On Sunday I wrote about the process of finding out about myself through my non-profit. One crucial aspect of this was figuring out what talent I possessed, what I could learn and master, and what are the things that I needed to outsource to someone who had more time and talent.
I never studied law, nor do I ever want to. So when my organization needs legal advice, we seek someone outside of the organization. None of us know how to build a database, so when my girlfriend offered to create one, I jumped at the chance.
Last Wednesday I discussed how to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges of your organization. After figuring out what the weaknesses are, you have to go deeper. What can be fixed by training the staff? Who should learn what skills? What areas should be consulted on or outsourced?
If your organization is strapped for funding like mine is, its understandable that you would want to try taking on all of the problems without outside help. With no outside help, some things will turn out great, but other times you do get what you pay for. You also never know if a professional is willing to donate their time or offer you a big discount. We met our accountant at an event that was related to our field, and he has been working with us for several years for a very discounted rate.
As much as you wanted to, if you have a small organization, you can’t do everything in-house without losing out on quality and/or sanity. No one is good at everything, and there is always someone outside of your organization who has the time and talent.
Really focus on the networking opportunities that you may possess. Do you have an aunt who is a lawyer? Does she know someone who specializes in non-profits? Do you have a family friend who is tech savvy? A cousin who is in marketing? Anyone and everyone has the potential to be a resource.
There is always the potential for rejection, but finding someone to create financial statements or a social media plan is worth 10x the amount of rejections you might receive.