VolunteerMatch had developed two revenue-generating business units, and the management team believed there were other possibilities worth pursuing. At the same time, neither of the existing operations was generating a positive contribution, and many on the staff were fearful that some of the new options might make VolunteerMatch too commercial and profit-driven.
Were there ways to improve the performance of existing ventures? Which of the potential new activities, if any, could contribute to the organization's margin without compromising its mission? These were some of the questions VolunteerMatch was asking when its founder and CEO, Jay Backstrand, invited a team from The Bridgespan Group to help them explore the challenges of earned-income ventures.