So you want to save the world and run the world (or at least a part of it) as well? So combine both desires and start working towards becoming a non-profit leader. How do you become a non-profit leader? Here are a few things you can do:
Get an advanced degree
Continuing your education can help your career greatly. You could start working toward a variety of degrees, such as a leadership degree or even an it security degree if you are a tech-person. People with advanced tech and security knowledge will be needed in nonprofits in the future.
Increase your training
Many state associations or nonprofits offer leadership-training opportunities. Classes and workshops are offered through other organizations and online, too.
Start taking leadership and speaking up
Start acting like a leader by asking for leadership opportunities and taking initiative on projects. Speak up and let people know what you’re thinking and your ideas. This also means it’s a good idea to volunteer your time within your organization and outside of it.
Build your confidence
Look for ways to build your confidence. Also, think about how you can build confidence in others.
Join a non-profit board
If you want to be a non-profit leader, you really should join a nonprofit board of directors. You’ll get great experience and have a chance to network with people who can help advance your career. Working with the board will be the most important thing you do as a nonprofit leader because otherwise things won’t get done.
Find a mentor and/or an executive coach
A mentor might be someone you work with; he or she will serve as a model for you to learn from. On the other hand, an executive coach can help learn how to improve your skills and develop a plan to reach your goals. Learning coaching skills for yourself can also help you manage your staff later.
Be informed about nonprofits and leadership
Start reading and participating in the dialogue about the nonprofit and leadership fields. You could read magazines or meet others through Twitter. Just get out there and start interacting with other people involved with nonprofits.
Work to improve your skills
Seek and accept opportunities to improve in areas that may not be your best. This may be through classes or other methods. Some good skills to have include public speaking, fundraising, grant writing, budgeting, financing, project management, working with technology, managing and marketing and PR. You don’t have to be an expert in all these areas, but it’s a good idea to have at least a basic understanding of them.
Non-profit Leaders Are Needed
There are more nonprofits today than ever, and many of the people in leadership positions are retiring or soon-to-retire. This means the demand for nonprofit leaders is increasing, so it’s a great time to start making yourself a better leader by taking some of the actions above.
About the Author: Gail Fritz has worked as a social worker and at several nonprofits. She has a leadership degree and manages a nonprofit.