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Successful Nonprofits Podcast

Jan 23, 2018

Typically, we are into starting something new. People are into starting new nonprofits instead of joining forces with a nonprofit with similar organizations. Moreover, we have some $200,000 nonprofits that are not growing, meeting their mission, or increasing their impact. Many forgo the steps for scaling and optimizing significance when jumping to start a nonprofit, and this is problematic.

To further our understanding, we bring in social entrepreneur, lecturer, and Co-Founder of Spark™, Kathleen Janus. Kathleen discusses her upcoming book Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up, and Make a Difference as the playbook of how to support and play your role in the nonprofit sector. She emphasizes:

  1. Creating a culture of innovation
  2. Measuring impact for better scaling
  3. Finding an appropriate funding model
  4. Embracing collective leadership
  5. Utilizing storytelling for growth



Kathleen’s website:

Kathleen’s link to purchase book and accessories:

Entrepreneurship Survey Report:

Social Start-up Success Evaluation Tool kit:



*****Timestamped Highlights****

(3:09) Kathleen shares her inspiration in writing her book

 (5:04) A common obstacle nonprofits face

(7:00) Getting over the hump: growing your budget from 500,000 to 2,000,000 with 5 steps

(7:30) Step 1: Create a culture of innovation- the importance of testing and improving as they grow.

(7:45) Step 2: Measuring impact to scale more quickly

(8:35) How to measure impact and scale with relatively little money in the bank

(10:03) Braven: an organization measuring impact by using specific data metrics

(11:48)- Advancing your metrics: Testing the Counterfactual:

(14:04) Step 3: Find your funding model

(15:05) Step 4: Build a culture of collective leadership for growth

(16:26) Number 5: Make storytelling a practice for growth

(22:00) Kathleen shares a dirty secret and honest truth

(23:20) A Success Story from Focusing on Resources: Last Mile Health Women’s Healthcare Clinic

(28:36) Problematic tendency: lack of incentive to acknowledge failure in the nonprofit sector.

(32:05) Kathleen shares how she knows when it is time to quit