> Posted by Stephanie Dolan, Principal Specialist, Investing in Inclusive Finance
How do you recognize or quantify the time and effort that a non-profit’s founder has poured into an organization? Do you reward a non-profit’s board members for their countless hours donated to shaping the institution’s mission, and if so, how? What role does the staff have in determining the success of an organization? What skills and qualities are necessary in a manager, and what should be done if his skills set no longer meets the needs of an institution?
Such questions normally circulate beneath the surface at any operating non-profit. However, they truly come to light during periods of institutional transition, for example, during transformation to a for-profit or a merger of organizations. As these questions are often intensely personal, they have the potential to become, on the one hand, a bitter point of contention or, on the other, an opportunity for frank discussion and collaboration.
“Aligning Stakeholder Interests in NGO Transformations: Emerging Good Practices,” the new report released by the Council of Microfinance Equity Funds (CMEF), continues the difficult process of getting to the heart of these questions. The report, which represents the consensus of the majority of CMEF members, was drawn largely from investors’ direct experiences and the practices that they employ and/or have witnessed over the course of man institutional transformations and transitions.
“These guidelines will be useful for both investor and NGO executives alike,” said CMEF Coordinator Deborah Drake. “The issues addressed in this document have served as significant stumbling blocks to transformations and mergers in the past, and this is one of the first times that the challenge is being recognized and discussed in an open, transparent manner.”