3 / 22 / 2013
Innovation: The Fuel That Drives Our World Forward
Justin Korda and Seth Cohen emerge from South By Southwest (SXSW), the annual music, film and interactive showcase th...
Justin Korda and Seth Cohen emerge from South By Southwest (SXSW), the annual music, film and interactive showcase that draws tens of thousands of the best and brightest minds in the industry, energized with great ideas about fostering innovation to ejewish philanthropyensure a vibrant Jewish future. Indeed, the SXSW experience validated for them the need to provide young Jewish innovators with more opportunities to learn from those leading change initiatives in a variety of sectors outside of the Jewish community. Bringing in external ideas and resources will allow us to leverage the best of what we create within our community, combined with what we learn from others to create meaningful connection and impact inside and outside of the Jewish world.
Read more, including Lee Sherman's comment noting AJFCA member agencies' collaborations within their own communities.
3 / 22 / 2013
Strategies to Increase Nonprofit Donor Retention Rates
While all nonprofits recognize the value of cultivating donors over the long-term, they feel an incredible amount of ...
While all nonprofits recognize the value of cultivating donors over the long-term, they feel an incredible amount of pressure to implement short-term strategies that will raise money today. Unfortunately, many nonprofits don't feel like they have the luxury of focusing on fundraising strategies that will bring in long-term results, which has led to low donor retention rates. According to the Fundraising Effectiveness Project, the commercial business customer retention rate is 94%. Guess what the nonprofit donor retention rate is? 49%. That is an attrition rate of 59%. Continue reading here.
3 / 22 / 2013
Top Things to Consider Before Converting Your Nonprofit's Data into a New System
Recently, Laura Bibbo wrote a helpful post on 7 Things to Think About Before You Implement a Fundraising System. Now,...
Recently, Laura Bibbo wrote a helpful post on 7 Things to Think About Before You Implement a Fundraising System. Now, here are some things to consider before you move any data into a new system, and a few tips on how to get the conversion process started off right.
- Data Mapping
- Code Structure
- Historical Data
- Think it Through
3 / 22 / 2013
The Strength of the Nonprofit Lies in Delegating Responsibility
How to delegate responsibility is not a issue unique to nonprofit organizations, but it is of such importance because...
How to delegate responsibility is not a issue unique to nonprofit organizations, but it is of such importance because ofejp full logo its implications for the productive use of human resources. Often the greatest asset of the nonprofit is its professional staff and volunteer leadership. If they are not utilized to the optimum the agency is selling itself short and stunting the growth of both the organization and the staff. Continue reading here.
3 / 15 / 2013
Nonprofits Race to Get Ahead of the Explosion in Small Screens
When Mercy Housing set out to make its Web site easy to navigate on smartphones and tablets, its top priority was to ...
When Mercy Housing set out to make its Web site easy to navigate on smartphones and tablets, its top priority was to remake the donation page before the critical holiday fundraising season opened.
And with good reason, it turns out. People using mobile devices accounted for 18 percent of the organization's year-end online gifts-nearly one out of every five online contributions-compared with just 2 percent during the same time just a year earlier. Continue reading here.
3 / 15 / 2013
Gen Next on the Nonprofit Board
In these increasingly difficult times, the need for active and engaged board members is greater than ever. The genera...
In these increasingly difficult times, the need for active and engaged board members is greater than ever. The generation under 40 is a largely untapped resource, nationally comprising less than 15% of board members. This is a generation committed to the value of service. They have the expertise crucial for nonprofits seeking tventureneero create sustainable business models. They also have experience with fundraising. Continue reading here.
3 / 15 / 2013
Building a Better Philanthropist
In the last couple of decades, a tectonic shift has altered the landscape of Jewish philanthropy. The phenomenon is n...
In the last couple of decades, a tectonic shift has altered the landscape of Jewish philanthropy. The phenomenon is not only Jewish - tejp full logohe number of foundations in the United States has grown fivefold in the last 20 years; the same growth in donor-advised funds has taken just a decade. Continue reading here.
3 / 15 / 2013
The Strategic Plan is Dead. Long Live Strategy.
In today's fast-changing world, why freeze your strategic thinking in a five-year plan? Take a moment and read ...
In today's fast-changing world, why freeze your strategic thinking in a five-year plan?
Take a moment and read these two words: strategic plan. Now close your eyes and picture one. If what comes up is a thick binder, gathering dust on a shelf next to other thick binders from five and ten years past, you're not alone. A better understanding of the history of strategy and what caused the demise of binder-bound strategic planning can point the way to re-inventing strategy for the world we live in today. It is important to remember that strategy's roots are military. Military strategy focuses on setting objectives, collecting intelligence, and then using that intelligence to make informed decisions about how to achieve your objectives-take that hill, cut this supply line. Continue reading here.
3 / 15 / 2013
DoGooder Awards Recognize Awesome Nonprofit Videos
See3 Communications and YouTube, along with the Nonprofit Technology Network, announced today the launch of the 2013 ...
See3 Communications and YouTube, along with the Nonprofit Technology Network, announced today the launch of the 2013 DoGooder Video Awards. The DoGooder Awards recognize the creative and effective use of video in promoting social good. Cisco is generously contributing $3500 to four contest winners. In addition to prizes provided by Cisco, contest winners will be featured on the YouTube homepage and receive free registration to the Nonprofit Technology Conference, the signature event hosted by the Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN). Finally, the winners will see their videos (and their message) featured on the YouTube Spotlight Channel on April 12th. Continue reading here.
DoGooder Awards Recognize Awesome Nonprofit Videos, March 7, 2013, Beth's Blog, by Beth Kanter
3 / 15 / 2013
Responding to Requests for Networking
Many of us receive requests to meet with people who are thinkingejewish philanthropy about entering Jewish communal w...
Many of us receive requests to meet with people who are thinkingejewish philanthropy about entering Jewish communal work or working in the nonprofit sector. Often these requests are relayed to us by a colleague who asks, in an email or phone call, that we meet with someone they know or with whom they have had a similar conversation. What should our response be when we are approached by those seeking a job or considering the field of Jewish communal service? Continue reading here.
Responding to Requests for Networking, March 6, 2013, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
3 / 15 / 2013
Key Findings: 2012 Jewish Communslideal Compensation Survey
In the spring of 2012, a group of NYU alumni, all young professionals working in the Jewish communal sector - launche...
In the spring of 2012, a group of NYU alumni, all young professionals working in the Jewish communal sector - launched a compensation survey of the field. Last week, at a panel discussion hosted by Advancing Jewish Professionals, the key findings were released. While this survey was crowd-sourced, and may not be representative, it still provides an important snapshot of the field.
An in-depth look at the survey results will be coming shortly.
3 / 15 / 2013
Do Alternative Breaks Have a Real Impact?
Each year, thousands of students like Jodi Suckle will volunteer in communities around the world by participating in ...
Each year, thousands of students like Jodi Suckle will volunteer in communities around the world by participating in Alternative Winter and Spring Breaks. These students interact with local neighborhoods, learn about social issues, and build relationships with other participants. But will their work really have an impact?
Repair the World's new study: "Breaking for Change: How Jewish Service-learning Influences the Alternative Break Experience" investigates just that. Continue reading here.
3 / 1 / 2013
Innovators in Inclusion of People with Disabilities
The Ruderman Family Foundation is now accepting applications for the 2013 Ruderman Prize in Disability, which will pr...
The Ruderman Family Foundation is now accepting applications for the 2013 Ruderman Prize in Disability, which will provide $250,000 in funding for innovative programs and services that foster the full inclusion of people with disabilities in the Jewish community.
This exciting initiative will provide $50,000 to five organizations that work in the disability arena, serve those in the Jewish community, and actively champion inclusion in their work. All Jewish organizations from around the world that have an innovative model for inclusion are strongly encouraged to apply.
The application form for the awards is available on the Foundation's website. Submissions are due on March 18th and winners will be announced in May. In June of 2012, the Foundation awarded $200,000 in total to ten organizations in the U.S., Israel, Europe, and Mexico. The Foundation had received over 150 applications.
Please follow the Foundation's blog, Zeh Lezeh, to be kept apprised of news relating to the Ruderman Prize.
3 / 1 / 2013
Testing Is Cheaper Than Getting It Wrong!
Testing is cheaper than getting it wrong! Be sure to always be testing to get the absolute best response from your on...
Testing is cheaper than getting it wrong! Be sure to always be testing to get the absolute best response from your online community.
Year in, year out, nonprofits are using every available online NTENtactic and tool to make real change. In fact, nonprofits are often on the cutting edge of web technology, using new tools and tactics always looking for new ways to build support for their movements and to cultivate and convert those supporters into donors. But not every new tactic works, and it's critical that nonprofits have short feedback loops to figure out what's working and where to allocate resources. Continue reading here.
3 / 1 / 2013
Understanding the Different Cultures of Different Generations
Conflict between generations is as old as parents and teenagers. All of us remember fussing at our parents with the c...
