Planning Archives - TurnAround Executive Coaching

NonProfits rarely see the need to find a business partner. At best, they find a favorite auditor, attorney or supply vendor and essentially develop no-bid contracts with their favorites. Stuart Mendel and Jeffrey Brudney found that nonprofit and business partnerships were only 10% of partnerships.

Partnerships mean that both partners get something that they want from the relationship. Nonprofit CEOs are nervous about relationships that might make a business – more profitable. Actually, every time that you pay your auditor, I assume that they get richer! So there is nothing illegal or unethical about partnership with business.

What are bad partnerships with Business?

Brand Risk – The biggest risk is Brand risk. If you choose to partner with businesses that don’t match your values, mission, or values of your clients, you can seriously damage your brand. Partnerships with business should hire a coach to help you review partner proposals with your leadership team, board, and stakeholders before you proceed. For example, the company in New York that has done audits for Mr. Trump also pushes aggressively in the nonprofit space locally. Would it affect your nonprofit brand if you chose the same auditor? What questions would you raise before you made the decision? Your coach can help.

Kentucky Fried Chicken partnered to give money for breast cancer cure. They printed a month of pink buckets for chicken. Media quickly seized on the links between calories, obesity and breast cancer. There was nothing unethical with the business relationship but the nonprofit failed to consider key implications of their brand. Proceed slowly and use a coach!

Process Risk – A second risk is process risk. The processes and corporate cultures of all companies are far different. When any two groups develop a partnership, there needs to be a written charter that the coach helps you to carefully spell out details

Both Brand Risk and Process Risk can be managed. Leaders lean into the danger, use a coach, and do risk management! You can partner with business.

What’s a good reason to partner with Business? Mendel and Brudner list four reasons and I add two more!

  1. Your nonprofit needs money – Pampers diapers and UNICEF were partners for a long time and UNICEF got funding for its mission. Pampers added to its brand strength by being interested in children. Find a business owner who really likes your mission.
  2. Your nonprofit helps a Business that helps your clients – A family doctor has a practice locally that easily accepts cash and his prices are low. Any nonprofit that helps low income families would be helping their clients by referring them to the doctor if there are not other good choices.
  3. Your nonprofit needs more expertise – A local construction company is willing to partner with your nonprofit with internships. You have a training program for people released from prison but no expertise in introducing your best graduates to the job market. The construction company gets a supply of semi skilled workers that come there with your recommendation.
  4. Both you and the Business want market share – You realize that a local bakery attracts young parents whose children would be eligible for your school. You already have 200 parents who don’t go to that bakery. If both companies give discounts to each other’s customers for a month, then both groups of parents are now potentially interested in both companies.
  5. Sumo Number Four – Bernie Brenner suggests that you find a partner who is 10x bigger than you and partner with them. For example, a real estate developer suddenly gets bad press about rodent infestation. They need a brand partner who will help them clean their brand. They donate money to your nonprofit and rebrand as the safe rental for families. This partnership is the most risky for the nonprofit but potentially the most effective.
  6. More Respect Than Government – Government partnerships are often take it or leave it contracts. They add conditions without reflecting on the costs of compliance. They assume that they are the head in the partnership and your nonprofit is the hands and feet. Business partners can be different, You can search until you find the right business to partner but you can’t easily choose another government to partner if you don’t like the first one!

Conclusion: Partnerships are critical in the growth of nonprofits and often welcomed by business. You will be treated as a co-equal partner by the right Business. Remember:

  • This is not a plan for next week – it’s in your three-year plan.
  • Use a coach and develop carefully.
  • Avoid brand and process risk
  • Involve your leadership and board in the decision
  • Enjoy the expansion of your good work!

Giving Tuesday may provide gifts for your nonprofit, but most of us need more than one Giving Tuesday! Financing your nonprofit programs through charitable giving is a cliff hanger because gifts come and go quickly. You probably have discovered that.

I just analyzed the 990’s of a large, wonderful nonprofit in New York City.

