Executives Hone Nonprofit Strategy at HBS

Harvard Business School hosted more than 150 nonprofit leaders from 18 countries in July for one of the school’s most popular executive education offerings–the week-long Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management (SPNM) program. Developed by the HBS Social Enterprise Initiative in 1995, SPNM enables leaders in the nonprofit sector to take a step back from their day-to-day operations, reflect on their organization’s mission, and develop new strategic frameworks and implementation plans.

“It is essential for nonprofit leaders to regularly examine their strategies in order to manage shifting demands for services and changing operating environments – especially given the financial pressures of today’s difficult economy,” says professor Herman “Dutch” Leonard, Faculty Chair of Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management. “The SPNM program gives nonprofit executive directors the opportunity to reevaluate their mission and goals, and work with HBS faculty to develop skills to strengthen their ability to lead their organizations.”

In class, the SPNM leaders engaged in the School’s renowned participant-centered learning style of teaching, focusing on case studies about nonprofit leaders facing real-life challenges. In addition, participants benefited from the opportunity to network with peers. This year, SPNM participants ranged in age from 27-62 and were from countries all over the globe, including Canada, China, Guyana, Indonesia, New Zealand, the Republic of Kyrgyzstan, and Venezuela.

Click  here for more information about this year’s program and here to listen to interviews with two of its participants.


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