How to Keep Nonprofit Employees Happy and Engaged

Tsk, tsk, tsk. Nonprofits do not seem to be providing the essentials their employees want. Of the top 10 organizational characteristics deemed “essential” in the Good NonProfit Job Report by Professionals for Nonprofits, most were not provided by the current employers of respondents.

nonprofit employee retention, nonprofit salaries, nonprofit managementThe exception: compelling mission. Most glaring disparities among the “essentials” people needed and what they got were:

  • internal politics interfering with work
  • salaries and benefits less than similar organizations
  • inconsistent or unfair job review processes
  • hard work and outstanding performance not recognized
  • atmosphere of innovation and creativity is missing
  • ideas and input not encouraged
  • no clear vision communicated by management

With the exception of salaries and benefits which are subject to the vagaries of funding, the items on the list are under management control. That’s sad.

Perhaps some of the disparity comes from not having dedicated Human Resources departments, as reported by Idealist.org.

The Professionals for Nonprofits report had a few other surprises:

  • Employees older than 50 were more likely to want the ability to work independently and to have a fair and consistent review process. But 50% of them deemed teamwork and collaboration essential.
  • For employees between 25 and 49, respect and support management ranked highest, followed by fiscal stability of the organization. Teamwork was essential to 43% in this age group.
  • For those under 25, compelling mission and R-E-S-P-E-C-T ranked highest. Teamwork and collaboration didn’t make the top 10 list.

And here we’ve all been thinking that the Millennials are the collaborative generation.

What do you most value in a job?

If you like this article, you may also like:
Employee Engagement Is Key to a Winning Workplace
Nonprofits Have Become Socially Irresponsible
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work values

Respect, independence and flexibility

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