Conflict between generations is as old as parents and teenagers. All of us remember fussing at our parents with the common angst filled complaint "You just don't underSTAND!" Today, more than ever before, a lack of intergenerational understanding has spilled into the workplace throughout society, in for-profits, nonprofits, government and the military. It shows up in a variety of ways, and at some very important, and sometimes unexpected moments. Continue reading here.
3 / 1 / 2013
Said It Once? Now Say It 1,000 Times
By taking your multi-channel messaging through the following simple, three-phase approach, you will effectively repur...
By taking your multi-channel messaging through the following simple, three-phase approach, you will effectively repurpose your content to reach its audience without adding more hours to your day.
Supporters communicate with your nonprofit through multiple channels but engage differently with content depending on its delivery method. You must not only create a compelling message, but also optimize it so that it is received effectively across multiple channels frequently enough to resonate with your audience. Continue reading here.
3 / 1 / 2013
Surprisingly Uncomplicated Path for Developing Leaders
Kirk Kramer of The Bridgespan Group suggests some new approaches to leadership development in his recent papers. Read...
3 / 1 / 2013
Searching for Gender Equality
To combat violence against women, mobilize feminist groups. A new analysis by political scientists Mala Htun of the...
To combat violence against women, mobilize feminist groups.
A new analysis by political scientists Mala Htun of the University of New Mexico and S. Laurel Weldon of Purdue University shows just how great an impact civil society has in this area. In a comprehensive study of policies in 70 countries, they found that mobilization by autonomous feminist movements has the most enduring impact on policies to eliminate violence against women. Continue reading here.
3 / 1 / 2013
Nonprofit Film School Primer: Or, The Idealware School of Video for Nonprofits That Don't Video Good (Part 1)
As a species, we watch a lot of videos on our computers. Heck, being able to share short videos-a disproportionate nu...
As a species, we watch a lot of videos on our computers. Heck, being able to share short videos-a disproportionate number involving cats-helped make the internet so popular. You may even have been watching one just a few minutes ago. The rise of YouTube and other video sharing sites has made it possible for anyone to upload and share their own videos, and many nonprofits have jumped on board the video bandwagon without paying much thought to cost, equipment, or the experience needed to make videos worth watching. Continue reading here.
3 / 1 / 2013
Your Quick Guide to Better Nonprofit Financial Management
If you feel the need to strengthen your financial management savvy, check out StrongNonprofits.org, a new website fea...
If you feel the need to strengthen your financial management savvy, check out StrongNonprofits.org, a new website featuring free tools, how-tos and guides.
Developed in partnership between The Wallace Foundation and Fiscal Management Associates, the site contains more than 64 resources for anyone involved in nonprofit financial planning, monitoring, operations or oversight, and particularly nonprofit afterschool program providers. Features range from a nonprofit accounting guide, to an article on sensible growth strategies, to a podcast on how to understand the true costs of programming. Continue reading here.
3 / 1 / 2013
Governance and Accountability: Who Is Responsible?
Who has the responsibility for governance and accountability in the nonprofit organization? What are the functions of...
Who has the responsibility for governance and accountability in the nonprofit organization? What are the functions of a board of directors, a board of governors, or a board of trustees? What is the difference between the bodies,given that the terms are often used interchangeably? What role does an advisory board or professional advisory committee have within the organization? What is the relationship between the board of directors and the advisory board? Continue reading here.
2 / 22 / 2013
Financing Not Fundraising: Find and Keep a Great Fundraiser
The news is not good lately about how effective the head fundraiser is at nonprofit organizations. A new study by Com...
The news is not good lately about how effective the head fundraiser is at nonprofit organizations. A new study by CompassPoint reveals some startling realities about the fundraiser role in the nonprofit sector:
- 25% of executive directors fired their last development director
- 33% of executive directors are lukewarm about their current development director
- More than 50% of executive directors say they can't find well-qualified fundraisers
- 50% of development directors plan to leave within the next two years
- And 40% plan to leave fundraising altogether
2 / 22 / 2013
Conflict of Interest . . . or Conflict of Loyalty?
"Conflict of loyalty" is a useful concept and term that gives us another dimension to work with than simply...
"Conflict of loyalty" is a useful concept and term that gives us another dimension to work with than simply conflict of interest:
In our legitimate desire to avoid conflicts of interest in nonprofits, we typically make two oddly opposite mistakes:
- We narrow "conflict of interest" to a strict legal definition and focus only on matters that involve personal financial gain, and
- At the same time we are too quick to label any kind of relationship at all as a conflict of interest.
2 / 22 / 2013
The Five-Minute Nonprofit MBA
Among all the differences between nonprofits and the corporate world, one contrast that is often overlooked but influ...
Among all the differences between nonprofits and the corporate world, one contrast that is often overlooked but influential is the path to executive leadership.
If you're a nonprofit executive, chances are that you embarked on that path because you were committed to your mission, not to the art of management. This is the reverse of the pattern in the corporate sector, where many aspire to leadership positions first and often move between industries in pursuit of those positions. Continue reading here.
The Five-Minute Nonprofit MBA, October 9, 2012, Stanford Social Innovation, by Curtis Chang
2 / 22 / 2013
The Trouble with "Passion for the Mission"
"Passion for the mission is a must" . . . so say many job announcements and board member requirement lists....
"Passion for the mission is a must" . . . so say many job announcements and board member requirement lists. Wait a minute. Let's examine this sacred cow cliche a little more.
First, is "passion for the mission" enough to make someone a good board member, good executive, good staff person? Of course not. Someone may have a deep passion for children's health, yet not be interested in a particular pediatric clinic or a toxics prevention organization. So we know that passion isn't enough. Continue reading here.
The Trouble with "Passion for the Mission" February 10, 2013, Blue Avocado, by Jan Masaoka
2 / 22 / 2013
Easy to Forget, Critical to Remember: Perspective is Everything
Have you ever noticed how very young kids' drawings usually don't feature a person's neck? Have you wonde...
Have you ever noticed how very young kids' drawings usually don't feature a person's neck? Have you wondered why?
Katya's theory is that if you're two or three years old and your perspective is low to the ground, you don't see people's necks when you look up. You see a head sitting on arms.
She can't think of a better analogy for marketing. Marketing mandates that we look at the world through the eyes of our audience and communicate from that perspective. The process of pushing into a foreign frame of reference can be hard, but when we do it, we find its value. Everything looks wildly different from that perspective. And our work must meld to its crazy contours. This is the mind-bending fun that is our profession.
Easy to Forget, Critical to Remember: Perspective is Everything, February 15, 2013, Katya's Nonprofit Marketing Blog, by Katya Andersen
2 / 15 / 2013
D.C. Forum Looks at Protecting the Most Vulnerable in Jewish Community
The JTA published an article on Monday, February 11th noting the importance and success of our Government Affairs Ins...
The JTA published an article on Monday, February 11th noting the importance and success of our Government Affairs Institute/Advocacy Mission held jointly with JFNA last week. During the three days, members from across the country enjoyed the opportunity to hear from experts on top issues of national importance, and then to share their priorities in meetings with their legislative representatives on Capitol Hill. GAI documents can be found here. We thank our members who participated and invite all of you to participate next year. To view photos of the GAI - go to the AJFCA Facebook page. While you are there - be sure to "like" our page for updates moving forward.
2 / 15 / 2013
Fostering a Self-Advocacy Movement for People with Intellectual Disabilities in Israel
The human rights approach to disabilities shapes the piercing social message of "nothing about us without us&quo...
The human rights approach to disabilities shapes the piercing social message of "nothing about us without us". This message can raise the awareness of people with diverse disabilities, including people with intellectual disabilities, to their right to be involved in making decisions concerning all aspects of their life. Unfortunately the actualization of this basic human right is severely lacking in most people's day-to-day reality. People with disabilities have been discriminated against for centuries and they have not had access to civic and political participation. This is particularly prevalent for people with intellectual disabilities. Continue reading here.
Fostering a Self-Advocacy Movement for People with Intellectual Disabilities in Israel, February 7, 2013, Zeh Lezeh (For One Another), by Jean Judes, Beit Issie Shapiro; & David B. Marcu
2 / 15 / 2013
The Importance of Endowments: Building a Stronger Organization with Smarter Asset Management
While every vibrant Jewish nonprofit today should pay attention to building a strong endowment, some organizations ha...
While every vibrant Jewish nonprofit today should pay attention to building a strong endowment, some organizations haejewish philanthropyve approached the process through two concurrent (and compatible) philosophies: seeking more philanthropic support as the primary objective and, at the same time, developing ways to reduce costs and enhance investment strategies. Both are important. Continue reading here.
2 / 15 / 2013
How To Easily Repurpose Your Content for Social Channels
Your organization uses an editorial calendar to plan out content for different channels, but there is still need the ...
Your organization uses an editorial calendar to plan out content for different channels, but there is still need the need to optimize it for different channels and do that efficiently. Optimizing your content for social channels does not have to be labor intensive. Many organizations create great content for their web sites or blogs and slightly tweak it for Facebook or Twitter - with a focus on making it visual. And, of course, there are benefits to visual content like increased engagement. Continue reading here.
2 / 8 / 2013
Honest Talk About Anxiety: Contest Winners Write About Sensitive But Important Subject
Moment Magazine and The Andrew Kukes Foundation For Social Anxiety, a 2013 AJFCA Annual Conference sponsor, announced...
