The Budget

by Cynthia M. Adams, CEO,

It is now time to develop an operating budget that reflects your operating plan. Staff and board members should participate in the budgeting process.

The first step in a budgeting process it to take a hard look at the year just ending. You'll want to compare the projected budget for each line item with the actual expenditures, and then forecast upcoming costs based on the expected growth (or decline) in activities for each line item.

There are numerous local, regional, and national organizations that offer online tutorials on how to develop both the operating plan and the operating budget. Take advantage of these tools to help guide your work.

Almost all grant requests will require a budget, either your organization's annual operating budget or a budget for the special project for which you're trying to secure support. Often the grantmaker will want to see both, so be sure to prepare these budgets separately but using similar formats.

How you present the budget can be very important to the overall success of your request.

You should present your budget in three different...

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