This article will examine how non-profit consultant firms can help associations better fulfil their role and become more robust.
The Role Of Non-Profit Consultants In Association Management
A non-profit consultant offers a combination of conceptual awareness and practical experience that can propel associations forward. In short, we can summarise their role as:
Non-profit consultants can help with the strategic planning of day-to-day operations and special events. Typical areas of impact and services include:
- Projectmanagement and capacity building.
- Branding, marketing and information systems.
- Strategic visioning.
- Board development and coaching for strategic leadership.
- Membership growth strategies.
Financial and budget management deserves a special mention. This is important for non-profit organisations, given the increased scrutiny they are subject to and to the growing demands for financial accountability. Moreover, we can’t forget that despite their non-profit status, these organisations are still results-oriented.
However, since their work focus is elsewhere, non-profits may lack the necessary financial know-how or resources. Talking about finance, consultants come into play, as they can offer financial support in strategic association management. The benefits of this specialised assistance include:
- More efficient use and allocation of resources.
- An improved approach to staffing.
- Higher buying power.
- Reduced industry risk.
A study by AMC Institute shows that associations who worked with a consultant performed better in financial terms: they experienced income and revenue growth and increased their opportunities.
In addition to supporting advocacy and financial management strategies, consultants can help with follow-up activities, like report and case statement writing and social media activations. Lastly, in their facilitator role, consultants can help guide organisational transformation processes and support non-profit executives realising the full potential of their vision.
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The Benefits Of Working With Non-Profit Consultant Firms
A broader perspective
These consulting firms understand the public, private, and third sectors, so they are familiar with the interplay and dynamics between these market sectors. Across-the-board experience translates into the ability to respond to challenges with agility.
Responsive partners are a valuable asset in today’s world due to the increasing complexity of finances, event planning, and data protection regulations. Working with a consultant can help identify opportunities for change and improvement while ensuring full compliance.
The multiplying factor
Associations and non-profit consultants are not necessarily a single person. Often, they are companies where many different specialists work together to create coherent strategies for their clients. As a result, non-profits and associations have access to combined years (or even decades) of expertise.
Internal friction and resistance to change are a constant in organisations of all types, and sometimes it becomes necessary to obtain a more objective view. As independent advisors, non-profit consultants act as an impartial party that listens to and identify the real reasons behind differences in opinion. In other words, they can help leaders find the values behind the views and use that information to move forward.
Implementing change for the sake of change does not always lead to the desired result. Having the support of a consultant increases the chances of choosing change strategies that are more likely to lead organisations where they want to go. This may involve changing or adding programmes, reorganising teams or departments, or aligning internal processes or systems. Whichever the case, consultants can guide non-profits through a results-oriented plan.
Consulting firms already have the tools needed to develop different areas of non-profit organisations. Their staff are well-versed in research, screening, analytics, and reporting tools, so there is no need to waste precious time or resources.
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A non-profit consultant offers broad support with the operational aspects of association management. Through extensive consultation services, they put their expertise at the service of non-profits and their goals. This expertise can help associations make strategic use of resources while furthering their objectives and creating positive change.
Congrex specialises in delivering holistic management services for associations and non-profit organisations. Contact us if you want to know how to move towards your goals with confidence and all the support your association needs.
Congrex Switzerland is an internationally operating agency delivering customised solutions. This encompasses the overall organisation of conferences and meetings, including the management of hotel rooms and strategic consultancy. Annually Congrex Switzerland organises approximately 45 events with over 73’000 delegates. Amongst our clients are international associations, governmental organisations and corporations.