Moment Magazine and The Andrew Kukes Foundation For Social Anxiety, a 2013 AJFCA Annual Conference sponsor, announced the winners of a contest designed to initiate public conversation about an important subject that is too often kept quiet. Readers were asked to write about anxiety as part of the magazine's Elephant In The Room Essay Content. The contest, designed to foster discussion about important but seldom-discussed topics, asked: How has anxiety affected you, your family or the Jewish people in general? Continue reading here.
Honest Talk About Anxiety, January 5, 2013, by Matt Friedman
2 / 8 / 2013
People receiving federal benefits through Social Security, Veterans Affairs, and the Railroad Retirement Board have u...
People receiving federal benefits through Social Security, Veterans Affairs, and the Railroad Retirement Board have until March 1st to arrange to get their payments electronically. The U.S. Department of Treasury's GoDirect campaign includes free resources you can disseminate to your clients. Continue reading here.
2 / 8 / 2013
Nonprofit Hiring Expected to Increase in 2013
Forty-four percent of nonprofit groups plan to hire more workers in the coming year, another sign charities are start...
Forty-four percent of nonprofit groups plan to hire more workers in the coming year, another sign charities are starting to feel confident about the economy, according to a new survey. The study of more than 580 organizations was conducted by Nonprofit HR Solutions, a human-resources consulting firm, and the Improve Group, a consultancy whose clients include charities. Continue reading here.
Nonprofit Hiring Expected to Increase in 2013, January 29, 2013, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Nicole Lewis
2 / 8 / 2013
Don't Call Us, We'll Call You
Okay. You're working at a great nonprofit, you've got a wonderffoundation centerul idea that's going to c...
Okay. You're working at a great nonprofit, you've got a wonderffoundation centerul idea that's going to change the world, and all you need is a grant to get you started. Guess what? The majority of America's foundations don't want you to send in a proposal. Of the more than 86,000 independent, community, and corporate foundations in the United States, 60% state that they do not accept unsolicited proposals. Together they represent 32% of total assets and 34% of annual giving. Nearly $16 billion of the $46 billion distributed every year is not up for grabs; you need an invitation. Continue reading here.
Don't Call Us, We'll Call You, January 31, 2013, Foundation Center, by Bradford K. Smith
2 / 8 / 2013
Can You Sum Up Your Charity's Work in One Simple Tag Line?
Amnesty International has a simple and concise tag line: exposing and preventing human-rights abuses. Some nonprofits...
Amnesty International has a simple and concise tag line: exposing and preventing human-rights abuses. Some nonprofits are able to articulate what they are and what they do quickly and clearly. But all too often, nonprofits-and even big businesses-make the mistake of failing to have an effective tag line. Continue reading here.
Can You Sum Up Your Charity's Work in One Simple Tag Line? January 17, 2013, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Matthew Scharpnick
2 / 8 / 2013
It's 2013, Do You Know Where Your Web ROI Is?
Now that data on the web is pervasive, we technology professionals are being asked to put a value on every little thi...
Now that data on the web is pervasive, we technology professionals are being asked to put a value on every little thing that we do for our web presence: email campaigns, Facebook posts, logo redesigns, information architecture tweaks. It all can be measured, and if you are reading this, chances are you are one of those people doing the measuring. Budgets rise and fall with the lines on a bar graph showing the click-through-rates of your end-of-year email campaign. Return on Investment (ROI) for web projects has come to the forefront. Continue reading here.
It's 2013, Do You Know Where Your Web ROI Is? January 16, 2013, NTEN, by Marissa Goldsmith & Lynn Labieniec
1 / 25 / 2013
How Small Nonprofits Can Improve Their Fiscal Health
Three-quarters of American nonprofits have annual budgets under $1 million, and most are even smaller. What these org...
Three-quarters of American nonprofits have annual budgets under $1 million, and most are even smaller. What these organizations lack in size, however, they make up for in impact. They respond to local needs, are absolutely critical to community building, and are staffed by people who understand and care about their communities-communities that have been abandoned by countless others.
Yet, it is known from work with small nonprofits (most recently through the Capital and Capacity for Economic Recovery Initiative) that they often struggle with financial challenges that are unique to their size and structure. Continue reading here.
How Small Nonprofits Can Improve Their Fiscal Health, January 3, 2013, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Anjali Deshmukh & Angela Francis
1 / 25 / 2013
Our Challenge: The Under-Demand for Jewish Life
To "win" in the Jewish community of tomorrow we must continuously imagine what people will need, or what wi...
To "win" in the Jewish community of tomorrow we must continuously imagine what people will need, or what will make a difference in their lives.
At the May 2007 national Jewish Federation Leadership Summit, Marc Blattner, President and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland presented a paper about lessons the Jewish community should take from Target (the department store). He discussed then the consumer nature of the Jewish community and outlined what he believes are the four greatest challenges facing Jewish communal life: cost, convenience, value and meaning. Today, Marc reads more and more from others about "Jewish consumerism." The problem is many still do not want to accept it. Continue reading here.
Our Challenge: The Under-Demand for Jewish Life, January 22, 2013, eJP, by Marc N. Blattner
1 / 25 / 2013
A Team Approach to Fundraising
Last week, CompassPoint and the Haas, Jr. Fund released "UnderDeveloped," a new report focused on the state...
Last week, CompassPoint and the Haas, Jr. Fund released "UnderDeveloped," a new report focused on the state of nboard sourceonprofit fundraising and - more specifically - the challenges that organizations face in recruiting and retaining strong development professionals and the underlying issues that often create those challenges. Continue reading here.
A Team Approach to Fundraising, January 15, 2013, BoardSource, by Anne Wallestad
1 / 25 / 2013
2013 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report
The 2013 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report is now available. In addition to the overall data, shared there are s...
The 2013 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report is now available. In addition to the overall data, shared there are some interesting insights when you look at the data by organization size, mission, and region of the U.S. Inforgraphics have also been published and are available for your use on Pinterest and Facebook.
1 / 25 / 2013
A Hierarchy of Program Evaluation Metrics
Idealware is diving into researching data-based decision making for a couple of projects, which includes metrics for ...
Idealware is diving into researching data-based decision making for a couple of projects, which includes metrics for program evaluation. Evaluation is a well trod field --a lot of people have said a lot of things about it... but a lot of it is contradictory or not that helpful. Laura Quinn, Director of Idealware especially dislikes the commonly used nomenclature of "outputs" and "outcomes." First, is it even possible to find two more confusingly similar words to represent two different concepts? Second, the terms aren't even used consistently and specifically-- there's a fair amount of overlap where one authority might call something (say, attendance at a workshop) a output when someone else would call that same thing an outcome. Continue reading here.
A Hierarchy of Program Evaluation Metrics, January 11, 2013, Idealware, by Laura Quinn
1 / 25 / 2013
The Difference Between Partnerships and Collaboration
Two years ago Rabbi Aaron Bisno, began speaking of the need for communal collaboration. He laid down this gauntlet fo...
Two years ago Rabbi Aaron Bisno, began speaking of the need for communal collaboration. He laid down this gauntlet for both his own congregation in Pittsburgh, Rodef Shalom, as well as for neighbors because he felt the challenges faced were so significant that no single entity could possibly solve them alone. Further, Rabbi Aaron believed - and felt more strongly than ever - that the Jewish community will not be well served if we continue to rely upon the modus operandi that "has served us so well for so long but have only taken us so far." Continue reading here.
The Difference Between Partnerships and Collaboration, January 17, 2013, eJP, by Rabbi Aaron Bisno
1 / 18 / 2013
Repair the World Names David Eisner President & CEO
Former Head of Corporation for National and Community Service and National Constitution Center to Lead Jewish Service...
Former Head of Corporation for National and Community Service and National Constitution Center to Lead Jewish Service Movement
Repair the World, the country's leading national nonprofit organization mobilizing Jewish volunteers, and AJFCA's partner in our civic engagement initiative, announced the appointment of David Eisner as its new president and CEO. Eisner, who was appointed by President George W. Bush to head the Corporation for National and Community Service and tapped by former President Bill Clinton to lead the National Constitution Center, joins as the organization embarks on a new strategic direction. Continue reading here.
Repair the World Names David Eisner President & CEO, January 16, 2013, by Repair the World
1 / 18 / 2013
5 Building Blocks of Nonprofit Success
There is a way off of the exhausting nonprofit hamster wheel of trying to do more and more with less and less. If you...
There is a way off of the exhausting nonprofit hamster wheel of trying to do more and more with less and less. If your nonprofit can:
- Articulate the value you provide
- Strengthen your organization
- Develop a groundbreaking boardsocial velocity
- Chart a strategic direction, and
- Attract more support
you will set yourself up to achieve the holy grail of the nonprofit sector: lasting change to a social problem. It's a process where your nonprofit assembles these 5 building blocks that each build on the next one. Continue reading here.
5 Building Blocks of Nonprofit Success, January 15, 2013, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
1 / 18 / 2013
Social Enterprise Insight Center Launches
On January 10th, Harvard Business Review (HBR) and Bridgespan launched the "HBR-Bridgespan Insight Center,"...
