Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up, and Make a Difference

Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up, and Make a Difference

by Kathleen Kelly Janus


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Kathleen Kelly Janus, a lecturer at the Stanford University Program on Social Entrepreneurship and the founder of the successful social enterprise Spark, set out to investigate what makes a startup succeed or fail. She surveyed more than 200 high-performing social entrepreneurs and interviewed dozens of founders. Social Startup Success shares her findings for the legions of entrepreneurs working for social good, revealing how the best organizations get over the revenue hump. How do social ventures scale to over $2 million, Janus's clear benchmark for a social enterprise's sustainability? Janus, tapping into strong connections to the Silicon Valley world where many of these ventures are started or and/or funded, reveals insights from key figures such as DonorsChoose founder Charles Best, charity:water's Scott Harrison, Reshma Saujani of Girls Who Code and many others. Social Startup Success will be social entrepreneurship's essential playbook; the first definitive guide to solving the problem of scale.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780738219905
Publisher: Hachette Books
Publication date: 01/16/2018
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Kathleen Kelly Janus is an award-winning social entrepreneur, author and lecturer at Stanford University, and an expert on philanthropy, millennial engagement and scaling early stage organizations. An attorney, Kathleen is a cofounder of Spark, a nonprofit focused on building a community of young, global citizens promoting gender equality. Since its founding in 2004, Spark has engaged more than 10,000 young professionals nationwide to support grassroots women's organizations. Additionally, she is Chair of the Board of Directors of Accountability Counsel, a startup human rights organization, and informally advises a variety of other nonprofits and social entrepreneurs locally and globally.

Table of Contents

Introduction ix

Part 1 Testing Ideas

1 The Discovery Phase 3

2 Engaging All Stakeholders 24

3 Reframing Failure as Learning 33

Part 2 Measuring Impact

4 Crafting a Compelling Theory of Change 51

5 Maximizing Use of Data 65

6 Making Your Data Tell a Story 82

Part 3 Funding Experimentation

7 Laying the Foundation to Experiment with Earned Income 97

8 Testing Earned-Income Strategies 107

9 Optimizing Fundraising Efforts 121

Part 4 Leading Collaboratively

10 Cultivating Collective Leadership 145

11 Bringing in Senior Leadership Early 164

12 Building an Active Board 173

Part 5 Telling Compelling Stories

13 Creating a Compelling Narrative 188

Conclusion 201

Acknowledgments 203

Appendix A Cast of Characters 207

Appendix B Methodology 222

Appendix C Additional Resources 231

Notes 236

Index 244

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