Case | HBS Case Collection | December 2006 (Revised February 2007)

Opportunity International: Measurement and Mission

by Herman B. Leonard, Marc J. Epstein and Melissa Tritter

Abstract

After a "first career" in business, HBS graduate Christopher Crane becomes CEO of a worldwide microfinance network. The organization's twin challenges are: 1) developing metrics to give it an accurate picture of its situation and impacts, and 2) generating rapid growth. Students learn how non-financial metrics are integral to Opportunity International's mission but are difficult to define and measure; tailored metrics are necessary for demonstrating success to donors and for strategic planning. Also, the organization is committed to helping as many people out of poverty as quickly as possible, but donations and repayments are not enough to fuel rapid growth; other financial tools are needed. Explores the challenges of measuring non-financial success and considers the trade-offs of continuing as a non-profit versus converting to a for-profit entity. Students will gain skills relevant to growing an organization that is mission-driven but financially constrained, and that has a complex array of international stakeholders.

Keywords: Microfinance; Measurement and Metrics; Problems and Challenges; Growth and Development Strategy; Business and Stakeholder Relations; Business Model; Nonprofit Organizations; Giving and Philanthropy; Financial Services Industry;

Citation:

Leonard, Herman B., Marc J. Epstein, and Melissa Tritter. "Opportunity International: Measurement and Mission." Harvard Business School Case 307-067, December 2006. (Revised February 2007.)