Ronald McDonald Houses in GeorgiaMaria Williams Southern New HampshireRonald McDonald Houses in GeorgiaDonor attrition is a major concern for not for profit organizations. According to Holloway (2013), retaining donors does not only enhance organizational effectiveness, but also decreases funding challenges affecting many non-profit organizations. In particular, there is a direct association between organizational transparency and contributions in the non-profit industry. Wenjun and Monit (2014) also indicate that not for profit organizations should consider having effective communication strategies in order to keep donors informed of their actions and how an organization utilizes their contributions. Lack of effective communication could result in negative donor perceptions about an organization, leading to high attrition rates. On the contrary, effective communication strategies can improve relationships between non-profit organizations and donors, leading to high donor retention rates and increased contributions. In light of this, this paper analyses leadership and communication strategies employed by Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon Georgia. Leadership StrategiesBoard StructureThe Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon Georgia is headed by a board of directors that comprises of a chairperson, a secretary, a treasury, and members. In 2019, the organization’s board of directors consisted of a total of 13 members (RMHC, 2020b). Different non-profit organizations use different board structures. At the Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, Georgia is a governing board. The board derives its authority from the owners as well as legal act of formation to direct and control the organization’s activities. Just as it is for other Ronald McDonald Houses charters, the board of directors approves budget, hires and evaluates executive staff, develops the organization’s strategic plan, carries out the Chapter’s policy wok, and makes and amends bylaws (RMHC, 2020a).
Thus, the governing board at Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, Georgia sets organizational policies and works directly with the executive director in managing the organization. Human Resource Management StrategiesCurrently, the Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, Georgia board of directors provides leadership through a dedicated team of 9 employees comprising of a chief executive officer, 5 program officers, and 3 development staffs. The program officers comprise of a director of programs, a facilities manager, program administrative assistant, a resident manager, and an evening family services assistant. The development staff include a director of development, a development manager, and a development administrative assistant (RMHC, 2020b). All Ronald McDonald Houses Charters have Board Development Committees that help in figuring out the skill that a board requires, recruiting new members, and ensuring that an organization stays on course with its orientation and knowledge development. For staff utilization, Ronald McDonald Houses employ staff with skills required to support board of directors in their activities plus deliberations. All employees are required to provide accurate, timely, as well as focused information. They also inform the board of directors about new developments; collect and analyze information for effective recommendations; report budget information; take part in board recruitment; and support board committees. With regards to employee retaining and succession planning, all Ronald McDonald Houses Charters including the one in Macon, Georgia have clear requirements for employee retention and evaluation. For organization succession, all Chapters have formal mentoring programs for new board of director members for rapid orientation as well as on-boarding (RMHC, 2020a). Strengths and Weaknesses of Current Leadership StrategiesHaving a formal mentoring program will help in reducing staff turnover which does not only lower employee morale, but also increases workload on remaining workers and affects productivity. On the flip side, the leadership strategy employed at Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, Georgia can stifle employee creativity and innovation. The best thing to do is to allow workers to contribute ideas about how the organization can improve its collections rather than reporting budgeting information. Communication StrategiesOrganizational transparency is closely linked with mutual understanding between an organization and its partners. Hence, not for profit organizations must implement communication strategies that enhance organizational transparency. Organizations are only considered trustworthy if they are transparent. Donors can only trust organizations that are effectively utilizing their contributions (Albu & Wehmeier, 2014). In this regard, different non-profit organizations are utilizing different communication and branding techniques to meet their mission. Communication strategies at Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, GeorgiaThe Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, Georgia uses both verbal and non verbal strategies of communication to promote its values both internally and externally. The common media of communication that the organization uses for verbal communication include face to face communication, social media platforms such as Facebook. With regards to non verbal strategies, the organization utilizes memos and newspapers for internal and external communication, respectively. Leonardi, Huysman and Steinfield (2013) indicate that leaders of not for profit organizations use of social media platforms has tremendously transformed how organizations communicate with their staff as well as what communication approaches are effective to reach workers.Public Relations and Branding Strategies at Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, GeorgiaRonald McDonald Houses use social storytelling to boost donations for the chapter in Macon, Georgia and other locations. In 2010, the Ronald McDonald Houses Charities launched a campaign dabbed “Day of Change” to drive to donate a portion of their balance whenever shopping at McDonald restaurants. By using social media platforms to spread the campaign, Ronald McDonald Houses Charities managed to generate more than 180,000 interactions on its Facebook page as well as chapter pages. This increased the organizations online donations by 130 percent between August 2010 and August 2009 (Hibbard, 2011). OpportunitiesThe organization should consider intercultural communication to increase donor collection. Dang (2016) indicates that leaders with intercultural teams must be cognizant of each employee’s workload and workflow as well as cultural differences because organizational diversity affects the way intercultural groups communicate. ConclusionEffective leadership and communication strategies are essential in minimizing donor attrition and increasing funding for non-profit organizations. The Ronald McDonald Houses in Macon, Georgia can attribute its success to its board of directors that focuses on identifying the skill needed for effective management, recruiting new members, and ensuring that the organization stays on course with its orientation and knowledge development. The organization can also attribute its success to its organizational communication strategies, including use of verbal and non verbal media of communication, and its storytelling campaign. ReferencesAlbu, O. B., & Wehmeier, S. (2014). Organizational transparency and sense-making: The caseof northern rock. Journal of Public Relations Research, 26(2), 117-133.Dang, L. (2016). Intercultural communication: Differences between Western and Asian
perspective [Thesis], Centria University of Applied SciencesHibbard, C. (2011). Social storytelling boosts donations for Ronald McDonald House Charities. Retrieved from https://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/social-storytelling-boosts- donations-for-ronald-mcdonald-house-charities/Holloway, B. (2013). Using the phone to reduce donor attrition and drive loyalty.International Journal of Nonprofit & Voluntary Sector Marketing, 18(1), 31-35.Leonardi, P. M.,Huysman, M., & Steinfield, C. (2013). Enterprise social media: Definition,history, and prospects for the study of social technologies in organizations. Journal ofComputer-Mediated Communication, 19(1), 1-19.Ronald McDonald House Charities. (2020a). Ronald McDonald House Charities: Governance
guide. Retrieved from https://www.rmhdurhamwake.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/RMHC_Governance_Guide_English.pdfRonald McDonald House Charities Central Georgia. (2020b). 2019 board of directors. Retrieved from https://rmhccga.org/board.phpWenjun, Z. & Monit, C. (2014). Multiple relationship-management roles among communicatorsin not-for-profit organizations. Human Service Organizations: Management, Leadership& Governance, 38(5), 423-434