BUT I WAS SHOCKED

Their gifts dropped from $120 million to $70 million in one year. I couldn’t believe it. I have a friend that knows them and she said that gifts from hedge funds really have been their major source of funding. In bad years, the hedge fund gifts go away.

For Giving Tuesday, I’m giving two hours of coaching in December to five nonprofit leadership teams. APPLY HERE I’ll review your 990’s, answer questions, and share a couple of tools as appropriate. Good advice never disappears or loses value!

I’m getting more requests than I can honor but its free to apply.

And I truly hope your finances get a major boost on Giving Tuesday also!

Kind Regards

Ronald Dale Tompkins
Certified NonProfit Teams Coach

APPLY HERE. It takes one minute 😊  

Many nonprofit leaders face an unending mountain of tasks with no clear path to a better life and leadership. I managed the chaos — by Mastering the Rockefeller Habits.

Capital One Bank has graciously agreed to host so its free for you. June 20 at 8:30am – 10:30am at 320 Park Avenue. Write me at tompkir1@gmail.com for a reservation.

Why There Are Summits

Verne Harnish collects thought leaders twice a year to help businesses and nonprofits who want to grow. Scaling Up philosophy is that to 10X your business, you have to 10X your people. And to 10X your people, you have to 10X yourself. Summits are two days of nonstop quality ideas – like getting a drink from a high-pressure hose. One company brings along a secretary just to take 25 pages of notes to review afterward.

Speakers/ Thought Leaders At Atlanta Summit May 21-22
The Atlanta Summit May 21-22

Scaling Up Summits and Coaching are an investment of time and money with the promise that your nonprofit will get tools to grow.

BUT

There is also a cheap approach to the firehose if you’re not sure. Buy the books now that Summit speakers have written and you’ll be convinced of the value.

Reading is a Cheap Way to Drink at the Firehose

I have started to read a book a week to get ready.

Last week, I read a book from one of the Summit speakers who will be in Atlanta in May. Mariya Yao wrote ‘Applied Artificial Intelligence – A Handbook for Business Leaders.’ It’s an easy read and gets leaders up to speed on using Artificial Intelligence in your nonprofit. (Spoiler Alert – you are already using weak artificial intelligence, so you have started!)

I’ve been scared of Artificial Intelligence because it sounds expensive. It sounds like new software ($$$) and new staff to understand the software ($$$) with me to raise the money ($$$$)

Mariya begins with the cheapest of ideas -what do you want to know? Artificial intelligence starts with the intelligence of leaders! Who knew? I actually brought managers together last Thursday to ask that question. What a great session as people gave different ideas as to why the school is so successful. I made a tool to guide our discussion. Email me if you want to try something with your team and I’ll send a copy.

Join Me in Atlanta, Invest in Future

Join me in Atlanta after you read a book and see what you’ll will get. Invite board members too. We’ll have a late night session Tuesday night to meet and review the day. Text me before you register because there is a nonprofit rate.

Keep reading for scaling!

A new survey of 2,100 people has found that only 19% of Americans really trust nonprofits and religious groups. The best news that we can take from this report is that they don’t distrust us as much as they distrust other companies and government.

We live in an age of Fake News. We have Wikileaks, Trump, and the Russians pushing out Fake News and accusing mainstream media and others of Fake News. Our nation has caught the Fake News Flu and is now vaccinated against most institutions. hyttalo-souza-1074680-unsplash

Rusty Shelton, author of Authority Marketing says that people trust people more than institutions. We tend to buy from stores where we know someone. We live in an atmosphere of high suspicion.

There is more need than ever for Strategic Planning.  There are 1.5 million nonprofits in the USA. Many are engaged in critical and worthwhile services. With planning, Fake News Flu is just another challenge that can be overcome. If I can help, email me at Ronald.Tompkins@TAConsulting.live to get a conversation started.

PS. Here’s the link to the entire report. https://www.give.org/docs/default-source/donor-trust-library/give-org-donor-trust-report.pdf