On January 10th, Harvard Business Review (HBR) and Bridgespan launched the "HBR-Bridgespan Insight Center," a three-month series of blogs on HBR.org from social entrepreneurs, impact investors, and thought leaders on how entrepreneurial organizations can help scale social impact. Continue reading here.
Social Enterprise Insight Center Launches, January 10, 2013, Harvard Business Review & The Bridgespan Group
1 / 18 / 2013
Networking Benefits Everyone
Sometimes we are not even aware of the value that our perspective on issues might have for someone else. At those tim...
Sometimes we are not even aware of the value that our perspective on issues might have for someone else. At those times we might tend to say no to a requested meeting because we think we just do not have the time. Yet often these meetings can be stimulating and invigorating. The questions and challenges that are posed can cause us to think about issues in a new or different way. Another person's search can often provide us with opportunities to rethink our own ideas and to question assumptions we have made in the past about ideas, concepts, and organizations. Continue reading here.
Networking Benefits Everyone, January 16, 2013, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
1 / 18 / 2013
I Need a COO: The Translation
Often nonprofit leaders see the COO as the Superman/woman who will bring order to operational chaos, institute some d...
Often nonprofit leaders see the COO as the Superman/woman who will bring order to operational chaos, institute some decent management practices, address the whole range of people issues, and generally make life easier for the executive director (ED). But that's not always the case. Getting things back on track often requires more than a COO. Continue reading here.
I Need a COO: The Translation, January 10, 2013, The Bridgespan Group, by Nicki Roth
1 / 18 / 2013
The Incredibly Simple, Science-Driven Way to Connect and Compel
Our brains are hard wired to relate to other people's experiences. When we witness or imagine someone acting, our...
Our brains are hard wired to relate to other people's experiences. When we witness or imagine someone acting, our own neurons fire in the same way they would if we were undertaking the same action. When we translate empathy into helping another person, we have another reaction in our brains: We're rewarded with happy feelings, thanks to a chemical dose to our brain's pleasure center. The next time you send a message out to the world, make sure:
- It tells a vivid story of someone doing good
- It shows the reaction of the person helped
- It inspires the rest of us to do the same
This is the incredibly simple, science-driven way to connect and compel. Continue reading here.
The Incredibly Simple, Science-Driven Way to Connect and Compel, January 15, 2013, Katya's Nonprofit Marketing Blog, by Katya Andersen
1 / 11 / 2013
Blackbaud Highlights Key Nonprofit Sector Trends to Watch in 2013
As charitable giving continues to recover, mobile, global and new expectations are changing nonprofit operations and ...
As charitable giving continues to recover, mobile, global and new expectations are changing nonprofit operations and supporter engagement worldwide Blackbaud, perhaps the largest software vendor to the global nonprofit community, has shared trends that will have the biggest impact on the nonprofit sector in 2013:
- Increase in charitable giving will not be dramaticblackbaud
- The nonprofit sector will go through a revaluing process
- Technology will play a major role for both nonprofits and their supporters
- The world is shrinking and philanthropic borders are broadening
1 / 11 / 2013
5 Things That Will Change the Way Nonprofits Work in 2013
Impact Investing More donors are exploring ways to combine their charity and financial investments. Some foundation...
More donors are exploring ways to combine their charity and financial investments. Some foundations are putting a share of their foundation's endowment into social enterprises, while the F.B. Heron Foundation announced last year that its entire endowment would go to such causes.
Meanwhile, more cities, states, and federal-government agencies are eyeing social-impact bonds, which are loans that cover a social program's upfront costs and pay donors or more traditional investors a profit if the program succeeds. While it remains unclear whether these new approaches will augment or cannibalize more traditional philanthropy, charities that can prove their programs work are poised to benefit the most. Continue reading here.
5 Things That Will Change the Way Nonprofits Work in 2013, January 4,2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Suzanne Perry, Caroline Preston & Cody Switzer
1 / 11 / 2013
The 4 Kinds of People Who Care About Causes - and What They Do Online
The Georgetown Center for Social Impact Communication has drawn on their recent research to profile who is most likel...
The Georgetown Center for Social Impact Communication has drawn on their recent research to profile who is most likely spread the word about your cause - and how. The headline is that while most people are active online, that doesn't mean that they focus all their advocacy efforts on the Internet. People spread the word both online and off, just as they donate online and off, just as they shop online and off. The wise nonprofit - and the wise company - recognize you have to meet people in the many real and virtual places they inhabit and provide easy ways of spreading your message wherever they are.
1 / 4 / 2013
2012 Nonprofit Marketing Communications: A Recap of Trends, Tools, and Tactics
The more communications technologies change, the more they stay the same. Budgets are barely budging, staffing is s...
The more communications technologies change, the more they stay the same.
Budgets are barely budging, staffing is scarce, and there's a growing arsenal of tools & techniques to be tinkered with. Julia Reich, Principal of Julia Reich Design surveyed the nonprofit marketing communications scene to find out which strategies, tactics, and activities worked-and which didn't-this past year. Continue reading here.
1 / 4 / 2013
How to Thank your Donors
Over the past couple of weeks, Jennifer Stauss Windrum has worked tirelessly to raise almost $20K. Despite being with...
Over the past couple of weeks, Jennifer Stauss Windrum has worked tirelessly to raise almost $20K. Despite being with her mom 24/7, and going through so much heartache and exhaustion, Jennifer has showered her donors with love by thanking them personally via email, posting on their Facebook wall and in Facebook groups, tweeting them, etc. She is constantly connected to her donors and always extremely grateful. A lot of nonprofits can learn valuable lessons from Jennifer about how to shower your donors with love by personally thanking them. It's worth noting that Jennifer is just a one person shop. Imagine how far your thank you messages could spread with coordinated fundraising and communications departmental efforts. Continue reading here.
1 / 4 / 2013
Many nonprofit organizations dream of having a board matchmaker at its disposal. In reality, many nonprofits already ...
Many nonprofit organizations dream of having a board matchmaker at its disposal. In reality, many nonprofits already have board matchmakers in their midst, who are working tirelessly to recruit new members and strengthen the board. But making that perfect match often eludes many nonprofits, primarily because of a missed connection between where the organization is in its evolution and what kind of board can be the most helpful. So how can you accurately define what makes for an effective board at different stages in an organization's life? Continue reading here.
12 / 21 / 2012
How Content Marketing Is Different - The Terminology
On Tuesday, Kivi Leroux Miller, President of the Nonprofit Marketing Guide.com and 2013 AJFCA Annual Conference guest...
On Tuesday, Kivi Leroux Miller, President of the Nonprofit Marketing Guide.com and 2013 AJFCA Annual Conference guest speaker shared a Theory of Change for nonprofit marketing.
Let's try to clear up some confusion about the terms that are flying around in the nonprofit field. For example, what is "content marketing" and why should nonprofits shift toward it?
Content Marketing: Content marketing for nonprofits is creating and sharing relevant and valuable content that attracts, educates, motivates, and inspires your participants, supporters, and influencers so that they can help you achieve your mission. Continue reading here.
How Content Marketing Is Different, December 6, 2012, Nonprofit Marketing Guide, by Kivi Leroux Miller
12 / 21 / 2012
2013 Mutual of America Community Partnership Award Competition
Applications are now being accepted mutual of americafor the 2013 Mutual of America Community Partnership Award compe...
Applications are now being accepted mutual of americafor the 2013 Mutual of America Community Partnership Award competition, which recognizes and encourages partnerships dedicated to the public good among businesses, government and social sector organizations. Entering its 18th year, the CPA has recognized over 170 partnerships across America, expanding public awareness of their work and helping them attract additional partners and new sponsors.
The Award Guidelines can be viewed here. Applications to enter the 2013 competition must be submitted no later than April 1, 2013.
12 / 21 / 2012
Interfaith Exchange: Faith-based Healthy Lifestyle Programs
In November 2012, sixty Jewish adults completed the fifth and final week of L'Chaim, a Jewish health and fitness ...
In November 2012, sixty Jewish adults completed the fifth and final week of L'Chaim, a Jewish health and fitness program piloted this year at Adat Shalom Synagogue in Farmington Hills, Michigan.
With the pilot concluded, Dr. Kahn and the Adat Shalom leadership are looking at ways to evaluate the success of the program and its ability to encourage sustained lifestyle changes. They are also considering how this program will influence lifestyle choices within the synagogue. Continue reading here.
12 / 21 / 2012
Five Tips for Better Serving Journalists and Media
Here are 5 ways to better serve journalists to up your odds for coverage: Provide imagery and videos. K...
Here are 5 ways to better serve journalists to up your odds for coverage:
- Provide imagery and videos.
- Know which other content forms media crave.
- Populate your press center with what media would want.
- Don't botch their names in pitches.
- The best way to gain a journalist's trust is help serve their needs.
12 / 21 / 2012
8 Ways to Make the Most of Your Year-End Fundraising Campaign
Use this quick checklist to improve your odds of making the most out of this season of giving: Simplify your ...
