Are you a Board or Leadership Team thinking about your budget?
If you are, there’s a decent chance you’re looking at a deficit budget now or down the line. If you’re like most of the sector you’re striving to achieve a balanced or small surplus – it reduces risk and ensures sustainability. It is informed by good business thinking. However, for some social purpose organisations this can also cause limitations in your thinking: It ignores the peaks and troughs due to funding cycles and it forces you into 1-year budget cycle thinking against a 5-10 year social change horizon.
What are the alternatives? One of the conversation threads we’ve seen unlock deeper reflection is considering whether there is a case for an Investment Budget perspective. What this mindset might deliver is space to invest in innovation or transformation as a short-term strategy which will repay itself. Can you argue that over time the net effect is flat? Can you be both ambitious and responsible?
(NB. This is a good example of where team communication agility helps you travel further and faster. When the challenges are limited to the strategic ones not interpersonal ones you have more bandwidth for the legitimately tough conversations!) Find out more about our work with Executive Teams.