When I came across an article about financial leadership, I happened to be in a place in my nonprofit career where I was ready to transition from financial management to financial leadership, so the article came to me at the right time and at the right place, as things so often happen to do.
This timely article entitled, “An Executive Director’s Guide to Financial Leadership,” helped point me to a new exciting direction as well as articulating something I had been thinking about but didn’t fully understand how to explain. Let’s start with the difference between financial management and financial leadership: the former is the collecting of financial data, producing financial reports and finding solutions of near-term financial issues; the latter is guiding an organization to sustainability and sustained financial health. Financial management describes what I’ve been involved with for several years in the nonprofit sector; financial leadership is the leap I intend to make.
Written by Kate Barr and Jeanne Bell, and published last December by the Nonprofit Quarterly, the article provides eight key business principles that guide financial leadership practice. All eight principles represent best practices; some are familiar and others are not. They help organizational leaders to adapt to the demands of the changing environment and maintain the balance needed for mission impact and a healthier nonprofit. Although these principles are often delegated to a nonprofit’s top leadership, they are relevant to financial staff and board members as well as executive directors. Additionally, they will apply to small, mid-size or larger organizations.
If long-term viability is your nonprofit’s goal, this information is for you. To read the article, click here: http://bit.ly/wKw9TY.