March 27, 2017

How to Stop Mission Creep Now

How to keep the creep out of your nonprofit.

face cracking decorativeWhat is mission creep or drift? A disease that inflicts nonprofits that chase after money. Why is mission creep such a dread disease? You waste energy for short-term gain that you otherwise would invest to gain a sustainable income. 

Karen’s Mission Creep Stopper

When you identify a new revenue opportunity, use this question to avoid mission drift. 

If it wasn’t for the money, would we do this? 

 A “no” indicates mission drift. Still baffled? Try:   

  • Diving Deep into Your Mission. Get clear. What is your work? What belongs to others? Try drawing a picture. Now, ask Karen’s Mission Stopper question.
  • Seeking Counsel. Ask a trusted, astute outsider, such as a foundation staff, retired competitor, or consultant. Outline the opportunity. Share how it might enhance your mission. Are they convinced?  Do they think you might be dealing with mission drift?

Inoculate Yourself Against the Creep 

Do you know the ultimate cure for mission creep? A steady focus on the activities you know will bring your sustainability and more. To identify your best options, determine your income strategy. My book, 7 Nonprofit Income Streams outlines how to create customized strategies.  Read the first chapter for free.


Karen Eber Davis

Karen Eber Davis provides customized advising and coaching around nonprofit strategy and board development. People leaders hire her to bring clarity to sticky situations, break through barriers that seem insurmountable, and align people for better futures. She is the author of 7 Nonprofit Income Streams and Let's Raise Nonprofit Millions Together.


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