If you are like so many passionate, nonprofit folks, finances and accounting are not your forte. Unfortunately for you and your nonprofit, this can be a serious problem.
Like you, I would rather be at the dentist than reviewing financial statements. However, reading and understanding financial statements is one of the many important responsibilities of development and executive staff members and a necessary evil of running a great nonprofit.
An Amazing Resource for Nonprofit Financial Management
The good news is that help is here. When I took accounting in both college and graduate school, it was like having teeth pulled, so it was a complete and total shock to me to find myself enjoying, yes enjoying, Charles Coe’s new book, Nonprofit Financial Management: A Practical Guide, published by Wiley this year.
Coe breaks down the complex concepts of accounting and reviews all types of financial terms and statements. I have highlights and underlines on almost every page of my copy, and I’m sure you will too. This book would make a great gift for your staff and board members (who should have at least a basic understanding of your finances).
Chapter titles include:
- Manage the Audit
- Evaluate Financial Condition
- Prepare and Manage the Budget
- Plus so many more useful topics.
Coe starts with the basics, for example, the difference between restricted, temporarily restricted and unrestricted funds and moves on from there. He provides examples of budgets and decodes things like cash flow statements.
Wiley was kind enough to send me a copy for review, but I would never recommend a book I didn’t like, and will not make one penny, not a single cent, if you buy this book. But I do highly recommend it.
Let me know what you think in the comments.