EIA Trainer Guidelines, qualifications, & Code of Ethics



1. Nonprofit/Philanthropy Experience

  1. Three years’ board experience if teaching Financial Management, Governance, Leadership & Organizational Culture, Legal, Public/Private Foundation Standards, and/or Strategic Directions & Alliances.
  2. Working knowledge of the difference between for-profit and nonprofit financial management terms.
  3. Real-world experience in using the concepts taught and the ability to use that experience to make connections and examples that anchor learning objectives with participants.
  4. Include in all training material and instruction statements that the information provided is for educational purposes only and to direct participants to seek the legal or financial advice needed for each organization’s circumstances.
  5. Five years of experience in the nonprofit sector—nonprofit or philanthropy (board, staff, volunteer, consultant/trainer-see specifics below or other).

2. Instructor Experience

  1. Three years of experience training in the nonprofit sector
  2. Experience in different types of training modalities
    • In-person
    • Virtual
    • Large/small groups
    • Team teaching
  3. Experience using various types of technology used in training
    • Projector
    • PowerPoint
    • GoToTraining/Zoom/Microsoft Team
  4. Observable application of general & adult education principles

3. EIA Train the Trainer (T3) Attendance Requirements

  1. Attend introductory meeting
  2. Attend complete EIA course
  3. Attend post-EIA course meeting
  4. Co-teach EIA with an existing EIA certified trainer

4. EIA Peer Review and Site Visit Requirements

  1. Observe an EIA Peer Review Site Visit
  2. Conduct an EIA Peer Review Site Visit with Observation

5. General Educational Outcomes for all sessions

  1. Motivate and inspire participation without bias towards specific issues, ideologies, or outcomes.
  2. Create an interactive, experiential opportunity—tailored to the needs of adult learners—for
    lasting and meaningful impact.
  3. Respect and draw upon the audience’s wisdom and help advance connections within the group so that opportunities for learning and collaboration can continue beyond the training.
  4. Involve and strengthen connections with local resources that can continue building the
    community’s capacity for effective service and collaboration.
  5. Educate, where appropriate, about the legal parameters of a topic.
  6. Continually refer to the Mississippi Principles and Standards of Nonprofit and Philanthropy Excellence (c).

6. Professionalism

  1. Empathetic
  2. Hard-working
  3. Reflective
  4. Actively listens to participants’ questions and respond appropriately
  5. Defers to another trainer (if available) for subject matter expertise


1. Credentials

  1. Area(s) of expertise (i.e. education, training, experience).
  2. Length of time in the field or area of expertise.
  3. Experience working with nonprofits.
  4. Experience working on various nonprofit-related projects.
  5. References from previous consulting assignments.
  6. Samples of work as requested.
  7. Required registration with MS Secretary of State’s office for professional fundraisers and lobbyists (if applicable).

2. Expectations of Trainers

  1. Join the Alliance as a member at the current annual fee or, provide 3 pro bono hours for an initial engagement (for example, deliver a training class or internal consulting).
  2. Align all content with, and fully support, the Principles & Standards.
  3. Maintain the highest ethical standards as outlined in the Consultant Code of Ethics (below). This includes respecting the client relationship between the Alliance and the nonprofit.
  4. A focus MUST be on client satisfaction with the services provided throughout the process.
  5. Agree to periodic observation and/or evaluation with follow-up discussion and feedback.
  6. Agree to and fulfill expectations regarding fee structure.
  7. It is inappropriate for trainers to attempt to sell services directly to Alliance members at any Alliance event, including when teaching an Alliance-sponsored workshop. Should a potential opportunity arise, the trainer is obligated to direct the potential client to work through Alliance staff for contractual discussions.

Code of Ethics

Source: IMC (Institute of Management Consultants) USA Code of Ethics © 2005 Used with permission (Adapted)

  • 1.0 I will serve my clients with integrity, competence, independence, objectivity, and professionalism.
  • 2.0 I will mutually establish with my clients realistic expectations of the benefits and results of my services.
  • 3.0 I will only accept assignments for which I possess the requisite experience and competence to perform and will only assign staff or engage colleagues with the knowledge and expertise needed to serve my clients effectively.
  • 4.0 Before accepting any engagement, I will ensure that I have worked with my clients to establish a mutual understanding of the objectives, scope, work plan, and fee arrangements.
  • 5.0 I will treat appropriately all confidential client information that is not public knowledge, take reasonable steps to prevent it from access by unauthorized people, and will not take advantage of proprietary or privileged information, either for use by myself, the client's firm, or another client, without the client's permission.
  • 6.0 I will avoid conflicts of interest or the appearance of such and will immediately disclose to the client circumstances or interests that I believe may influence my judgment or objectivity.
  • 7.0 I will offer to withdraw from a consulting assignment when I believe my objectivity or integrity may be impaired.
  • 8.0 I will refrain from inviting an employee of an active or inactive client to consider alternative employment without prior discussion with the client.
  • 9.0 I will agree in advance with a client on the basis for fees and expenses and will charge fees that are reasonable and commensurate with the services delivered and the responsibility accepted.
  • 10.0 I will not accept commissions, remuneration, or other benefits from a third party in connection with the recommendations to a client without that client's prior knowledge and consent, and I will disclose in advance any financial interests in goods or services that form part of such recommendations.