Supporting & Coaching the Nonprofit Leader

Supporting & Coaching the Nonprofit Leader

 Photo: LEAD coach Jennifer Britton, Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (l)  and Pearl Sanchez, LEAD alum from Turning Point of Central California (r)

By Susie Polnaszek Community Foundation for Monterey County Program Officer, Center for Nonprofit Excellence.

What does it take to thrive as a nonprofit leader today when there’s no shortage of challenge, stress, and uncertainty?

Connecting with other executives can make a difference.

As one local leader in our peer group for executives said, “as an ED it can be very isolating. Our ED Learning Community gives us a forum to have our concerns heard and to get suggestions and support from our peers.”

Humor & Health Can Help Prevent Burnout

Humor can be a stress-reducer as well. Blogger Vu Lee gives us a chance to laugh at some of the idiosyncrasies and challenges we face in the sector. Beth Kanter and others have written about healthy approaches to prevent nonprofit burnout.

Leadership Coaching

Another resource that is underutilized in our Monterey Bay region is leadership coaching. The Evelyn & Walter Haas Jr. Fund has a series of great, short video segments explaining coaching.

A coach can help you get from point A to point B to achieve your personal or professional vision. Through powerful questions, the coach holds a space for exploration, reflection, and action.” – Susie Polnaszek, CFMC Program Officer

Why a Coach?

  • Some clients see growth in their confidence or clarity, for example when managing challenging situations they have never faced before.
  • Established leaders may discover a renewed or re-aligned of purpose through coaching.

Leadership coaching is different from coaching that aims to correct an employee’s performance problems. It differs still from supervisors who take a coaching approach to encourage success from their employees. To learn more about Supervisor as Coach, see our upcoming workshop “Supervisor as Coach with Rita Sever”.


LEADer Lisa Corpuz, Interim, Inc.

CFMC has worked closely with leadership coaches through our LEAD Institute and have seen positive results. LEAD coaches have generously given their time pro bono to work with these emerging leaders. However, many professional coaches do charge a fee for this valuable service.


Resources & Grants

Apply Now

Whether its connecting, healthy practices, or coaching, you can enhance your leadership for greater vitality and impact. Not sure if leadership coaching or a peer group is right for you? Contact CNE staff  or call (831) 375-9712 for a brief consultation today.

Susie Polnaszek is a Program Officer for the Community Foundation for Monterey County, where she manages the coaching component of LEAD Institute for the Center for Nonprofit Excellence. She enjoys helping people access information and resources that can make a difference in their work.