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The 21st Century Nonprofit Board

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Nonprofit boards across America are grappling with the countervailing forces of funding pressures and increasing demands for their services, with most saying they are unable to meet their community needs. To deal with these and other issues, board chairs are looking for deeper business expertise, greater diversity, and new skills on their boards to deal with new realities.

Almost 80% of boards are actively recruiting for between one to six members, indicating not only a time of renewal, but a shortage of experienced people, and challenges in retaining directors.

While their goal remains the same – to provide services for “charitable or mutual benefit purposes” as defined by the tax law – the way nonprofits deliver on their mission is changing in line with ongoing funding issues, and 21st century thinking about community engagement and advances in information technology.

Hybrid for-profit and nonprofit structures are proliferating, mergers are on the rise, and the public is demanding greater transparency. Many boards are also finding they need to re-examine their strategic direction and the talent mix needed to align with changing directions.

  • Funding
    Challenges with revenue models, cashflow management, and merger opportunities.
  • Change
    How to influence teams to innovate and collaborate, as well as harnessing information technology for analytics and marketing.
  • Succession
    Ensuring the best leadership and management to drive the organization forward, and also to ensure the board itself is refreshed in an orderly manner rather than reactively.

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