Not all philanthropists are responsible for running a charity, but all those who successfully run charities should be considered philanthropists. Running a philanthropy is a huge undertaking and involves a lot of hard work; it really isn’t that different from running your own business. Being the head of a charity can be incredibly rewarding, because you’re helping people gain better lives and showing others the importance of helping out those in need. Here’s an inside look into what it’s like leading a philanthropy and what is required of a philanthropist each day.
Plan new ways to raise funds
Many philanthropies receive government funding or grants from other sources or can rely on regular donations from a benefactor. However, rarely do these sources of funding cover all the necessary costs for a philanthropy, especially when the organization is working on solving a major problem. Philanthropies rely on donations to achieve their mission, so the head of a charity needs work with their team to find new ways to increase fundraising and donations in order to keep running the organization and helping those in need.
Strategically use current resources
If you’re in charge of a philanthropy, you’re responsible for deciding how to use the resources you do have. For larger philanthropies, this means you need to figure out how to use significant amounts of funds and large groups of people to best meet the needs of the cause you’re working for. For many philanthropies, a natural disaster means it’s time for them to mobilize volunteers, goods, and money and use these things where they’re most needed. Once a philanthropy is established or if a trip or event if planned far ahead of time, figuring out how to use resources becomes a little easier. However, there are always new needs to be met and many causes evolve over time.
Manage volunteers effectively
An important part of managing a philanthropy is recognizing how to effectively manage volunteers. Depending on the size of the organization, there could be just a few volunteers or there could be hundreds and it’s up to you to make decisions on where they’re most needed. Larger philanthropies may have other people who oversee volunteers, but whoever is leading a philanthropy should still be aware of what’s happening and make sure volunteers’ help is being used the best it can.
Evaluate where help is needed
Like I mentioned above, the causes philanthropies work on often evolve and can change in various ways. When overseeing a philanthropic organization, it’s important that you stay up-to-date with these changes and make decisions within the organization in relation to said changes. If your philanthropy significantly grows, it’s the perfect opportunity to expand your focus to a broader cause. Or, if a natural disaster occurs, you might want to divert some of your resources toward helping those affected and cut back in some other area.
One of the most important parts of running a philanthropy is being responsible when it comes to making decisions and using resources; learn to be innovative instead of sticking with a routine.