The Matrix Map is a visual representation of how your organization’s business lines work together to create impact and financial viability. A simple, yet powerful tool for articulating your business model. More than just a picture though, the Matrix Map provides strategic provides strategic imperatives to strengthen your business model. The map can be used to engage board and staff alike in analyzing challenges and opportunities and making ongoing strategic decisions that integrate mission impact and financial profitability and set the organization on a path toward greater sustainability.
Nonprofit organizations have more responsibility than generating resources to be financially viable – they must also have an impact. As such, nonprofit business models differ from for-profit business models in that they explicitly contain two components: mission impact and financial profitability. Every activity that an organization engages in directly affects both of these components. Therefore, every decision an organization makes also impacts both of these components.
Boards of Directors and senior leadership are used to understanding each individual component of an organization, but they rarely put them together to see how they relate as a whole. The Matrix Map represents a visual depiction of an organization’s business model with every activity mapped on both mission impact and financial profitability. In doing so, you can see how your activities inter-relate and make decisions to strengthen not only individual activities, but the organization as a whole.
The Matrix Map does more than just showcase the organization’s business model, however. It also provides strategic imperatives for each activity based on its placement in the map. While an organization does not have to implement the strategic imperative, they are offered as a starting place to engage discussion.
The Matrix Map helps guide the nonprofit’s strategic planning and integrates it into everyday decision making. The Map shows how the organization has impact, remains financially viable and can be used to assess how new opportunities or challenges could potentially help or hurt the organization. This shared understanding allows strategic discussion and, ultimately, ongoing strategic decision making to help the organization. By gaining a clear understanding of how the organization accomplishes its mission and generates and allocates resources, board members will be prepared to meet the challenges that an organization faces.
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