Ten Steps to Demonstrating Your Organization’s Trustworthiness
Develop a clear vision statement that is a broad declaration of the change you want to see.
Follow with a mission statement that is brief and clearly states what your organization will do toward achieving that vision. Some believe that your mission statement should fit on the back of a business card – but we’re not that strict.
With your board and staff, develop a statement of your organizational values.
Develop a policy manual that includes:
- Investments (if applicable)
- Contracting and purchasing
- HR policies and practices (including diversity, sexual harassment, compensation, etc.)
- Conflict of interest policy for board members and staff
- Code of ethics and implementation plan
Report to the board on organization’s finances at each board meeting or at least quarterly.
File 990 accurately and promptly and put it on your website.
Have an annual audit and change auditor (or the person actually doing the audit) every few years.
Establish board standing committees for finance, audit and resource development.
Be careful to observe best practices on CEO and staff compensation. Paying the CEO the equivalent of half your budget probably won’t pass the sniff test.
Put your audited statements, 990, code of ethics, statement of values and your annual report on your website. The more information you provide, the more people will trust you.
This should get you started. If you think you need to learn more before you can do this work, please take a look at our workshops, where you or your staff members can learn more. If you find that you don’t have the time or staff who can take on the work, you may need to hire professional help. In that case, give us a call.
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