Volunteers Bring Magic to the Mission

By Mary Moss, Founding Partner. April is National Volunteer Month, and we are celebrating the strengths and talents of volunteers with our clients and in our social media. Volunteers are not supplemental, or nice to have; they are essential and foundational to a nonprofit’s mission delivery. In 1981, my first fundraising job was to recruit student volunteers at Duke University to fill 18 slots a night throughout the year for the first Dialing for Duke telethons. Duke’s Annual Fund grew exponentially from this personal touch from students to alumni. Four decades later, I can report that every effort I have led as a staff member or volunteer, or guided as a consultant, has found its success through committed volunteers. The real magic happens when you build a strong staff-volunteer partnership with shared goals resulting in a cadre [...]

Help Us Help You: Three Tips for RFPs

By Kate Hearne, VP for Corporate Services. Like many of you, our team is feeling the pace of business activity approach pre-pandemic levels. At moss+ross, this means we are seeing multiple Request for Proposals (RFPs) each week. Campaigns that were being considered in early 2020 are being revived; strategic plans and development plans need adjustments to incorporate new ways of delivering programs and engaging with donors; and clients are assessing staffing needs for an increased level of activity. As we determine our capacity for responding to campaigns, searches, assessments, or other consulting projects, the quality of the RFP helps guide those decisions. The best RFPs have three things in common: A deadline date. RFPs with defined deadlines for submission and selection will help your organization get to your real goal – starting the project! We have seen RFPs with [...]

Our Firm is Expanding

By Mary Moss and Susan Ross, Co-founders. moss+ross celebrated its 13th anniversary just a few days ago. Our firm has grown tremendously over these years, fueled by the increased demand for our extensive suite of services. In response, as of January 1, we named three longtime senior associates as partners. Joining us as senior managers will be Kim Glenn, President; Lizzy Mottern, Vice President of Talent; and Kate Hearne, Vice President of Corporate Services. Please join us in congratulating them on these new roles. We set a goal when we founded the firm to focus on relationships, not jobs. This deep caring for our community in which we both were born has been rewarded with continued year-over-year growth. As we look toward the future, we reflect on how moss+ross has grown its footprint in many important ways. 220 [...]

Building Capacity for the Future

By Kim Glenn, President. Over the last 13 years, moss+ross has had the privilege of working with 220 central North Carolina nonprofits to help them deliver on their missions. We partner with board and staff members alike to evaluate fundraising capacity, operational efficiency, and program impact, and help them develop plans that will enable them to thrive. The National Council of Nonprofits says it well: “Capacity building is not just about the capacity of a nonprofit today — it’s about the nonprofit’s ability to deliver its mission effectively now, and in the future.” When clients engage us to help them build capacity, we approach each situation as a unique opportunity to refocus on mission and find new ways to grow. We start by listening to key stakeholders, inside and outside of the nonprofit, who can help answer [...]

The Talent Puzzle

By Lizzy Mottern, Vice President of Talent. Whether trying to hire, re-think a position, tap into new networks, or creatively re-imagine career objectives, we are all working through the talent puzzle. As nonprofits craft strong and diverse teams to fulfill their missions, moss+ross is partnering with organizations to find new leaders, fill gaps during transitions, and provide expertise for special projects. There are some powerful drivers pushing these changes. The number of Americans quitting their jobs is higher than ever. According to LinkedIn, before the pandemic 1 in 67 jobs was remote, and now the number has increased to 1 in 7. Applicants are 2.5 times more likely to apply for a remote job. In the National Association of Corporate Directors 2022 Governance Outlook survey of 250 corporate members, 70% of respondents rated increased competition for talent [...]

Talent Makes it Happen

By Susan Ross, Partner. The media is calling it a “resignation revolution,” but when it happens in your shop it’s just painful. Executive Directors, Directors of Development, and other nonprofit staff leaders play an integral role in a team’s ability to deliver the services clients expect, and stay true to the promises made to donors. In both large and small environments, a vacancy or two can wreak havoc on the remaining staff’s ability to perform as they scramble to keep up with an increased workload. We have seen a huge uptick in clients needing executive search services this fall, and no signs of it slowing down. Whether or not this is related to the pandemic, the need for experienced, mission-focused leaders is very real. At moss+ross, we are poised to help with interim professional placement to keep [...]

Tips to Ease Future Staffing Transitions

By LisaCaitlin Perri. Often a staff transition means losing that person's institutional knowledge of documents, processes, and decision making. From our years of experience stepping into organizations as interim contractors, we see several key areas that can mitigate the turmoil of a turnover, improve internal efficiency, and streamline communication. Prioritize the following areas for up-to-date documentation that is readily accessible to the full team or at least to more than one staff member: Reports – For data reports or filters/queries that supported an appeal or event or board meeting, document how or why final decisions were made and the names of any final reports or filters. Be sure that the final criteria or lists are available in a secure shared location. This applies to financial and program reports to funders or other stakeholders, too. Examples: For your [...]

Mobilize with Temporary Staff Support

By Kathryn Williams. Clients often call us when they need interim staff to support temporary needs. I’ve been called on when a position becomes vacant, to assist with researching and writing grant proposals, to help prepare for a capital campaign, or to support volunteers with a project or event. When a client identifies a need, moss+ross develops a contract that spells out the scope of work, priorities, and fees, as well as the anticipated timeline for completion of the work. When a moss+ross person steps into a temporary role, the first meeting is to assess organizational needs, clarify expectations, and outline roles and responsibilities for everyone involved on the team. Whether on site or online, we communicate progress with the client through regular emails and weekly team meetings. The best way a client can support an interim [...]

Focus

By Mary Moss, Partner. Almost every day this month, as emotional headlines about rising Covid cases, the Afghan war departure, and historic weather events scrolled across my screen, I was inspired by the uninterrupted focus that comes from great nonprofit leadership. Featured below are three unstoppable moss+ross clients: Orange Habitat, Healing Transitions, and Trinity Academy. We could have featured many more who are equally focused on doing great work in our communities. The secret sauce of focus includes more than dedication to mission. Here are some tips: (1) make fundraising a weekly top priority (so you do not fall behind); (2) partner with capable volunteer and staff leaders who meet regularly (to infuse ideas and energy and share the work load); and (3) don’t forget the fun (plan agendas that highlight the work of others and recognize [...]

Advancing Equitable Fundraising

By Jeanne Murray. What does it mean to approach fundraising in an equitable way? We see many examples of organizations, foundations, boards, and nonprofit leaders taking action to be more equitable and inclusive in fundraising. Some examples: Collaboration among nonprofits, from advocacy, to grant applications, to mergers Intentionally inclusive fundraising, for example, fundraising events with tiered pricing Partnering with communities for strategic planning and program development Strengths-based framing in storytelling and messaging Stewardship efforts that ask donors and participants “how do you want to be engaged?” In the past year we have all felt the urgency to do better and be better, especially in partnering with communities to achieve results. moss+ross seeks to understand how we as individuals and as a firm can advance this conversation, and continue working with clients to help them promote deeper change. [...]

Go to Top