This chapter provides an overview of the nonprofit organization in the United States, the main characteristics of nonprofit organizations, and the reality of the nonprofit sector today. It describes the differences between a nonprofit and a for-profit corporation. Nonprofit organizations have existed for many centuries, especially through religious groups or religious-based activities. The nongovernmental sector is growing throughout the world. Increasingly, these organizations are playing key roles in the economic and social contexts of their countries. Unlike private-sector organizations concerned primarily with making a profit, nonprofit organizations are focused on carrying out a specific public-service mission. Successful nonprofit organizations require substantial capability in key areas of management: developing strong boards of directors, recruiting and motivating talented staff and volunteers, creating plans to focus resources on relevant goals and innovative programs, winning the support of diverse stakeholders, raising funds, and wisely managing fiscal and human resources.
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This chapter discusses the term “service delivery” and describes a service delivery system in the context of a nonprofit organization. Servitization is the process whereby an organization develops creative and innovative ways to create a product-service system that integrates value-based products and service offerings. The chapter discusses the roles of client-centeredness, decision making, scheduling, priority setting, effective and efficient flow of services or activities, quality assurance, and continuing quality improvement, and how these factors contribute in their own context to influence positively or negatively the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. A customer-centric service design is a service delivery system that focuses on providing the best quality service possible to customers or clients or the service target, based on a service concept, a service decision path, service sustainability, and service quality. The chapter explains the relationship between service delivery and financial sustainability.
This chapter discusses both successes and failures in affiliation and collaboration techniques among nonprofits, including details on what the parties involved found to be the most valuable or most problematic aspects of the affiliations. It explores an overview of what has been and is versus what could be in the business models for both the nonprofit and the for-profit sectors, with the aim of shaking things up in the nonprofit world’s business-as-usual model. Clearly, a new business model is needed for the new paradigm, one that enables nonprofit organizations to adapt to the industry’s greater demands and the emerging market for corporate control without sacrificing core values. Capitalizing on the opportunities presented by the new human service paradigm will require nonprofit providers to adopt a new business model that is both capable of pursuing traditional consolidation strategies and supported by innovative organizational and financial designs.
- Go to chapter: Administrative Consolidations, Administrative Services Organizations, and Joint Programming
This chapter focuses on a series of case studies and best practices for partnerships that discuss in detail the provision of back-office support for nonprofit partners. Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC) is a nonprofit public health institute that creates and sustains healthier communities using best practices to improve community health through direct service, partnership, innovation, policy, research, technical assistance, and a prepared work force. Traditional back-office services are usually designed to address many of the challenges of today’s changing nonprofit environment. Services depend on the level of organizational need and affordability, but are usually identified through a comprehensive organizational assessment of the nonprofit client. The Urban Affairs Coalition (UAC) is a Philadelphia-based nonprofit that was founded in 1969 following a historic meeting between the city’s business and community leaders. Most nonprofits never rise to the scale of having a full internal administrative staff and purchased equipment.
For nonprofit agencies, there are generally two ways of growing: organically, which takes longer and is more detailed, or through strategic partnerships with other nonprofits. This chapter focuses on a wide range of strategic partnerships. Few nonprofits in the sector, other than hospitals and insurers, enter into strategic partnerships, and far fewer merge or affiliate with other nonprofits. The Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC), however, is one of the rare nonprofit health and human service organizations that has been engaged in mergers and affiliations in the past 20 years. Environmental factors such as increased organizational competition or decreased foundation or donor funding encourage nonprofits to contemplate mergers. Nonprofit mergers provide a variety of benefits including the opportunity for expanded social impact. Merged nonprofits can roll together annual audits, combine insurance programs, and consolidate staffs and boards. Mergers and affiliations are one way that organizations are attempting to temper competition.
