Resources for the Bulk of Nonprofit Workers — Women
If I were to ask you the percentage of women who work in the nonprofit sector, what would you guess? Fifty percent? Seventy percent? Think higher. In 2019, women made up 85% of the workforce in the nonprofit sector. That's an astounding number. Business and nonprofit leaders must ensure that they find ways to accommodate and support women who often carry much more of their families' burden.
I'm someone who firmly believes that out of every challenge and tough situation, there's always something good that could come out of it. For example, by reading and speaking to people in the nonprofit industry, organizations have understood that to retain people to get the job done, in this case — women, they had to become more flexible.
As a result, remote working became a benefit that could potentially be an option for women who’ve had to take up the bulk of holding onto their jobs while also being the primary caregivers to children who had their education disrupted. Flexible work schedules also rose to the forefront as a high-quality benefit for workers, particularly women who are often the primary caregivers and paid continuing education.
So, what resources exist for women and leaders to help them develop professionally? I asked the marketing team (all women) of our social enterprise brands to create a list, and below is what they suggested. Please note that not all resources are specifically related to the nonprofit sector, which is great because different experiences and disciplines help inform new ideas and ways of doing things.
1. Podcasts Targeted to Women in Business
As was mentioned in this article, women picked up more than their fair share of the load during the pandemic, making it tougher to achieve professional success. Life Rebalanced Podcast seeks to support "highly driven women in pursuit of continued personal and professional growth.” Moreover, the podcasts address how women could reprioritize in practical ways using technology through mindset and habit formation.
Girlboss Radio With Sophia Amoruso targets women in business. The podcast is an opportunity for women to learn from other women who've blazed their paths and developed companies. As we know, many women want to develop successful nonprofit organizations, so understanding and learning how others have built companies is good for knowing how to overcome the obstacles that inevitably lie in every entrepreneur — even one who is a nonprofit executive.
2. TED Talks Resources
TED Talks remain an excellent way for people to gain new insights. One of the TED Talks, especially if you’re a woman in a leadership role, or want to be there, is 6 Essential Lessons for Women Leaders. In the TED Talk, former Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard and former Finance Minister of Nigeria Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala reflect on their professional lives as global leaders in global power positions. They also share six lessons to help women lead despite gender bias.
Although recorded in 2018, nearly 1.9 million people watched this TED Talk. Empower a Girl, Transform a Community is led by Kakenya Ntaiya, who wanted to get an education in Kenya. She achieved that goal and started a movement to help empower vulnerable girls. In the process, she also created the Kakenya Center for Excellence, allowing girls to receive an essential education in a supportive community.
3. Nonprofit AF
Finally, although this resource isn't explicitly targeted to women, it's still an excellent place to go for professional women in the nonprofit sector. For example, Nonprofit AF has a section on their website that consists of support groups for professionals in the nonprofit sector. As we know, society — including the nonprofit sector — is on the path to rectifying racial biases. One of the groups is specific for executive directors of color.
Nonprofit AF also has a very active presence and community on Facebook. It's a perfect space to discuss matters directly related to the nonprofit sector. For instance, one of their recent posts addressed the issue of "sunsetting" organizations. In other words, nonprofits exist to close their doors because they achieved their missions. Another had to do with lousy funding practices and the end of the archaic nonprofit board paradigm.
Wayne Elsey is the founder and CEO of Elsey Enterprises. Among his various independent brands, he is also the founder and CEO of Funds2Orgs, a social enterprise that helps nonprofits, schools, churches, civic groups, individuals and others raise funds, while helping to support micro-enterprise (small business) opportunities in developing nations and the environment.
You can learn more about Wayne and obtain free resources, including his books on his blog, Not Your Father’s Charity.