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The Not-for-Profit CEO: How to Attain and Retain the Corner Office

The Not-for-Profit CEO: How to Attain and Retain the Corner Office

Walter P. Pidgeon Jr.

ISBN: 978-0-471-69844-9 November 2004 309 Pages




Make your move toward the top

Based on research conducted with the support of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) involving more than 100 not-for-profit CEOs, as well as the author’s professional background, The Not-for-Profit CEO serves as both an authoritative reference guide and a practical workbook. In addition to sample tables, forms, and checklists, it offers case studies of leading not-for-profit CEOs, complete with illuminating interviews that enable readers to understand and implement the proven steps destined to get them to the top seat of any not-for-profit organization.

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Chief Executive Officers Who Participated in the Study.




Chapter 1: The Evolution of the Not-for-Profit CEO Position.


The Process Began Much Earlier Than You Think.

The Rise of Volunteer-Driven Organizations.

Transition from a Frontier Nation to an Industrial Nation.

Postwar Expansion.

Defining the Not-for-Prof it.

The Volunteer’s Role.

Introduction of the Professional Leader.


Chapter 2: How Not-for-Profit CEOs Attain Their Positions.


Historical Overview of Attaining CEO Positions.

Test Yourself.

Just Who Is CEO Material, Anyway?

How Should I Prepare to Become a CEO?

The Road Less Traveled.

Take the Comprehensive Approach.

The Reality Check.


Chapter 3: How Not-for-Profit CEOs Retain Their Positions.


Demonstrate Personal Skills.

The First Six Months Is Critical.

The Initial Review Findings.

Work with Volunteers and the Board.

The Leader’s Relationship with the Organization’s Staff.

Lessons of the Past.

Anticipated Challenges for the Future.

Personal Enrichment Needs.


Chapter 4: Case Studies of Successful Not-for-Profit Ceos.


The Research Methodology and Presentation.

Synopsis of the Participating Not-for-Profit CEOs.


Chapter 5: Suggested Methods of Attaining a CEO Position.


Know Yourself.

The Use of a Self-Assessment Tool.

Take a Realistic Look at the Prize.

Education: What’s In and What’s Not.

Know the Turf.

Get Past the Brick Wall.

Find a Mentor.

Listen to the Experts.

Put Together the Package You Need.

How to Find The Position.


Chapter 6: The CEO’s Survival Kit.


Maintaining Your Personal Edge.

Optimizing the First Six Months.

The Review Document.

Achieving a Full Partnership with Your Board.

Creating a Staff Team.

Keeping Watch.

Making a Difference.


Chapter 7: Positioning Yourself to Attain a Higher-Level CEO Position.


Time for the Next Step.

What the Participating CEOs Told Us.

Search Firm Relationships.

Preparing for the Next CEO Position.


Chapter 8: Summary of the National Study of Not-For-Profit CEOs.


Career Prof iles of the Participating Not-for-Prof it CEOs.

Participating CEOs’ Advice and Insight on the Survey Questions.


Epilogue: A Message to Volunteer Leaders.


Additional Sources of Information.