I found the following article in the Santa Barbara (CA) Noozehawk. Its focus was to provide 14 practices that the "best" nonprofits employ. I have listed below numbers 11-14 because they are focused on the boards. I am interested in learning what you think - is the author correct that these practices really result in best nonprofits? An you would be correct that I'm not 100% convinced but I do believe that if any one practice is adopted and proven to make a positive difference on effectiveness or efficiency - excellent!
11. Regular performance reviews and assessments for both staff and board.
The best nonprofits have a strong board governance committee that administers a simple assessment to each board member as a catalyst for a conversation about what’s working and what each board member needs to be successful. It’s also a mechanism for addressing low-performers. Of course, staff reviews occur on a regular and ongoing basis.
» 12. Board and staff have a strong leadership pipeline and solid bench strength.
On the board side, this is why it’s so important that the recruitment committee look at attributes as well as skills. The best nonprofits recruit for leaders.
This is also why committees are key — they give boards the opportunity to test-drive potential leaders.
As for staff, executive directors at the best nonprofits hire folks who could replace them. Then they invest in their development. If they have a sizeable staff, their senior staff members engage in exactly the same strategy with their staff members.
» 13. A thoughtful, long-term strategy developed jointly by board and staff.
The strategies at the best nonprofits set a clear and inspiring vision. I’m not talking about a five-year plan that causes the organization to dig into weeds. I’m talking about a destination that the board and staff can wrap their heads and hearts around, that they can raise money around and the big steps they have to take to get there. I’m also talking about a plan that allows an organization to be opportunistic and nimble.
» 14. The board chair and executive director have an amazing partnership.
This is the most important attribute of high-performing nonprofits. Nothing is more important than a relationship built upon mutual trust and respect. The board chair and executive director, along with the entire board, must be a partnership. Each one has a specific role, yet every role is essential to create and maintain a thriving organization.