How to manage social enterprise finances for efficiency and sustainability  

(Next course date to be announced shortly)

5-day course of 40 hours over 5 weeks - Tuesdays and Thursday 08-10 AM CET

Starting at CHF 640 - 20% off to help strengthening civil society


This course is designed to help launching and developing social entrepreneurship, especially those in rural developing countries.

In this course, you will develop your ability to read and analyze financial documents in the context of social entrepreneurships and micro and small business opportunities. The aim is to enable you to identify pathways towards efficient outcomes and achieving sustainability of your social enterprise. Critical thinking approaches will be explored to help you making financial decisions which favourably affect your entreprise. 

Financial resourcefulness and self-reliance among NGOs and Community-Based Organisations (CBOs) are part of today’s development initiatives and include start-up financing for social enterprises. Complementary to social entrpreneurship, some development initiatives include funds for micro-finance projects designed for successful NGOs and entrepreneurial CBOs, encompassing family, micro and small businesses. Financial management concepts for such initiatives are part of the course programme.  


Development providers also need expertise in financial management of social entrepreneurship and CBOs, as well as for micro and small business endeavours, if they support such initiatives. While this goes beyond traditional ways of development assistance for basic community welfare, the growth of social enterprises and interlinked micro and small business initiativesit brings along a big potential for sustainability and .   



The course will benefit persons who are working in the context of social entrepreneurship development, CBOs and interlinked micro and small business initiatives:

  • Project/programme managers

  • Project/programme coordinators

  • Project team members

  • Donors supporting social enterprise, micro and small business development

  • Finance officers

  • Loan officiers

  • Staff supervising needs assessments

  • Consultants 

At the end of the course, participants are able to:​

  • Explain the meaning and scope of financial management in not-for-profit and for-profit enterprises

  • Discuss the difference and relationship between financial accounting and managerial accounting

  • Illustrate how financial decisions are reflected in the formal financial statements 

  • Explain the importance of effective working capital management

  • Illustrate the relationship of vertical and horizontal analysis

  • Discuss the different financial measurements (ratios) in business analysis

  • Demonstrate the cause-effect of financial statement as a tool for diagnosis

  • Illustrate the break-even point as a tool for profitability measurement

  • Discuss the non-ratio measurements as a tool for working capital analysis

  • Introduce investment valuation as a tool for capital investment analysis



Introductory Module: Nature and Scope of Financial Management for Social Enterprises

  • Differences between Financial Management for not-for-profit and for-profit Enterprises

  • Financial Management Objectives and Functions

Module 1: Financial Standards

  • Financial Documentation – Single Entry versus Double Entry

  • Books of Accounts

  • Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)

Module 2: Numbers tell Stories

  • Financial Accounting versus Managerial Accounting

  • Tools for Making Decisions in Social Enterprises

  • Relating the Financial Statements

Module 3: Working Capital Management

  • Working Capital Cycle

  • Components of Working Capital

  • Approaches to Improve Working Capital

  • Non-Ratio financial measurements as tools for Working Capital Analysis

Module 4: Financial Analysis as a Tool for Decision-Making

  • Vertical and Horizontal Analysis

  • Financial Ratios as a Tool for Financial Analysis

  • Financial Causes and Effect

  • Break-Even Analysis

Module 5: Investment Criteria to develop a Social Enterprise

  • Access to Finance for Social Enterprises

  • Choosing Capital Investment

  • Time Value of Money


At the end of the course, each participant can avail of a credit of 45min for personalised coaching to support the implementation of action plans and for any questions related to it. The coaching is provided by the trainer of this course. It is valid for a period of two months after the course. 


This course is the equivalent of a five-day in-person course. It takes approximately 40 hours, thereof 20 hours of live online classes, using participatory techniques such as brainstorming, group work, case studies, video discussions, exercises, etc., and 20 hours of of live working groups on case studies and exercises with other students, reading and individual work. The trainer maintains the same level of interaction as in an in-person course.

Trainer: Rita Palo 


Course dates (all times are GMT+1): Tuesdays and Thursdays 08:00 - 10:00 CET

The fee includes the personalised post-course coaching. There are two types of certificates available for this course (fees in Swiss Francs, CHF):

Certificate of AttendanceAfter completing the course programme

Early bird fee, until 1 May: CHF 540 instead of 680; afterwards CHF 640 instead of 800. 

Certificate of Achievement: After passing successfully the exam at the end of the course programme

Early bird fee, until 1 May: CHF 590 instead of 730; afterwards CHF 680 instead of 850.

Max. 16 participants - apply early to secure your participation

20% off