For Greta Thunberg, her passion for the environment started when she saw a movie in school about trash in the oceans. For Emma Watson, her passion for gender equality started when she was deemed “bossy” at age eight for doing the same thing as boys, and then later faced over-sexualization at the hands of the media at age fifteen. For Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, it was a documentary they saw on sex trafficking of children in Cambodia that led to their passion for stopping the sexual exploitation of children and led to the creation of their international nonprofit.
These well-known people didn’t start their organizations with a well-designed business model, but because of the passion they felt for injustices happening in the world. This is the case for so many nonprofits, and it is undoubtedly the passion that keeps them going when the finances are rocky.
But a lack of order in finances is also what keeps nonprofits from succeeding and keeps them from their altruistic missions or goals. The good news is this: It’s never too late to get your nonprofit’s finances in order.
Consider Cost Cutting Measures
If you’re in a rut and need to cut expenses fast, there are ways to do it. Finding and using tax breaks you’re entitled to, using the many online and software tools available to lessen the expense of both internal and external communications.
You might consider downsizing office space and related workspace expenses or retaining employees to cut back on hiring expenses. While these aren’t the most pleasant measures to consider, they have the potential to save money in the short term to get back on track.
Of course, you don’t want to stay in a lean, penny pinching situation forever. While making drastic budget cuts can make an impact tomorrow, running your nonprofit too leanly could cost you in the long run. It’s all about finding the right balance for your setup.
Get in Touch with Your Accounting Books
Depending on how well your nonprofit’s accounting has been set up, you should have a bookkeeping and fund accounting system, a bank account and a way to track statements with your own records, a method of recording donations and donation type, and a budget and way to manage the budget.
Since you’ll have to make your financial statements available to the public, it’s important to get these things in order so that you not only can fix any problems you have, but have healthy finances to report to donors and anyone else who’s interested.
Accounting software can help you to keep track of the day-to-day operations. But unless you have a lot of free time or have an aptitude for handling the accounting side of things, this is probably the last thing you want to do with your time. After all, you have a world to save!