Mission is primary for social impact organizations. But money is also vitally important. Aligning money with mission is one of the most important, but often overlooked, strategic activities that a social impact organization can engage in.
Mission: Social enterprises, nonprofits, B-corps, and other social impact organizations exist to fulfill their core mission whether that be serving people in their neighborhood, addressing a core systemic inequality, caring for the environment, inspiring people through the arts, or any number of other important causes.
Money: Mission is primary. Always start and design activities with mission in mind. But almost all social impact organizations need money to accomplish their mission. Money pays for programs, staff, and direct constituent support. Money helps organizations tell their stories, and generate new funding. Without attending to the business of an organization there will be no money for the mission. Attending to both money and mission is essential for successful social impact to happen.
Mission & Money Aligned: And the two are intimately and deeply tied to each other. The way an organization generates money can positively or negatively impact its core mission purpose. And the mission activities an organization pursues can generate or cost money. This is especially important as many nonprofit and social impact organizations are increasingly looking to generate earned income and not just fund their mission through donations. Social enterprise, as this is often called, has tremendous promise, but also involves some risk if money and mission are not well aligned.
The following tools and resources from RootedGood and our founders will help you align your money and mission for greater impact and stronger financial resiliency.
Is your money and mission aligned?
Money & Mission Alignment Tool
This heuristic map and planning tool is designed to help organizations evaluate their alignment of money and mission in order to do both, better. Gain a deeper understanding of how money and mission intersect in your organization by learning this framework and applying to your context.
What People Are Saying About: Money & Mission Alignment tool
“Wow, what an exceptional resource! We often think of the connection between money and mission as a tug of war. This framework demonstrates that they are interwoven and the tool helps focus leadership energy in the right direction.”
– Grace Pomroy, financial educator, speaker, and coach
Join the Mycelium Network today to access this tool for free.
Money & Mission Alignment Assessment
Take your alignment to the next level. This assessment will take you through a guided process to plot your activities on the money and mission alignment map. You will receive a customized report showing visually how your activities affect your mission and your financial health. Your report will provide recommendations for how to align your money with your mission better in order to generate more funds with mission consistent activity and stop doing activities that hinder your work. Contact us to access the prototype of this assessment which is in the testing phase.
Contact us to access the prototype of this assessment which is in the testing phase.
Book: We Aren't Broke: Uncovering Hidden Resources for Mission and Ministry
In this book, RootedGood cofounder, Mark Elsdon, writes about the perceived funding crisis in many Christian churches and challenges the assumption that churches are broke. He uncovers the fact that there are billions of dollars of investment assets and property available to churches to use differently for mission through impact investment and social enterprise. The second half of the book contains practical and tested ingredients for aligning money and mission in social impact organizations.
What people are saying about "We Aren't Broke":
“This is a book the likes of which you have never read before. Mark Elsdon has written a book on money in the church that is both smart and wise. The smart part of his book is that he opens up important specific resources for good money management and investment. The wise part of his book is that he appeals to faith in order to imagine afresh the uses of our resources. Elsdon proposes nothing less than that we “recalibrate our relationship with money” in order not to keep reiterating old practices. This book is a must for any part of the church that fears it lacks adequate resources.
– Walter Brueggemann, Columbia Seminary
Order "We Aren't Broke" here
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