Use this quick checklist to improve your odds of making the most out of this season of giving:
- Simplify your nonprofit home page to offer one call to action: Donate.
- Make your donate buttons large, colorful and easy to find.
- Send donors straight to your online donation form from appeals and your donate buttons.
- Include your donation link in your Facebook, Twitter and other social profiles.
- Encourage recurring gifts.
- Test your online donation process and fix problems before sending your appeal.
- Include third-party ratings or testimonials on your donation page.
- Create a "Why Donate" page that makes a case for why someone should care.
12 / 14 / 2012
5 Nonprofit Trends to Watch in 2013
Nell Edgington, president of Social Velocity started a tradition in December of 2010 with a blog post on the nonprofi...
Nell Edgington, president of Social Velocity started a tradition in December of 2010 with a blog post on the nonprofit trensocial velocityds to watch in the coming year. Keeping with that tradition, here is her take on the nonprofit trends for 2013. Watch for:
- More Demand for Outcomes
- Decreasing Emphasis on Nonprofit "Overhead"
- More Advocacy for the Sector as a Whole
- Savvier Donors
- Increased Efforts to Rate and Compare Nonprofits
12 / 14 / 2012
A Fundraising Cliff? What Does the Data Say?
There is a lot of speculation about what has been causing the challenges that fundraising is facing in the United Sta...
There is a lot of speculation about what has been causing the challenges that fundraising is facing in the United States. The data shows a troubling trend in the nonprofit sector: Donor populations have been shrinking for the past five years and revenue per donor has been flat. Disaster giving has provided some temporary relief to the situation. Continue reading here.
A Fundraising Cliff? What Does the Data Say? December 11, 2012, Beth's Blog, by Beth Kanter
12 / 14 / 2012
Kick Your Nonprofit Succession Plan to the Curb
There is a lot of talk about succession planning in the nonprofit sector, but for the most part, it's approached ...
There is a lot of talk about succession planning in the nonprofit sector, but for the most part, it's approached in the wrong way. The problem with traditional succession planning is that nonprofits take a too narrow view of nonprofit leadership. It's not enough to have a strong nonprofit executive director or CEO and to create a "succession plan" to guard against their eventual departure. Instead nonprofits need to develop a new approach to leadership that brings many people together to drive strategy. Continue reading here.
Kick Your Nonprofit Succession Plan to the Curb, December 2012, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
12 / 14 / 2012
Onboarding is More Than Orientation
Onboarding is much more than orientation. Managers should think about onboarding as a multi-step process that enables...
Onboarding is much more than orientation. Managers should think about onboarding as a multi-step process that enables new hires to learn and adjust so they can function most effectively and happily in their new organization. ProInspire, a nonprofit dedicated to developing the next generation of social sector leaders by expanding the talent pipeline, developing professionals, and increasing diversity refers to the first three months on the job as "the onboarding period." This phrase comes from a book they give all Fellows before they start: The First 90 Days: Critical Success Strategies for New Leaders at All Levels, by Michael Watkins. Continue reading here.
Onboarding is More Than Orientation, December 7, 2012, Idealist, by Monisha Kapila
12 / 14 / 2012
Messages that Move
To really engage audiences as activists and ambassadors, you have to equip them with a shareworthy message. The ...
To really engage audiences as activists and ambassadors, you have to equip them with a shareworthy message.
The advocacy community has gone mad for story. But stories are only as strong as the latest retelling. While compelling characters and evocative details give stories life, it is email subject lines, tweets, Facebook posts, and headlines that give them legs.
The best stories have a clear message-or moral-that can be repeated over coffee or conveyed in 140 characters. And the messages that move tend to inspire and empower. Continue reading here.
Messages that Move, November 7, 2012, Resource Media, by Nicole Lampe
12 / 7 / 2012
Sandy Recovery Micro-grants from Repair the World
In the wake of Superstorm Sandy's destruction, Repair the World is pleased to offer micro-grants to support winte...
In the wake of Superstorm Sandy's destruction, Repair the World is pleased to offer micro-grants to support winter and spring alternative break programs that focus on Sandy relief and response efforts. Learn more here.
12 / 7 / 2012
Five Steps to Successful Crisis Communications
Is your organization prepared to respond to the next crisis? With more than a month since Superstorm Sandy hit, many ...
Is your organization prepared to respond to the next crisis? With more than a month since Superstorm Sandy hit, many nonprofits are asking the same question: how do we communicate during a crisis like that? It's not an easy situation to be in for anyone. Knowing how to get your message out and how to get support will help position you out in front the next time something like Sandy roars ashore (although hopefully not anytime soon!). Continue reading here.
Five Steps to Successful Crisis Communications, November 12, 2012, NETN, by Meghan Teich
12 / 7 / 2012
Critical Steps to Getting Started in Leadership Development
If The Bridgespan Group's research is any guide, many nonprofits recognize that leadership development is an orga...
If The Bridgespan Group's research is any guide, many nonprofits recognize that leadership development is an organizational imperative but struggle with making it a priority. Over the past several months, The Bridgespan Group has posted articles explaining briefly a few simple actions that nearly any nonprofit can take to implement a systematic process of leadership development. Continue reading here.
Critical Steps to Getting Started in Leadership Development, November 27, 2012, The Bridgespan Group
12 / 7 / 2012
13 New Ways To Make Your LinkedIn Profile Irresistible
If you haven't touched your LinkedIn profile in months or years, it's time to take action.Think of it like a ...
If you haven't touched your LinkedIn profile in months or years, it's time to take action.Think of it like a makeover for your professional image.The site has steadily transformed its profile pages from simple resumes to a smorgasbord of interactive tools for job seeking and networking. It's no longer enough to just list your past jobs and schooling. But you have to log onto the site and use these tools. Ready? Continue reading here.
13 New Ways To Make Your LinkedIn Profile Irresistible, November 16, 2012, Business Insider, by Julie Bort
11 / 30 / 2012
Food Banks Join Kaiser in Program to Offer More Nutritious Fare
Nonprofit insurer Kaiser Permanente and Jewish hunger charity Mazon are launching an effort to stock food pantries wi...
Nonprofit insurer Kaiser Permanente and Jewish hunger charity Mazon are launching an effort to stock food pantries with fresher, healthier fare, the Los Angeles Times wrote. The Healthy Options, Healthy Meals program, announced Monday, will involve 12 food banks in six states and the District of Columbia
Food Banks Join Kaiser in Program to Offer More Nutritious Fare, November 21, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy
11 / 30 / 2012
Do our Compensation Patterns Reflect our Values?
An Initial Analysis of the 2012 Jewish Communal Professional Compensation Survey In the spring of 2012 a group of y...
An Initial Analysis of the 2012 Jewish Communal Professional Compensation Survey
In the spring of 2012 a group of young professionals working in the Jewish communal sector launched a compensation survey of the field. Inspired by the Forward's annual salary survey of executives of Jewish communal organizations, this survey was a grassroots attempt to open the "black box" surrounding compensation data up and down the Jewish professional ladder. Here's a sneak peek at six key findings (the full report is scheduled to appear in the upcoming issue of the Journal of Jewish Communal Service, to be published in early 2013).
Do our Compensation Patterns Reflect our Values? November 8, 2012, eJP, by by Avi Herring, Justin Rosen Smolen, Tamar Snyder, Mordecai Walfish, Ruthie Warshenbrot & Naomi Korb Weiss
11 / 30 / 2012
Elevating Technology on the Boardroom Agenda
Boards are starting to guide management by asking the right questions about technology. Many senior-executive te...
Boards are starting to guide management by asking the right questions about technology.
Many senior-executive teams have been called upon to get involved in technology issues. Boards are also beginning to take a strategic view of how technology trends are shaping their companies' future. More boards than ever before are asking questions that ensure executives focus on the right issues. Continue reading here.
Elevating Technology on the Boardroom Agenda, October 2012, McKinsey Quarterly, by Michael Bloch, Brad Brown & Johnson Sikes
11 / 30 / 2012
Nonprofits and the Economy, Infographic Style
The Rebecca Gordon Group has compiled information from Forbes, the Giving USA report (which NPQ covered in detail), t...
The Rebecca Gordon Group has compiled information from Forbes, the Giving USA report (which NPQ covered in detail), the Chronicle of Philanthropy, Atlas of Giving and Johns Hopkins University to create an intriguing visual guide to the complex ways nonprofits influence the economy. The infographic, titled "Nonprofits' Impact on the Economy," can be seen here.
Nonprofits and the Economy, Infographic Style, November 1, 2012, Nonprofit Quarterly, by Aine Creedon
11 / 30 / 2012
Being a Professional in the Jewish Community
Stephen Donshik has taught and worked for the Jewish community for more than 40 years. All of his experiences have be...
Stephen Donshik has taught and worked for the Jewish community for more than 40 years. All of his experiences have been part of a quest to understand what it means to be a professional in the Jewish community and what it means to supervise and train others to fill professional roles in Jewish communal organizations. Continue reading here.
Being a Professional in the Jewish Community, November 14, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
11 / 30 / 2012
Want to Lose a Good Employee? It's as Easy as 1, 2, 3 (4, 5)
In an economy where some people are having a hard time getting hired, there are people who are walking away from or i...
