If you work at a nonprofit organization, public agency, or other mission-driven organization, chances are you are grappling with dynamic changes in your operating environment that have a direct impact on your ability to deliver services, generate resources, and accomplish your mission. You are not alone in this, as fundamental shifts in populations, the economy, public policy, and technology are reshaping the social sectors in communities across the country.

Success in this environment requires organizations that are built to last in choppy seas.  The population may shift, service needs may change, partners may leave, competitors may arrive, public funding may by redirected, private funders may adjust priorities, new technologies may disrupt traditional ways of operating.   Organizations that are built to last are able to anticipate and adjust so they can continue delivering value for the people and community they serve.

We call these organizations that are built to last high impact organizations. Think of a high impact organization as one that demonstrates positive impact, effective management, and stakeholder value over time.  By demonstrating these results, high impact organizations are able to survive and thrive despite dynamic changes in their operating environment.

Creating and sustaining a high impact organization is challenging but doable.  Some organizations can demonstrate positive impact, but they struggle with effective management.  Other organizations manage resources effectively, but have difficulty demonstrating positive impact.  Still others do great work, but fail to address the priorities of key stakeholders.  A high impact organization demonstrates all of these elements, and this requires creative strategy, culture, leadership, management, teamwork, and commitment.  Consequently, creating a high impact organization is everyone’s job.

  • You can help create a high impact organization from whatever position you are in right now.
    • High impact organizations are a result of countless decisions and actions by every individual in the organization.
    • You can help create a high impact organization whether you are a junior team member or the CEO.
    • You can take action by learning and applying key skills for commitment, teamwork, management, leadership, culture, and strategy.
    • Chances are you are already doing positive things in one or more of these areas.
    • The goal is to keep learning, growing, and expanding your positive influence.

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