwin Gould. I just checked the cover letter and it was a masterpiece. Of course, one reason that I’m writing this is that I was rejected. No one could have known that Edwin Gould would be acquired by the former… Read More

990 Snooping – Revenue is Vanity, Income is Sanity, Cash is Cash

There are four long-term sources of financing for nonprofits – Fee for Service, Government Grants and Contracts, Donor Advised Funds, and Charitable Giving. The 990 does not make this information available easily. On Page 1, they blend charitable donations with government contracts*, Schedule B is a report of all donors over $5,000 and frequently that… Read More

990 Snooping Sundays – Is Your Paycheck Safe?

This is the 5th of 10 articles on Sundays that look at the 990s to understand what is happening to nonprofits in general and give you some data for your own nonprofit. Today, the focus is on the ability of companies to make payroll. Is your next paycheck safe? I advocate for nonprofits to set… Read More

990 Snooping Sundays – Sleeping Assets

Are Your Assets Resting? Why would you buy a truck or a bus for your company and fail to use it?  Why would you hire a new accountant and fail to use her? We are supposed to buy fixed assets and employ people and get more money back than we spent. Nonprofits will focus on… Read More

The Check That’s Not in the Mail!

Nonprofits under $6 million in revenue are sometimes labeled as in the ‘Valley of Death.’ That’s a term from the for-profit sector (Greg Crabtree et al.) and it refers to the need to scale up administration fast even when you can’t afford the cost of hr, legal, and marketing. Infrastructure cash problems often disappear at the… Read More

The Best Non Profit That Nobody Wants

I’m always envious of the for profit companies. I know they have their bad days (Tesla after it’s car crash) but their business plan is so simple. Make Money. Two elegant words that everyone understands. The non profit world is messy business. We are mission driven. That one phrase leads to our great challenge –… Read More

When Government No Longer Loves You

Synopsis: If you have noticed that fewer government RFPs are arriving for your mission, it’s a possible sign that political priorities have changed and your great agency no longer has a private key to the statehouse. This article proposes 4 ways a nonprofit can respond to cuts in contract funding. Background Higher Education is a… Read More

Cash That Buys Time

Somebody who reads this article needs cash today. Without cash, you don’t have time to fund raise, to borrow, or to think. You can’t increase your services because you have no cash to advertise. You may even be profitable – but slow payers are strangling your cash. You have one more source of cash –… Read More

Your Non Profit is Being Smothered and How to Defend if You Don’t Like the Feeling

A new book called ‘The Challenger Customer’ points out that government and business are both much larger than in 1990. The result of this huge increase in scale is more stakeholders who review your contract or grant. The judgment of one person is replaced by the varying perspectives of a committee. Committees don’t agree internally… Read More