10 Elements Of A Successful Nonprofit Executive Director

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We all work hard. But it’s the executive director, or CEO, at our nonprofit that is there before everyone else to open the doors, and turns the lights out at night. Let’s be honest, they’re almost always the hardest working people at our nonprofit.


And they should be. They’re often the founders of the nonprofit, and are the ones who are most committed to completing their mission. The executive director, before anyone else, is responsible for the success of the nonprofit. They’re the person everyone looks to for direction, guidance, and help.


So what makes an executive director successful? Or, what makes a nonprofit CEO more successful than another? In October of 2014, at the Association of Fundraising Professionals International Conference, the Nonprofit Times caught up with Thomas W. Mesaros CEO of the Alfrod Group, and Sharon Moulds, executive director and CEO of the Chief Seattle Council of the Boy Scouts of America. Between the two of them, they came up with a list of 10 traits that make up a successful nonprofit executive.


What do you think of their list? Let us know in the comment section below.

  1. Do not dally.

  2. There is always more to learn.

  3. In the long run, finances are crucial to the organization’s success.

  4. A CEO will always be remembered for programmatic results.

  5. Others will be looking to the CEO for leadership and direction. Give it to them.

  6. Focus on fulfillment of the organization’s mission.

  7. Inspire others to see the long term.

  8. Be strategic rather than tactical, but remember that tactics are important to achieve results.

  9. Delegate.

  10. Hold others accountable

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Topics: General, Industry News, Tech

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