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[RC] budgets and non-profits - Mary Krauss

It seems to me that every established non-profit of any size eventually realizes it's ALWAYS cheaper to hire someone to handle budget/development issues than it is to continue to rely on the sweat and good hearts of dedicated volunteers. I worked in the Independent School network for quite a few years and watched (and participated in the process) as several institutions struggled through this moment of growth. It's hard to give up the habits and pleasures of being an all-volunteer group. The camaraderie and personal sense of attachment has to give way to professional training and transparency. While not entirely necessary for success, it is always best for the health of the organization if relationships can be cordial between the first and second groups. Usually there are excellent individuals who can form the bridge.

Keeping costs low in this sort of organization has to be constantly at the forefront of every decision--people who invent, then nurture the organization at first often are not prepared for the issues that creep up. They let the organization take on too many goals, too quickly for instance. I don't know if this has happened, but, the messages I've read suggest that things got too big, too quickly. The consequence appears to be that members pay more for services. That, of course, is an unhappy result, and, one is not wrong to wonder if it was really necessary. Is there any ongoing development effort to reorganize, come up with a strategic plan, and have some interested parties with deep pockets contribute to repairing the organization? I would think many of us would contribute if we knew there was a plan to guide the group into the future.

Just a few thoughts from a newbie (who's absolutely loving everything about the endurance world--particularly the feistiness of this group.)

Mary K.


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