In an economy where some people are having a hard time getting hired, there are people who are walking away from or in the process of getting ready to walk away from good paying jobs. There are, it seems, people in positions of power who are systematically demotivating and ultimately driving away successful, productive employees. Here are five easy steps to drive productive effective employees out the door.
Want to Lose a Good Employee? It's as Easy as 1, 2, 3, November 10, 2012, Secrets of Success, by Michael Bryant
11 / 21 / 2012
Leadership: 6 Lessons Learned Along My Long and Winding Career Path
Much is being written on leadership transitions these days in the non-profit world in general and especially in the p...
Much is being written on leadership transitions these days in the non-profit world in general and especially in the philanthropy and grantmaking world. It is a worthy topic -- not simply because of the much-touted wealth transfer, and not simply because of the existence of multiple adult generations for the first time in history, but because it forces serious discussion about the nature of work and the workplace in the sector, and what leadership really means at this time in history. Learn about the 6 lessons here.
6 Lessons Learned Along My Long and Winding Career Path, November 11, 2012, eJP, by Richard Marker
11 / 21 / 2012
Why It's Hard to Grow
There is a notable lack of attention paid to growth in the nonprofit sector, and it's not because we're just ...
There is a notable lack of attention paid to growth in the nonprofit sector, and it's not because we're just starting to come out of The Great Recession. There is a larger structural reason why growth is so difficult in the nonprofit sector no matter what the economic outlook. Being able to recognize that reason is the first step in overcoming this structural locked brake.
Why do nonprofits need to grow? All successful private business entities face the same dilemma: the program model or models that were initially successful change over time.
In a process a 20th century economist labeled as "creative destruction," better ideas replace good ones, and newer organizations come along to displace the previous ones. To keep pace, nonprofits need to do their own internal creative destruction, eliminating or modifying old programs and developing new ones, hopefully more of the latter over time. Continue reading here.
Why It's Hard to Grow, November 1, 2012, The Nonprofit Times, by Thomas A. McLaughlin
11 / 21 / 2012
Creating Content: What They Want, or What You Want? Coming Up with an Editorial Calendar That Works for Both
You know that you are supposed to listen to your target audiences and give them what they want to hear from you. But ...
You know that you are supposed to listen to your target audiences and give them what they want to hear from you. But you also have your own agenda full of information you want them to have. How do you bring the two together?
Kivi Leroux Miller, President of the Nonprofit Marketing Guide.com has written a new article that looks at this question from the perspective of two different national organizations that are trying to serve local organizations in the same field. How can they give the locals what they ask for, while also providing what they, the national experts, believe is essential, especially when that creates two different lists of "what's most important"? Read the article to find out.
Creating Content: What They Want, or What You Want? November 15, 2012, Nonprofit Marketing Guide.com, by Kivi Leroux Miller
11 / 21 / 2012
Pinterest Debuts Pages for Nonprofits and Businesses
Last week Pinterest unveiled new free accounts for nonprofits and businesses to help them make better use of the popu...
Last week Pinterest unveiled new free accounts for nonprofits and businesses to help them make better use of the popular social network.
The new accounts don't look any different from personal accounts, but people who manage the new pages will be prompted to verify their Web sites by uploading an HTML file to their server. They will also be asked to add "follow" and "pin it" buttons to their sites.
Pinterest also added two features that allow people to embed pins and boards on other sites more easily.
To learn more about the new accounts and see case studies from businesses, go to business.pinterest.com.
Pinterest Debuts Pages for Nonprofits and Businesses, November 15, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Cody Switzer
11 / 16 / 2012
Human Rights Campaign Releases First-Ever Index of LGBT Inclusion within a Faith-based Community
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) released today its first-ever index of inclusion within a faith-based community. The ...
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) released today its first-ever index of inclusion within a faith-based community. The Jewish Organization Equality Index (JOEI) provides benchmarks for gauging, and resources for improving, LGBT inclusivity policies and practices of North American Jewish communal organizations. The entire report is available at www.hrc.org/joei.
Key findings from the index create a preliminary snapshot of how a broad range of Jewish organizations-from national umbrella and advocacy groups to local nonprofits and synagogues-address LGBT diversity and inclusion in three categories of practice: organizational inclusion efforts, community/client engagement and workplace policies.
AJFCA worked with HRC to help them develop the JOEI survey and also promoted it to our agencies. AJFCA had several Jewish social service agencies that participated in the JOEI survey. A list of participating agencies can be found in the appendix of the report.
Human Rights Campaign Releases First-Ever Index of LGBT Inclusion within a Faith-based Community, November 12, 2012, Human Rights Campaign, by Paul Guequierre
11 / 16 / 2012
November - National Adoption Awareness Month
Each year, November is recognized as National Adoption Awareness Month. While all adoption-related issues are importa...
Each year, November is recognized as National Adoption Awareness Month. While all adoption-related issues are important, the particular focus of this month is the adoption of children currently in foster care.
2012 is an exciting year for National Adoption Month. As it always has been and as it always will be, the focus for November is finding loving, permanent homes for the foster children who are waiting to be adopted. But this year marks a modern twist--social media and digital efforts. This year's theme is: "National Adoption Month--Virtually: Adoption in the Digital Age." The U.S. Department of Human Services knows that social media and social networking allow information to be shared easily, quickly, and effectively, and this month's focus is on sharing, educating, and informing others about the 104,000 foster children in the United States who are currently waiting to find their forever families. Continue reading here.
11 / 9 / 2012
The Alumni Advisory Board Model: Empowering the "Next Generation" Now
This article provides several key insights in engaging younger Jews on your agency's board. Although presented in...
This article provides several key insights in engaging younger Jews on your agency's board. Although presented in the context of an alumni program - it is easily translated to the context of a social service agency. Naamah Paley, a Bronfman Fellowships alumna stated, "just as young Jews need to better understand the value of governance and participation on boards, most established boards need to better understand the value of young voices".
Does your board include any members under the age of 40? Are you working on initiatives to foster young leadership for a more sustainable future? If you think you have a great model of young adult engagement in your agency - please contact Jennie Gates Beckman, AJFCA's Manager of Civic Engagement & Repair the World Programming, who is conducting an inventory of young adult engagement in our network.
The Alumni Advisory Board Model: Empowering the "Next Generation" Now, October 17, 2012, eJP, by Naamah Paley
11 / 9 / 2012
The Right Words Do Make a Difference in Your Proposal
An often overlooked mistake that nonprofit staff make is the effective use of Impact Words. When used effectively, th...
An often overlooked mistake that nonprofit staff make is the effective use of Impact Words. When used effectively, these words can convey to the grantmaker that the organization is experienced and competent.
Upon completing a grant proposal, review it, or better yet, have someone who has not been involved with the proposal review it and weed out the weak and ambiguous words. Replace them with Impact Words that clearly demonstrate your organization's strengths and expertise. In the end, words do make a difference. Click here to read the entire article.
Examples of Impact Words include:
- Provides evidence
11 / 9 / 2012
Six Tips for Negotiating a Nonprofit Compensation Package
One of the biggest-and sometimes most intimidating-challenges people at all levels face in their careers is negotiati...
One of the biggest-and sometimes most intimidating-challenges people at all levels face in their careers is negotiating a compensation package. It can be particularly difficult for senior nonprofit executives. Most executives only go through this process a couple of times in their careers. By following a few simple guidelines, the process can be quick, stress free, and result in a package that will satisfy both parties.
ajfca logo-resized As a member of the AJFCA network you have the annual compensation survey as a complimentary tool for use in negotiating a compensation package. The survey report is located in AJFCA's Resource Library, housed in the For Our Members portion on the AJFCA website. Stay tuned for AJFCA's 2012 compensation survey, which will be sent via email in the next few weeks. Feel free to contact Megan with questions. Learn more about The Bridgespan Group's simple guidelines here.
Six Tips for Negotiating a Nonprofit Compensation Package, October 31, 2012, The Bridgespan Group, by Thomas J. Friel
11 / 9 / 2012
Predictive Program Evaluation: Don't React, Predict
Any type of program evaluation tends to be reactive: something went right, so we keep on doing it, or something went ...
Any type of program evaluation tends to be reactive: something went right, so we keep on doing it, or something went wrong, so we try to fix it. Reacting is better than not acting at all, but relying solely on the after-the-fact "what happened?" -- often gathered ad-hoc in spreadsheets and anecdotal stories -- fails to take into account the hidden patterns that lie within the data as well as the dynamic factors that accompany reality.
By leveraging all of our available data and analyzing it, we can move from reaction to prediction, uncovering program inhibitors and drivers to predict how our programs will perform and what to do now to make them better. We call this predictive program evaluation, which is fueled by predictive analytics. Learn how to truly understand the power of a predictive program evaluation solution here.
Predictive Program Evaluation: Don't React, Predict, October 2, 2012, NTEN, by Mary Grace Bateman
11 / 2 / 2012
Innovation to What End?
In just a few weeks, the eighth volume of Slingshot will be shipped to thousands of not-for-profit leaders, community...
