Preparation is Key to Navigating Crisis

Drexel University’s Gupta Governance Institute and Grant Thornton’s biweekly Nonprofit Directors Dialogue Miniseries features nonprofit leaders and board members as they share insights and strategies for turning today’s challenges into tomorrow’s successes.

What are the lessons learned from the tumultuous events of 2020 that nonprofits and their boards can carry forward into 2021 and 2022?

We had to move quickly to actually change our priorities as an organization and to set new goals and objectives. We were doing that real time, because we had to do it, and could not take our eye off the ball. We very quickly took a pool of money that is being used for grantmaking. It’s responsive, so it’s available 24 hours a day, seven days a week online for people to access. We just changed the priority to total COVID-19 response.

So again, the idea of act early and rapid response. Overall being prepared is one of the most important things. As a leader during a pandemic, you need to exercise the fundamental lesson learned for years throughout our childhood, to be prepared, and always ready for a crisis. This crisis was a little different, but we needed some of the same ingredients to respond as a staff and as an organization that we would use for any crisis.