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Nonprofit University

PRO 245 | Effective Program Operations

Program leadership at a senior level demands the design and maintenance of processes (the movement of information and resources) and systems (the physical and digital tools for storage and communication of those information and resources) to maximize the effectiveness of the people on your team. With well-designed operations, everyone on your team is clear on everything from the daily workings of their particular program to the overall strategies and goals of the organization. People know how their roles feed into meeting program objectives, the goals and objectives for the department/unit, and the strategies and mission of the organization.
Processes and systems must be collaborative in their design, development, and usage: In the same way that your programs do not impose their will upon your clients but rather build relationships with them, team-member buy-in will make or break any policies, procedures, processes, or systems you implement. You should be aspirational while also honoring the real capacity of your human, physical, and financial resources. You need to take into account the de facto systems that have developed either in a vacuum of official norms or in efforts to make shortcuts around inefficient or dictated standards (think about the myriad isolated and unofficial—and possibly insecure—Google, Dropbox, Slack, Basecamp, and other accounts that your teams and team members use to store and share information, while “official” systems like your SharePoint or proprietary database gather virtual dust).


  • Designing, maintaining, and evaluating/refining processes
  • Formalizing program policies and procedures
  • Best practices in using tools for workplace collaboration
  • Using, or losing, the tools and resources already at your disposal


At the end of this course, you will be able to…
  • Assess your existing official and unofficial processes and systems, considering factors like strengths, challenges, shared understanding of purpose and steps, and potential compliance red flags.
  • Develop or refine clear processes for program operations.
  • Identify practical tools to support your processes.


Offered as part of the Certificate of Nonprofit Program Management Essentials, this course is ideal for senior program managers, program directors, and VPs with oversight for a portfolio of programs or a large/complex program with multiple, diverse funding sources, and supervisory responsibility for a larger team.


  • May 16, 2019
  • December 12, 2019


9:00 am - 3:00 pm


Georgia Center for Nonprofits
100 Peachtree Street NW
Suite 1500
Atlanta, GA 30303
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Registration Details

GCN Member: $150
Nonmember: $175

Questions? Contact us at [email protected] or 678-916-3081.