In just a few weeks, the eighth volume of Slingshot will be shipped to thousands of not-for-profit leaders, community volunteers, Jewish community institutions, and funders of all ages. Slingshot is a Zagat-style guide to Jewish life. Each year, through a rigorous evaluation process, we select the 50 most innovative projects and organizations in Jewish life across North America. The selected organizations often receive increased funding, press, and volunteer attention. Click here to read the entire article.
Innovation to What End? October 23, 2012, Jewish Communal Fund, by Will Schneider
11 / 2 / 2012
Elizabeth Leinman Kraiem, Executive Director of the Jewish Foundation for Education of Women has noticed recently tha...
Elizabeth Leinman Kraiem, Executive Director of the Jewish Foundation for Education of Women has noticed recently that many organizations, especially in the Jewish world, are putting timelines on their websites. Timelines are decidedly old media, yet a combination of technology and chronology has made them new again. What else might explain their current popularity? What organizational and social needs do timelines address? Here are some observations about the role of timelines in organizations and short reflections on why this is a time for timelines. Review the observations and reflections here.
Timelines, October 24, 2012, eJP, by Elizabeth Leiman Kraiem
11 / 2 / 2012
Monitoring and Improving Leadership Development Practices
To succeed at leadership development, you need to know whether your efforts are producing the leaders you will need. ...
To succeed at leadership development, you need to know whether your efforts are producing the leaders you will need. Use these four steps to determine what's working and what's not to ensure your efforts are getting results. Continue reading here.
11 / 2 / 2012
2012 Consumers Guide to Low Cost Content Management Systems
Idealware has released the Consumers Guide to Low Cost Content Management Systems, published in partnership with Beac...
Idealware has released the Consumers Guide to Low Cost Content Management Systems, published in partnership with Beaconfire Consulting.This report reviews 11 Content Management Systems, which allow organizations to build and update their websites. Targeted at nonprofits looking to replace an existing Content Management System or implement one for the first time, this report is relatively easy for someone with a non-technical background to understand- but not so basic that it won't be of value for the technically savvy. Idealware has also included a directory of consultants with experience helping nonprofits install and implement the systems covered in this report.
10 / 26 / 2012
Board Member Fundraising
The latest Nonpnonprofit research collaborativerofit Research Collaborative study on board member engagement in fundr...
The latest Nonpnonprofit research collaborativerofit Research Collaborative study on board member engagement in fundraising concludes, among other things, that board members serve two primary fundraising functions: helping the organization reach new prospective donors (access) and indicating the organization's value to the community by their own association with the group (signaling).
Click here to learn more about the various methods used by board members to raise funds.
Board Member Fundraising, October 19, 2012, Nonprofit Research Collaborative, by Melissa S. Brown
10 / 26 / 2012
The Three Kinds of Internal Measurement Tools
The key to success is to first determine your communication goals. That, experts agree, should come well before even ...
The key to success is to first determine your communication goals. That, experts agree, should come well before even considering which tool you might use.
This is the first article in a four-part content series on internal email measurement. This series, in partnership with PoliteMail, will offer tips and multiple ways to improve your internal email communications.
Click here to learn about the three options.
The Three Kinds of Internal Measurement Tools, October 23, 2012, ragan.com, by Matt Wilson
10 / 26 / 2012
What Marketers Need to Know About the New Foursquare Search
Foursquare announced a redesign of their homepage this week with the emphasis on discovery by opening up Foursquare E...
Foursquare announced a redesign of their homepage this week with the emphasis on discovery by opening up Foursquare Explore for everyone to discover popular places to go, member or not.
After shifting to more of a decision-based engine earlier this year, they are furthering their position as a leader for local social exploration.
With more than 25 million users worldwide, Foursquare has established a database of millions of unique insights about local things to do and see. By slowly introducing new product features like tips, to-do's, lists, and most recently likes and local updates with Foursquare Explore, they have built themselves quite the robust engine to serve up point-based recommendations to anyone now.
Read more about the new Foursquare search here.
What Marketers Need to Know About the New Foursquare Search, October 18, 2012, SocialFresh.com, by Nick Cicero
10 / 26 / 2012
Merging May Be Best Route to Growth
Back in the '90s, Hilda Polanco, a CPA with a staff of 10, had an out-of-the-box idea. She realized that nonprofi...
Back in the '90s, Hilda Polanco, a CPA with a staff of 10, had an out-of-the-box idea. She realized that nonprofits had a real need for a cost-effective way to professionalize accounting and financial management but no one was providing that service. It was the perfect way to differentiate her service from other accounting practices.ventureneer
- Know your goals and the best way to accomplish them
- Build relationships before you need them
- Know what you want from a partnership
The keys to Polanco's success were those two invaluable tools every entrepreneur must have and use: planning and networking. She clearly defined what she wanted to do, then she laid out what she really needed from a partner and what she could bring to the relationship.
Read the remainder of the article here.
Merging May Be Best Route to Growth, October 18, 2012, Ventureneer, by Geri Stengel
10 / 26 / 2012
A Leap of . . . Entrepreneurship? Finding a Place for Faith in Social Innovation
In today's world, an average conversation about leaders in entrepreneurship and innovation would likely include r...
In today's world, an average conversation about leaders in entrepreneurship and innovation would likely include references to Mark Zuckerberg's Facebook, Jack Dorsey of Square and Twitter fame; TOMS shoes founder Blake Mycoskie, and any number of other names frequently cited in Wired, Fast Company, The New York Times, and Bloomberg Businessweek.
This past August, Rebecca McQuigg Rigal, trend analyst attended a forum on faith-based social innovation - co-hosted by Jewish Jumpstart, a research & design lab for Jewish and interreligious innovation & social entrepreneurship, and Community Partners, a secular ideas incubator - at the Center for Healthy Communities in downtown Los Angeles. As it turned out, Rigal was in good company, as she came to find that many of the attendees - most of whom already tread quite deep in this space - had been having a broader conversation about the subject of faith-based social innovation and interfaith collaboration for quite some time. Rigal also realized that there was a lot to learn - not just about how faith-based organizations can inspire innovation but also how interfaith collaborations can surface highly effective entrepreneurial initiatives from which the secular world can draw.
Read the entire article here.
A Leap of . . . Entrepreneurship? October 22, 2012, eJP, by Rebecca McQuigg Rigal
10 / 26 / 2012
Access New National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare Video Courses Through The Essential Learning Library
Thanks to Essential Learning's exclusive training partnership with the National Council for Community Behavioral ...
Thanks to Essential Learning's exclusive training partnership with the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, the release of new video courses based on sessions at the 2012 National Council conference are available.
National Council Video Courses Include:
- Beyond EBPs: Using Science, Culture Change and Collaboration to Improve Outcomes for Children
- Comorbid Mental and Physical Conditions: Preparing for New Treatment Expectations
- Disaster Response: Five Key Strategies
- Does Your Organization Measure Up: Are You Really Trauma-informed?
- Ending Suicide: How Many Deaths Are Acceptable?
- Practical Strategies for Engaging Families and Children
- Promoting Recovery for Adults with Behavioral Health Needs under Criminal Justice Supervision
- Research-Informed Practices to Treat Children and Strengthen Families
National Council video courses are just some of the exciting learning opportunities that await you in our library. Schedule a conversation with Essential Learning today, to view video courses.
10 / 19 / 2012
Capitalizing on Emerging Jewish Charitable Markets: New Donors, New Causes and the New Normal
As expressed in several of eJewish Philanthropy's previous articles, recent trends indicate that generational, ge...
As expressed in several of eJewish Philanthropy's previous articles, recent trends indicate that generational, geographic, and gender shifts, as well as the expanded use of social media, have significantly influenced philanthropy and have created new and some worrisome trends in giving. Notably, Jewish causes are receiving decreased financial support, especially from Jewish donors who are now especially giving to causes outside of the Jewish community.
Specifically, two of the largest Jewish organizations in the United States have experienced a dramatic loss in their donor base. According to their latest tax filings, the Anti-Defamation League has lost more than $20 million in annual contributions over the past five years, going from more than $73 million in 2006 down to $51 million in 2010. Similarly, the American Jewish Committee, which brought in $62 million in donations in 2005, raised only $38 million in 2010.
Click here to learn more about new donors, new causes and the new normal.
Capitalizing on Emerging Jewish Charitable Markets: New Donors, New Causes and the New Normal, October 16, 2012, by Robert I. Evans & Avrum D. Lapin
10 / 19 / 2012
Moving Beyond Natural Disasters: How Global Development Organizations are Using Mobile Phones to Engage Supporters
The rise of mobile phones in recent years has substantially affected the work of global development organizations, an...
The rise of mobile phones in recent years has substantially affected the work of global development organizations, and a few high-profile examples have made the news, such as the large-scale mobile-giving campaigns to provide relief following the 2010 Haiti earthquake and Japan's 2011 tsunami. But beyond natural disasters, can organizations-including smaller nonprofits-make use of the technology by applying the model on a more-suitable scale?
Idealware talked to four large global development organizations and two consultants to find out how they're using mobile technology to reach out to constituents, and whether smaller organizations can emulate their methods. This report highlights their approaches to a number of different technologies, including mobile websites, texting, mobile giving, QR codes and mobile apps: what they're using, what's working and what's not.
