Hard times ahead

Since the US economy fell off a cliff a couple of months ago prognostications about what’s going to happen are all over the place.  Some are relatively optimistic and see an upswing in late ’09 while others are pretty, pessimistic seeing a deep dive that’ll take years to recover from.

What’s going to happen in the nonprofit sector is as much up in the air as everything else because a lot of funding is tied to investments that have cratered or donations from folks who are going to lose their jobs. It seems pretty certain that there’s going to be pain among NPOs just like the for-profits for some time.

One constructive response however is coming from a site called Plans for the Economic Crisis. It’s a wiki so everyone who registers is invited to contribute ideas about how the advocacy sector and NPOs can make the changes needed to get through the tough times ahead.

Here’s a key ideas list from a draft set of prescriptions for how to operate by the site creator Marty Kearns:

  • Build cooperative capacity first, THEN internal capacity.
  • Invest in Social Capital.
  • Be hyper communicative.
  • Focus on common story and shared vision.
  • Monitor trends on broadest scale possible.
  • Develop more robust programs to recruit support and leverage volunteers.
  • Find new ways to assemble and manage capacity in real time on projects.

It’s a join-up sort of thing and everybody’s invited.

One comment

  1. I like the key ideas. Sometimes nonprofits stay too much in the weeds that they forget to look onto the horizon and think/plan strategically. I’m a big fan of building social capital, not only for nonprofits but for the communities they serve.

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