Creativity must represent something different, new, or innovative. It has to be different and also be appropriate to the task at hand. The first chapter of the book deals with the Four-Criterion Construct of Creativity, which attempts to integrate both Western and Eastern conceptions of creativity. This is followed by a chapter which addresses how creativity operates on individual and social/environmental levels, and the effects and outcomes of the creative mind. Chapter 3 discusses the structure of creativity. A key work on creative domains is that of Carson, Peterson, and Higgins, who devised the creativity achievement questionnaire (CAQ) to assess 10 domains. The fourth chapter discusses measures of creativity and divergent thinking tests, Torrance Tests, Evaluation of Potential Creativity (EPOC) and Finke Creative Invention Task. Some popular personality measures use different theories, such as Eysenck’s Personality Questionnaire, which looks at extraversion, neuroticism and psychoticism. Chapter 6 focuses on a key issue, intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation and their relationship to creativity. While the seventh chapter deals with the relationship between creativity and intelligence, the eighth chapter describes three ’classic’ studies of creativity and mental illness which focus on the connection between bipolar disorder and creativity, usage of structured interviews and utilization of historiometric technique. One school admissions area that already uses creativity is gifted admissions—which students are chosen to enter gifted classes, programs, or after-school activities. The book also talks about creative perceptions and dwells upon the question whether creativity is good or bad.
As everyone knows, true creativity comes from simple formulas and the memorization of data. This chapter focuses on divergent thinking tests, which are still the most common way that creativity is measured. Guilford derived the core ideas behind divergent thinking as well as many popular measures. The people who score the Torrance Tests are specifically trained to distinguish responses that are truly original from those that are just bizarre. There are other tests that measure creativity, but most are either a variation on divergent thinking or use some type of raters. For example, the Evaluation of Potential Creativity (EPOC) has begun to be used in some studies and may be promising, but is still largely rooted in a mix of divergent thinking scoring and raters. Another test is the Finke Creative Invention Task, which is clever but also requires raters for scoring.
The Big Five, which this chapter discusses in more detail, are extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness to experience. Each of these five factors represents a continuum of behavior, traits, and inclinations. There are some popular personality measures that use different theories, such as Eysenck’s Personality Questionnaire, which looks at extraversion and neuroticism as well as psychoticism. The personality factor most associated with creativity is openness to experience. Indeed, one way that researchers study creativity is by giving creative personality tests. Being open to new experiences may also help creative people be more productive. King found that people who were creative and high on openness to experience were more likely to report creative accomplishments. DeYoung and S. B. Kaufman, of course, are not the only people to blend or split different factors of personality to present new models. Fürst, Ghisletta, and Lubart suggest three factors: plasticity, divergence, and convergence.
This chapter explores three ’classic’ studies of creativity and mental illness. The first is Jamison whose focus is on the connection between bipolar disorder and creativity. The second is Andreasen, who used structured interviews to analyze 30 creative writers, 30 matched controls, and first-degree relatives of each group. The writers had a higher rate of mental illness, with a particular tendency toward bipolar and other affective disorders. The third major work is Ludwig, who utilized the historiometric technique. All three studies have come under serious criticism. Many of the studies of Big-C creators are historiometric, akin to Ludwig’s work. Some such studies claim that eminent creators show higher rates of mental illness. A much more common approach is to look at everyday people and give them measures of creativity and mental health. Typically, researchers look at what are called subclinical disorders—in other words, they’re not clinically significant.
One school admissions area that already uses creativity is gifted admissions—which students are chosen to enter gifted classes, programs, or after-school activities. Both education and business play great lip service to creativity. Puccio and Cabra review the literature on creativity and organizations and do a nice job of highlighting how every couple of years, a new report from industry emphasizes the importance of creativity. It is important to note that there is a large inconsistency between gender differences on creativity tests and actual creative accomplishment. Although gender differences on creativity tests are minor or nonexistent, differences in real-world creative accomplishment are large and significant. This chapter shows how creativity can play a role in admissions and hiring. Hiring measures tend to have better validity, even the general mental ability (GMA) measures; even if minorities score lower, the accuracy of prediction is consistent by ethnicity.