top of page

Four Horsemen of the Nonprofit Apocalypse

Updated: Oct 6, 2023

Four Horsemen of the Nonprofit board Apocalypse:

  1. Failure to understand and/or adopt nonprofit best practices

  2. Poor board diversity (e.g., members serving more than six years; unbalanced demographics; skill sets lacking)

  3. Board members talking “outside school,” creating factions, splintered focus

  4. Unhealthy engagement with staff activity (either too much or not enough)

Devastated landscape with four riders on horseback representing the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.
Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse for Nonprofits

A healthy nonprofit board with authentic passion:

  • Actively engages in continued education to better understand its role

  • Works to achieve consensus on decisions – then actively supports those decisions

  • Sets the strategy for the organization, including benchmarks and goals

  • Avoids the cult of personality – serves with humility

  • Advocates for and supports the executive director

  • Actively and regularly represents the organization in the community

  • Focuses on the PURPOSE of organization in the context of how it serves the world, as opposed to ensuring its own organizational comfort and prosperity


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page