The GuideStar Blog retired September 9, 2019. We invite you to visit its replacement, the Candid Blog. You’re also welcome to browse or search the GuideStar Blog archives. Onward!

GuideStar Blog

Transparency – One Way To Do It

impactcallOne of the key tenets of GuideStar’s mission is to advance transparency. Through our quarterly Impact Calls, we seek to lead by example, providing a forum through which to report on programmatic and operational metrics in a timely, interactive, and inclusive manner, and engage our stakeholders in a broader discussion of our strategy and priorities.

Similar to quarterly earnings calls in the for-profit sector, GuideStar’s Impact Calls are structured in three sections: highlights by our CEO on our programmatic and operational milestones focusing on our impact; followed by a review of GuideStar’s financial results by our CFO. Lastly, we open up the call for Q&A with our audience. Providing this two-way conversation helps us to know what we are doing right and where we can improve.

In addition, during each call, we recap “lessons learned” from the quarter, be they missteps, pivots, or pauses for reflection. We carry these lessons into the execution of our programs and in further reporting to funders – increasing our transparency and accountability to those invested in our work and the sector.

Participants on the calls, including nonprofits, funders, media, researchers, and other partners, welcome how transparent and open we have been. Yet, we can imagine being no other way. By sharing lessons learned and how we have been able to make changes based on data-driven decisions, we hope to jump start a sector-wide discussion and commitment to greater transparency and accountability. If this happens, then we will have been successful.

So – what challenges are you facing at your nonprofit? How do you talk about difficult moments at your nonprofit without overwhelming your successes?

To hear about some of GuideStar’s “lessons learned” in the past quarter, tune in to our next Impact Call on August 10 at 2 pm ET by registering here.


Elizabeth Suarez Beth Suarez is GuideStar’s director of development. Beth came to GuideStar with 25 years of experience in nonprofit fundraising and development, including positions with PBS, National Trust for Historic Preservation and Catholic Charities USA. She is active in the local nonprofit community and serves on various boards. You can reach Beth at To learn more about GuideStar's Foundation Membership Program, click here.
Topics: Impact