Non-profit organizations have different aims and goals from profit-driven enterprises, and although both types share common forms of internal structure and use similar methods to generate revenue, the challenges facing the non-profit director of the operation are quite different from those of a corporate or business executive.
Non-profit program directors have two primary goals: getting and spending. Non-profit organizations are typically funded by donations, so ensuring income is an essential function of the program director and a certain degree of creativity is necessary to find new revenue streams and take maximum advantage of those that currently exist. Spending this money effectively is also a major challenge, as two different non-profit organizations may have very different priorities. This money is often spent on staffing, administrative overhead, sponsored causes, and advertising and outreach, and it all must be scrupulously recorded. These program directors must also provide vision for the organization to solidify its aims and communicate them to everyone within the organization, and they are generally responsible for staffing, soliciting volunteers if necessary, and developing workable budgets.
The leadership of the non-profit program director largely determines the health and success of the non-profit organization. Those in this position must be effective communicators who can get the most out of individuals and inspire them to do their best, even for little to no compensation. A strong sense of ethics is also important, as is a true dedication to the causes the non-profit strives to promote.
Program Director, Non-Profit Tasks
- Ensure that record keeping and statistical information is maintained, updated and communicated.
- Supervise the program managers/coordinators, assisting with staff hiring, coaching and evaluation.
- Coordinate program planning and development with other company activities.
- Evaluate program policies to ensure that they meet client needs, are effectively administered, are fairly applied.
- Assist in preparing program budgets; administer approved amounts, ensuring compliance.