For those who read my blog, you know that I am in the midst of figuring out what comes next for myself. It is COVID and the world is weird so I am taking my time until I choose to quickly ramp. In all honesty, I don’t see that happening.
I have been talking to a variety of non-profits that had reached out to me as I think about maybe getting involved in one. Ones where I applaud the work they are doing. Non-profit organizations in our country are extremely different than any other country around the globe. Here all of their funding comes from the private sector because very few get enough or if any to survive from the Government. There isn’t enough Federal or State money to support the good work being done by these organizations be it a museum, an organization focused on mental health, suicide, education, and the arts. They all rely on donors. There should be more support from the Government but there isn’t.
The US might lose one-third of our museums. That is just in the art world. All those jobs, all those experiences, all that historical art. It is time for a new business model. These organizations need to exist. They are essential pieces of culture. We need more culture not less.
What should they do? They could start by actually knowing their audiences and engaging with them in a deeper way. Think about what the audience wants. Is it weekly readings online, is it a walk through the basement of the museum, it is more art books, is it building curriculums that have value.
There are assets in every organization no matter what your mission is. How do you turn them into enough capital to operate? Or at least close to it. It is time for non-profits to start thinking a bit like a business because like it or not, you are a business.