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Building High Impact Nonprofits and Social Enterprises

General Assembly

Tuesday, October 16, 2012 at 8:00 PM - Saturday, December 8, 2012 at 11:55 PM (EDT)

New York, NY

Ticket Information

Ticket Type Sales End Price Fee Quantity
Session Five (11/29/2012) Ended $35.00 $2.74
Session Three (12/6/2012) Ended $35.00 $2.74

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Event Details

Building High Impact Nonprofits and Social Entreprises: Five Steps to Financial Sustainability
Social Innovators Collective + General Assembly

Session 1: Tuesday, October 16 from 8 – 9:30 - Funding Your Social Good Organization
Session 2: Tuesday, October 23 from 8 – 9:30 : Social Good Business Models
Session 3: Tuesday, October 30 from 8 – 9:30 - How To Choose A Legal Structure
Session 4: Wednesday, November 7 from 8 – 9:30 - Evaluation & Impact Assessment
Session 5: Wednesday, November 14 from 8 – 9:30 - Introduction to Strategy for Changemakers

This series was produced by Shana Dressler, Founder, Social Innovators Collective

For our third workshop series, we will explain the essential building blocks a startup social change organization needs to master in order to grow. Designed for social innovators, each class builds on the next and therefore, we recommend students sign up for the entire series. Don’t have enough time? À la carte will serve up great value as well.
 
Each class will begin with a 60 minute presentation taught by top notch professionals in their field. An interactive breakout session so that students can immediately apply what they’ve learned to their own venture. The workshop will end with a Q&A and time to network with other change-makers.

The series was created to support impact-driven startups and emerging change-makers as well as professionals interested in learning more before they dive into building their own venture.

Session 1: Tuesday, October 16 from 8 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Funding Your Social Good Organization
Instructor: Freeman White, CEO and Founder of Launcht

This workshop will cover strategies to help you grow your business in its first two years without significant angel investment or venture capital funding. The workshop helps you lay the groundwork to use crowdfunding, competition grants, friends and family funding, bootstrapping, and self-funding strategies. We will compare these methods to angel investment and venture capital investment strategies for financing growth. The workshop will be more practical than theoretical. To this end, we will cover each financing strategy, spend time considering which strategy is best for your business or nonprofit, and outline your pitch and plan of action.

This class is designed for both social enterprises and nonprofits.

Student Takeaways:

  • Learn how to bootstrap your business through its first two years.
  • Understand and prepare for crowdfunding, competitive award cycles, and early revenue models.
  • Prepare your pitch and receive feedback on how to use it.
  • Leave the class with clear next steps for how to proceed towards the financing strategy that works for you.


Freeman White, the CEO and Co-Founder of Launcht.com, believes that social entrepreneurs are our best hope for solving the biggest problems in the world. After college he dove headfirst into the world of education and education reform and he was named a StartingBloc fellow in 2005. Since then he has worked as an architect and builder of cloud computing solutions to support the work of socially responsible businesses. He is founding member and one of the four executives leading the Crowdfunding Intermediary Regulatory Advocates (CFIRA.org).

Session 2: Tuesday, October 23 from 8 p.m.– 9:30 p.m.

Social Good Business Models
Instructor: Ian Fisk, Executive Director of the William James Foundation

Choosing the right business model could be the difference between success and failure for a social innovator launching a new venture. In the social good world, where many founders struggle with the business side of their enterprise building, this class will break down the various business models to know. Students will learn about traditional and emerging new models through specific case studies of successful social good business and nonprofit organizations.

This class is designed for both social enterprises and nonprofits.
  
Student Takeaways:
 

  • Understand the difference between a business model, a legal structure, and how a business plan relates to a business model.
  • Clarify what types of funding is available for various business models.
  • Receive guidelines on how to evaluate whether your existing business model makes sense for the impact you want to achieve.


Ian Fisk is Executive Director of the William James Foundation (WJF). The WJF educates and supports entrepreneurs with for-profit businesses that have built social and/or environmental values into their revenue. For the past ten years, the WJF has managed sustainable business plan competitions, working with their network of more than 700 mentors and sponsors to provide constructive feedback and prizes to the entrepreneurs. Mr. Fisk has also consulted with many other organizations on the design and implementation of business plan competitions, mentoring networks, and educational programs for entrepreneurs.

