A new three-part series sponsored by the Center for Healthy Profits for nonprofit executives, senior staff, and board leaders presented by Ted Bilich, CEO of Risk Alternatives, an east coast-based consulting group that works with nonprofits, startups, small businesses, and nonprofit funders to help them grow and succeed using risk management and process management tools.

Most nonprofits wish they had an “early-warning system” to help them see trouble before it becomes a crisis and capture opportunities before they pass by. That’s the essence of effective risk management. Risk Alternatives is here to help, drawing on decades of practical experience based on work with hundreds of nonprofits, funded by leading foundations and other grantors across the US. With Risk Alternatives’ Resilience Workshop Series, you will obtain practical tools to improve decision-making in times of profound uncertainty. Plus, you gain powerful insight into the risks facing your organization and how you compare to others.

These workshops are premised on two facts supported by solid research: nonprofits need to embed risk management in their culture, but they often don’t understand what this means or how to begin. While risk management was always important, it has become critical in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. These workshops make a profound difference in nonprofit operations and give participants clarity, peace of mind, and value.

These workshops will be high energy, interactive online sessions over Zoom where you will be actively engaged. Participants are active thought-partners who share their own experiences while expressing vulnerabilities in a supportive environment.

These sessions are scheduled over a series of successive weeks. While it is possible to register for only one or two of the sessions, we’d like to encourage participants to register and attend all three sessions for maximum benefit.

Participating nonprofits are automatically admitted to Risk Alternatives’ special online portal, Nonprofits Build Strength Together (BeST). There, you will interact with Risk Alternatives, other experts in the nonprofit sector, and fellow nonprofits who want to build resilience and sustainability over time. It’s like Facebook for nonprofits – without all the junk.

Workshop #1: Resilience 101 provides practical tools nonprofits can use to create an “early-warning” system to avoid unforced errors and capture opportunities for improvements.

When: Tuesday, April 5, 2022 10:00am – 11:30 am | Register here.

  • Participants gain a common vocabulary and understanding of risk management and process improvement, so you can minimize costly, time consuming surprises that undermine your mission.
  • You will learn about the risk inventory, which gives you visibility into uncertain events that can affect your organization. (At the end of the session, you will receive materials detailing how to perform a risk inventory with your teams for free.)
  • You will discover how to prioritize your risks so you can actively mitigate the highest value threats and develop opportunities into new initiatives.
  • You will find out how to institutionalize a robust risk management process.

Workshop #2: Business Continuity Planning provides an actionable template nonprofits can use to prepare for the inevitable accidents and business interruptions that will occur even with effective risk management.

When: Tuesday, April 19, 2022 10:00am – 11:30am | Register here.

  • Having an early warning process (Workshop #1) is critical, but what happens when you face the unexpected? Resilience requires a business continuity plan that helps you notify crucial personnel, triage your operations, and access important support assets. This plan cannot be long, because in an emergency nobody can use a long manual. Instead, in this session you will work through a short template that focuses on the most important aspects of emergency response.

Workshop #3: Lean Scenario Planning provides a process nonprofits can use to ask powerful questions about potential futures so that they can be more agile in the present.

When: Tuesday, May 3, 2022 10:00 am – 11:30am | Register here.

  • Nobody knows what will happen next, but we make better decisions in the present if we reflect on possible futures. Using Risk Alternatives’ proprietary “lean scenario planning” model, participants learn a simple, robust process they can apply to make better decisions in the face of uncertainty.
  • Participants leave this workshop with thought-provoking scenarios you can use with your own organizations.

About the Presenter:

Risk Alternatives relies on the skills of its founder and CEO, Ted Bilich, and his network. Ted’s experience includes the following:

  • More than 30 years providing risk management research, training, and counseling.
  • More than 20 years of experience in teaching, including designing classes, teaching large and small groups, and developing active learning environments.
  • More than 20 years counseling individuals and organizations facing complex business and dispute resolution issues, including governance and compliance challenges.
  • More than 25 years on non-profit boards, associational committees, and government commissions.

Before founding Risk Alternatives, Ted was a Distinguished Visiting Professor from Practice at Georgetown University Law Center. Prior to that, Ted spent more than 20 years in the Washington DC office of the international law firm of Jones Day. He is a member of the American Law Institute, where he serves on the Member Consultative Group for the ALI’s current project on Principles of the Law: Compliance, Enforcement, and Risk Management for Corporations, Nonprofits, and Other Organizations.

Ted has served on the Arlington Economic Development Commission and the boards of the Leadership Center for Excellence, Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, Northern Virginia Conservation Trust, Latino Student Fund, Washington Humane Society, and the Hispanic Bar Association of DC Foundation, and was a member of the DC Bar Litigation Section Steering Committee.

Ted speaks regularly before large and small groups throughout the United States on risk management, board governance, civic engagement, ethics, and numerous other issues. He is the author of three editions of a leading law school casebook on class actions and other multi-party dispute resolution.

He received his B.A. in economics summa cum laude from Wake Forest University, and his J.D. cum laude from Harvard Law School.

Ted is a Standards for Excellence® Licensed Consultant, having completed an exclusive professional development initiative that gives independent consultants the knowledge, skills, and tools necessary to work with nonprofit organizations across the country interested in learning about and implementing the Standards for Excellence code.