Enterprising Nonprofits: Revenue Generation in the Nonprofit Sector

Nonprofit managers who develop social purpose ventures to generate revenues to support a social mission have limited opportunities to share their experiences with others in the field or to learn from the experiences of others. Many nonprofit managers also have modest business backgrounds. Yet, despite these challenges, the movement toward income generation by nonprofits continues to grow. Some of these ventures succeed, yet many more fail to meet either their social or financial goals. Clearly, the field lacks well-defined criteria, standards, and strategies for achieving success in this area. The potential payoff from the diffusion of learning appears to be substantial. This paper offers a first step in the process.

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