Session 3: Tuesday, October 30 from 8 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

How To Choose A Legal Structure
Instructor: Carly Leinheiser, Esq., Perlman and Perlman, LLP

There are few firms that understand the range of legal structures available for social enterprises and nonprofit organizations like Perlman and Perlman, LLP. This workshop demystifies legal structures such as 501(c)(3), L3C, benefit corporations, B Corp certification, LLCs, and other corporate entities. You will leave this session with a greater knowledge of corporate structures so you can make informed choices in establishing your social enterprise or nonprofit.

Student Takeaways:

  • Understand the various corporate structures available to social entrepreneurs, including the benefits and drawbacks of selecting a particular structure.
  • Learn about the steps to establish a new corporate entity, and your legal obligations as you build your social enterprise or nonprofit.
  • Learn about the contracts and agreements you may encounter in your first year of running a social enterprise organization.
  • Find out about legal resources available to nonprofit organizations and social enterprises.



Session 4: Wednesday, November 7 from 8 – 9:30

Evaluation & Impact Assessment
Instructor: Todd Schechter, MPA

Few change-makers realize how important it is to assess and communicate the impact their organization is having. In the competitive landscape of today, learning how to evaluate your work and assess your impact is just as important as reporting on an organization’s bottom line. With the knowledge of how to communicate your venture’s impact, you'll increase the chances of securing significant funding. With a wealth of data, your future funders and investors will feel that your venture is worthy of their support. What should you be measuring and how should you measure it? How do you even start thinking this through? This class will answer these question and more. The material presented will prepare you so that when you're ready to seek more funding from foundations and impact investors you'll have the building blocks to make a compelling case. 

Student Takeaways:

  • Learn about the difference between measurement and evaluation.
  • Assess what you data you need to begin collecting in your startup year.
  • Discover how these tools provide a road map on what to measure.
  • Learn about how leading organizations articulate how what they do is connected to outcomes.


Todd Schechter is a social entrepreneur and the founder of The New American Tavern. He has worked as a strategy and organizational development consultant with Fortune 500 companies, nonprofit organizations, and local governments. Previously he worked as an international documentary television producer. Todd earned his a Master of Public Administration from the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at NYU.
Session 5: Wednesday, November 14 from 8 p.m.– 9:30 p.m.

Introduction to Strategy for Changemakers
Instructor: Lee-Sean Huang, Strategist, Purpose

The word “strategy” originates from the battlefield, but we now use it in the context of social innovation. Defined as “a plan of action designed to achieve a goal,” strategy could be a plan for directing troops and military operations to win a war or for figuring out a way to make your social venture succeed. “Figuring things out as they come along” is a kind of strategy, but it is not often the most effective one. 

In this class, you will learn how to make a strategic plan that works for you. Developing a robust strategic plan will equip you with a compass to guide you build your venture, help you make decisions, and increase your chances of success.

Student Takeaways:

  • Demystify and define the term “strategy.”
  • Understand why strategy is essential during all stages of your project.
  • Learn how strategy can help you take control of your workflow and the outcomes of your actions. 
  • Leave with a simple set of frameworks you can apply to your strategic process.

About the Organizer:

Shana Dressler is the founder of the Social Innovators Collective, an international network of emerging founders and professionals who work in the social enterprise and nonprofit sectors. The Social Innovators Collective's mission is to train and nurture the next wave of social change leaders so that they can demonstrate both measurable impact and achieve financially sustainability. In addition to producing workshops on nonprofit and social enterprise business development at General Assembly, Shana has designed bootcamps hosted at Parsons School of Design, produced panels of social good industry experts at Social Media Week and created classes for Internet Week NYC, Skillshare's Penny Conference and School of Visual Art’s program, Impact Design for Social Change. This fall she will be launching an education platform for changemakers. An expert on ethically sourced cacao, she was recently appointed as a judge for the International Chocolate Awards. You can follow her @sic_org and @shanadressler.

Outreach Partners:
Have questions about Building High Impact Nonprofits and Social Enterprises? Contact General Assembly

When & Where



General Assembly West
10 E 21st St
New York, NY 10010

Tuesday, October 16, 2012 at 8:00 PM - Saturday, December 8, 2012 at 11:55 PM (EDT)


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General Assembly

General Assembly is a campus for technology, design, and entrepreneurship. We provide educational programming, space, and support to facilitate collaborative practices and learning opportunities across a community inspired by the entrepreneurial experience.

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