Create a Wishlist

Tuesday October 27, 2020 comments Tags: Budgets, CNRG Accounting Advisory, Chyla Graham, Development, Nonprofit, Training, Masterclass, Work

Any accounting business or tax advice in this podcast is not intended as a thorough in depth analysis of specific issues, nor substitute for a formal opinion, nor is it sufficient to avoid tax related penalties. If you need any help with that, please reach out.

Are you ready for another masterclass? So November 10th at 1:00 PM Mountain, we are doing the Budget Best Practices and Development Workshop. Join me so that we can go through an outline for your next budget, talk about steps for developing a budget that speaks to your priorities and timelines. 

For some of you, you feel like, "Oh, my gosh, we're already midway through." Join us anyway. I want to make sure that you stay on track. And, of course, during our masterclasses, I'm here to answer questions that you have. So, if there's anything that you're like, "How do we budget for that?" Join us. If there's a piece that you're like, "How do we get some buy-in for that?" Join us. I want to support you. I want to be here for you. And I want you to go into 2021 with more clarity, with more strategic planning, with more confidence in the budget that you have.  So, again, November 10th at 1:00 PM Mountain, and join me for the one-hour masterclass.

It's Chyla Graham, CNRG Accounting Advisory. We are back for another episode of the Nonprofit Nuggets Podcast. And this season, we are talking about budgets. If you wait for "budget season," whatever that timeframe is for your organization, to think about money, to think about plans, you, in my opinion, have waited too long. You waited too long because budget season is the most stressful time for most organizations. It is the time when people are just trying to figure out, well, how do we get this done? How do we come in under budget? How do we, how do we, how do we, there's so many things that you're stressed out about. What I truly believe is that you should actually just create an ongoing wishlist. One person should not be responsible for the budget. Instead, put the power onto whoever the team is.

If those are some key volunteers, if those are some board members, have everyone create a list of what are the things that you think we should do? What are the resources you think we should tap into? What are the programs we need to develop? What are the, what are the, what are the, create that list. What could we do if we had this thing. By creating that list, this ongoing wishlist, as well, what would it take? What do we need access to? Do we need another staff member? Do we need to pay our executive to be there full time? By doing that on an ongoing basis, when it's time to put the budget together, you're actually putting together all these ideas in one place, as opposed to working on a, let's do a brain dump right now in the moment and have it done in three hours.

That type of time crunch doesn't allow your brain to rest. It doesn't allow you to absorb information and process it. So our brains process... It's when we rest that we truly process things. That's why sleep is important. That's why taking breaks are important. And that's why I think that you should do your budget as an ongoing wishlist. So think of it as throughout the year, as we talk about things, as we have team meetings, we're creating this document of what are the things that we think we'll accomplish for the upcoming year. Some organizations decided to do it as like a team retreat. That's what we do at CNRG where I will say, these are all the ideas that I've had coming up. Give me your feedback. What's a good idea. What's a bad idea. What's something you've seen work somewhere else that we might be able to implement.

By doing that. You give yourself time to really think over those ideas. Think over those plans before you have to say, what are we committing to? So, that's my homework for you. Is to create that ongoing wishlist. And don't just create a list of like, "Oh my gosh, I would really love us to have an administrative assistant." Think also about what will having this administrative assistant do. What will having an administrative assistant allow us to accomplish. By thinking about those things, what are we going to accomplish? What is going to be the result of having this person or this program, this software? You can now evaluate, is that accomplishment a key priority for you. So that's what your homework had been before, it was, what are your key priorities? All the things that you're saying that you want on the wishlist, highlight those items that truly address those accomplishments.

You might find that some things sound nice, but you don't need right now. And some things you didn't think you needed, but you actually do because they will get you closer to some of those key priorities. So that is your homework. Work on that wishlist. Talk to other board members, talk to the team, be that volunteers or paid people. Because you want to make sure that you have all the information in hand to figure this out and that your budget, when you're sitting to create the actual budget, you are not still wondering, "Oh, well, how much will that cost?" "What else will we need?" That's not necessarily the time, during that budget session isn't necessarily the time to do that. So until next time, go ahead, create your wishlist. Bye.


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