People typically remain at their place of employment for one (or a mix) of two main reasons: financial/material compensation and job satisfaction. Nonprofits aren’t typically able to match the salaries of big banks or tech firms (shocking, I know!), but they continue to attract bright, young, passionate individuals to their teams because the positions promise job seekers a sense of purpose and fulfillment. Board members – particularly those that are unpaid – are also drawn into the fold because they want to be part of a movement bigger than themselves. However, these same people can experience burnout, deep frustration, and fatalism if their organizations lack healthy cultures that promote self-care, personal development, and a deep sense of purpose and meaning. If pursued well, faith-based organizations can set the example in this space and demonstrate to others what it looks like to care for those on the margins as well as in the cubicles.
Even if all board and staff members are behind the organization’s mission and vision, turnover will be high, morale will be low, and office conflict will occur if the organization’s culture is unhealthy. Caring for God’s creation well means affirming the dignity, worth, and human limitations of beneficiaries as well as those that serve your nonprofit in some capacity. The resources below will help you and your team build a space in which members feel valued and free to share their hopes, fears, ideas, and concerns. When board and staff members feel that their contributions are really making an impact and empowered to take further action, your organization’s capacity to promote true restoration can become even more profound.
In some nonprofits, employees feel that even mentioning their low levels of financial compensation or difficult work environments signals a lack of commitment or passion for the cause. Consequently, concerns or questions often remain unspoken and frustration begins to brew. Nonprofit leaders must take the steps necessary to foster communication, transparency, trust, and compassion within their work spaces to ensure that staff members are trained, equipped, and empowered to do their work with excellence while also honoring their own bodies and families as image-bearers themselves.
In many ways, your nonprofit’s board sets the pace for the entire organization. This small circle of individuals often conducts a large share of the annual fundraising, hires and fires key staff members, and deeply shapes the nonprofit’s strategic plans and initiatives. Many board members join out of a sense of conviction or passion for the organization and the people it serves. However, many members lack the education or training needed to wisely and prudently lead the organization. To take your nonprofit to the next level and leverage the networks and resources of your board as well as possible, investing in them personally and professionally is a must.
Resources are great, but they aren’t very helpful if there isn’t any way to apply the concepts to your nonprofit. The reflections and exercises in the Restore Strategies Nonprofit Workbook will help leaders in your organization begin to think through some of the most important concepts so that you are equipped to better care for the most vulnerable members of your community. Download the workbook for free today!