Fiscal Year 2020: The Year of Making the NCCL Budget Sexy

Denise UtterBlog, NCCL Board of Directors4 Comments

By John Gaffney, NCCL Treasurer

Fiscal Year 2020: The Year of Making the NCCL Budget Sexy

Do I have your attention?  Perhaps a better title is “Fiscal Year 2020: Moving from Speed-Dating to a Meaningful Relationship.”  Think about a time when you were dating and trying to find Mr. or Mrs. Right.  As you moved closer to a commitment, you needed to acknowledge who you are and what you really want from the relationship.  The same is true regarding NCCL and its relationship with members and partners, as well as your relationship with NCCL: what are your needs in your parish or diocesan ministry and how can you best communicate those needs to NCCL Leadership to support our shared mission? 

The NCCL budget is a living document that aligns our values, mission and strategic plan to the programming and products that make a difference in your ministry.  In 2019, we have formed the NCCL Finance Committee whose membership includes those who have financial acumen but also ministerial competence on the parish, diocesan and non-profit level.  We have focused conversations to help raise the financial I.Q. of the NCCL Board of Directors and Executive Director.  We also propose two changes to the budget process going forward:

  • Lengthen the planning process, and
  • Broadening the input from members (individual, diocesan and corporate) and partners throughout the year to provide honest feedback of what you desire of NCCL.

The keys to a successful budgeting process going forward include:

   NCCL will clearly identify programmatic and product objectives, aligning strategic planning to this.  

  Determine the financial resources needed and available to achieve the program and product goals.

   Involve staff, board members and membership into the process to improve accuracy of information, commitment and engagement.

   Communicate clearly, and throughout the year, the financial story of NCCL.  

By living into the above four keys, we value our relationship with you as a member of NCCL.

We affirm you have found the right ministry partner to journey with.  

That this relationship is worth keeping, growing and sharing.  

Change will not happen overnight, but going slow and steady will take all of us to new heights.

Talking to each other in diverse ways is essential.  It will help us to know what to accomplish and keep us focused on results.  

NCCL is our organization and I am your steward for a little while focused on the financial strength of our community.  A critical part of my role and that of the Finance Committee is to attend to the creation and monitoring of the budget.  A common complaint is that an organization’s financial health is held by too few people.  If we keep the four keys in mind, aim to be realistic and involve the Board, staff and members, we will see benefits to the financial health of NCCL.

Please contact me at for more information on the budget process, the NCCL Finance Committee or any issue you would like to discuss that is related to the financial story of NCCL.  It is an honor to serve you in this role.  

4 Comments on “Fiscal Year 2020: The Year of Making the NCCL Budget Sexy”

  1. The keys to a successful budgeting process as listed here look very encouraging. They are ‘to the point’ and can easily be adapted and implemented in smaller mission dioceses as well as larger metropolitan entities. I think you did a solid job of adding the four follow up points related to the relationship between members and NCCL. You aren’t just trying to get a good match going as much as marketing to us – bravo. I can imagine how difficult it is to get our attention when our time is so limited and our resources stretched. You are doing a good job. I can’t wait to see the improvements to the website as well. Thank you for your commitment to us and to the mission.

    1. Thank you Monique. The Finance Committee is focused on supporting the organization, especially through its leadership, by being practical and mission focused in our counsel. Part of this commitment is continuing to seek member wisdom and to communicate often. Please let me know if you have any questions at any time as we journey together as members of NCCL.

  2. It is too bad that your article on the budget is listed with the word “sexy”. I am offended that as a Catholic professional, a diocesean director and a sister we need to use this word to get my attention. As a professional l look for the higher standard. This is not my standerard.

  3. Celeste I apologize for insulting you as well as any other NCCL members. That was certainly not the intent. In fact, when I shared the original blog post and title with my wife, who is a Certified Public Accountant, her counsel to me was, “great information but few will read it…you need to punch up the title to get people’s attention. How about using the word sexy?” As a former English teacher I thought immediately of the definition of “stimulating attractiveness.” The intent of the article was to present the budget as an “attractive” and essential tool to engage NCCL members and leadership in a meaningful relationship. I hope you will take the time to read the blog article even if my word selection for the title was less than stellar. Thank you.

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