Management of charitable foundations is a new concept, and most current leaders came to this field from other areas of management. The efficacy of charities can be reached only when they get maximum profits and make a substantial social impact. Smart charities are all well-managed organizations that do not depend on donations or governmental handouts only. Running a philanthropic foundation, one sets a strong investment policy that complies with taxes and other governmental regulations. The Canadian BoardSource organization that is a global leader in the management of the social sector offers CEOs a range of practices essential for effective leadership.
Some steps proposed by the BoardSource coincide with general demands for effective leadership. The nonprofit board shall conduct strategic planning, approve the annual budget, undertake an audit, and evaluate the chief executive’s performance like any other organization. It would be also useful to adopt term limits for the board members that would prevent stagnation of the unproductive staff. Board members, as well as CEOs, must attend meetings regularly and new members shall be recruited if necessary.
The level of board organization and discipline strongly affects the output of philanthropic foundations. Developing a consent agenda helps the members to better structure their meetings and move on to pressing problems. Besides open discussions, many leaders take executive sessions to discuss certain issues in private. Boards in social organizations shall be inclusive to reproduce diversity in their institution, and if they do so, they also need to adopt a conflict-of-interest policy. Every board member is also entitled to make a personal contribution to the organization to demonstrate their commitment.
However effective the board members were, they always depend on the society and its participation. That is why a strong online presence is a must for philanthropic businesses. Meeting their society is the best way to help it in any way.