This 26-page report provides an overview of what Idealware learned as well as detailed case studies of four organizations-Save the Children, American Jewish World Services, Heifer International and the Salvation Army-using mobile in interesting ways to see what smaller organizations in all sectors can learn from their experience.
Moving Beyond Natural Disasters: How Global Development Organizations are Using Mobile Phones to Engage Supporters, October 2012, Idealware
10 / 19 / 2012
Senior Fundraisers and CEO's Don't See Eye to Eye
As turnover among fundraisers becomes a growing problem for nonprofits, a new study suggests that the revolving door ...
As turnover among fundraisers becomes a growing problem for nonprofits, a new study suggests that the revolving door in development offices may be due to a big gap in how chief executives and development officers see the process of attracting donations.
The study, conducted by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, questioned 70 community-college leaders and 137 chief fundraisers at such institutions.
The biggest difference between those interviewed came when they were asked whether the top fundraisers had the resources they needed to increase giving.
Fifty-five percent of chief executives said their fundraisers had what they needed, but only 24 percent of chief development officers said the same.
Other differences were also stark: For example, 89 percent of the chief executives said they understand thechronicle philanthropy fundraising process, but only 63 percent of the senior fundraisers said their chief executive did.
Among the other findings:
- More than two-thirds of chief executives said they actively "cultivate" donors, while only 60 percent of chief development officers agreed.
- Chief executives rated themselves higher than senior fundraisers did in spending an appropriate amount of time on raising money (44 percent versus 30 percent), on being comfortable asking for money (82 percent versus 55 percent), and actively thanking and showing appreciation to donors (68 percent versus 59 percent).
What about the top fundraisers and executives at your organization? Is a lack of understanding about fundraising issues causing turnover and other problems?
Senior Fundraisers and CEO's Don't See Eye to Eye, October 11, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Holly Hall
10 / 19 / 2012
Grants: 6 Six Principles For Acquisition Work
Facing vast funding demands, nonprofit boards all too often assign the executive director the quixotic task of slayin...
Facing vast funding demands, nonprofit boards all too often assign the executive director the quixotic task of slaying every dragon with a grant. The roof is falling in? Get a grant. Can't afford administrative salaries? Get a grant.
According to Barbara A. Floersch, director of The Grantsmanship Center in Los Angeles, a successful grant acquisition program can do a lot, but not everything. It's just one element of what should be a diverse fund development plan. To set your grant acquisition work on the right track, keep these six principles in mind.
- A grant is a transaction in which your organization receives money to perform an activity that will achieve an agreed upon result. A grant is an obligation, not free money.
- Grants should respond to needs identified through a planning or assessment process. Successful grants aren't based on what someone thinks, believes, or assumes. They're based on facts.
- To win grants, you need an informed view of what grants can and can't do. Grants aren't for erasing deficits or rescuing organizations that are collapsing because board members and administrators have been asleep at the wheel, according to Floersch.
- A grant acquisition program must be based on solid research on grantmakers and government funding programs. You've got to understand what funders are interested in and what they actually support. Spraying hundreds of foundations with generic requests and then praying for results (the spray and pray approach) will get you nowhere.
- With foundation and corporate grantmakers, relationships matter. The grant acquisition effort should work hand-in-hand with the board and administration to build and maintain targeted relationships.
- The grants effort requires support from many within the organization-it's not a one-person job. Administrators, human resources, finance, and program management must be involved.
For more info on grants, go to www.tgci.com.
Grants: 6 Six Principles For Acquisition Work, October 10, 2012, The Nonprofit Times
10 / 19 / 2012
How to Diagnose and Survive the Current Facebook Reach Drought
Over the past few week or so there have been a lot of rumors about Facebook decreasing Pages' Reach. EdgeRank Che...
Over the past few week or so there have been a lot of rumors about Facebook decreasing Pages' Reach. EdgeRank Checker released a quick study looking at how Pages have been impacted by this suspected change if you want to read more about the shift.
In summary, it was found that organic reach is down 25%, viral reach is down 45%, and engagement decreased 17%, while virality marginally increased 7%. The rumored date that this change went into affect is September 20th, according to Ogilvy. So the above research was ran for the week prior to September 20th and the week after September 20th.
As more data is collected in the coming weeks, EdgeRank Checker will get a clearer view of the trend, but it is clear a shift has occurred.
Click here to see how the change affected your Facebook page, what you can do to improve your reach, and what Facebook has to say about all this.
How to Diagnose and Survive the Current Facebook Reach Drought, October 11, 2012, SocialFresh.com, by Chad Wittman
10 / 12 / 2012
Inclusion and Access: Good Intentions, Bad Habits
A month or so ago, there was great discussion around the web about inclusion relating to an incident at Camp Ramah Ca...
A month or so ago, there was great discussion around the web about inclusion relating to an incident at Camp Ramah Canada. Nechama Cohen, founder of Makom Lekulam - A Place For All closely followed the fiejp full logorestorm, mostly in order to try and understand the way the different writers use the terms "inclusion" and "access."
As an initiator and developer of an educational program for schools in Israel, Nechama tried to teach using language that promotes an accessible society. In that language, "access" means:
- Viewing the world through the eyes of the other.
- Seeing each person as an entirety - to see past the disability, limitation or impairment, and relate to the person in front of you with all their abilities and achievements as well.
Click here to read how Nechama learned how easy it is to forget what inclusion and access really mean.
Inclusion and Access: Good Intentions, Bad Habits, October 9, 2012, eJP, by Nechama Cohen
10 / 12 / 2012
Now, More Than Ever, Collaboration Matters
In an increasingly complex and interconnected world, solving social problems is beyond the reach of any single sector...
In an increasingly complex and interconnected world, solving social problems is beyond the reach of any single sector or actor. Our most complex challenges are best addressed through collaborative approaches, involving public, private and nonprofit sectors bringing together diverse knowledge, strategy and connections to turn vision into social change.
New technologies, new leaders and new money are changing the language and methods of philanthropy and nonprofits. This new energy and innovation are driving philanthropists to think big and invest in people and startups with similar passions and theories of change. Meanwhile, the changing roles of the public and private sectors, together with nonprofits and individual citizens' commitment to social innovation, increasingly require collaboration among diverse networks of nonprofits, foundations, businesses, social entrepreneurs and governments.
Collaborations have the potential to reach a wider range of ideas, leverage more resources, and find innovative solutions.
Yet, collaboration is not easy. Click here to read the entire article and learn more.
Now, More Than Ever, Collaboration Matters, October 10, 2012, eJP, by Helena Monteiro
10 / 12 / 2012
Medicare Open Enrollment Tips for Counselors
Medicare open enrollment is just around the corner (Oct. 15th -Dec. 7th). Whether you're a person with Medicare, ...
Medicare open enrollment is just around the corner (Oct. 15th -Dec. 7th). Whether you're a person with Medicare, a caregiver, or professional helping clients to review their coverage options, NCOA has some helpful tips for you to keep in mind this season.
Tips for Counselors
- Remind your clients that change can be a good thing. Many clients are reluctant to switch plans, believing that if their current plan covers all of their medications, it must be good. However, a little research can equal huge savings. Such was the case with Ralph, a 75-year-old Virginian with limited income who had drug coverage through a former employer that cost him more than $300 each month. Ralph's counselor helped him to switch prescription plans and enroll in LIS, which ended up saving him $230 each month. Tell clients that small savings can add up, and therefore it is important that they review their coverage options annually.
- Use the opportunity to think holistically. If you encounter clients that are struggling to pay the costs of their health care, chances are they may also have trouble paying for food, rent, utilities, and more. Make clients aware of the range of programs that may be available to help them out. Find out who in your community can help with benefits program applications, and have referral information readily available. You don't have to do this alone. You can also encourage clients who are comfortable with the internet to use BenefitsCheckUp to conduct a free, confidential screening.
- Take advantage of NCOA's resources. NCOA updates our counselor resources regularly. Some that may be particularly useful for open enrollment include:
2013 Open Enrollment Toolkit
Part D Updates
Guide to 2012 Fall/Winter Mailings
What to Expect in 2013
All of NCOA's materials are for public use, so you're welcome to copy and paste them to use with your staff, volunteers, and clients. Need a resource in a different format? Write to NCOA, and they'll be happy to send it to you.
Medicare Open Enrollment Tips for Counselors, October 2, 2012, NCOA
10 / 12 / 2012
Nominate Your Exceptional Board Members
BoardSource and Points of Light have launched the Board Member of the Month Award, which will honor outstanding indiv...
BoardSource and Points of Light have launched the Board Member of the Month Award, which will honor outstanding individuals for their commitment to advancing the public good through exceptional nonprofit board leadership.
Nominees will be evaluated on:
- their record of excellence in board leadership
- their strong commitment to their organization
- the positive impact their actions have had on the advancement of their organization's mission
Award winners will:
- receive a complimentary registration to the Points of Light National Conference on Volunteering and Service, the world's largest gathering of volunteer and service leaders from the nonprofit, corporate, and government sectors
- receive a complimentary registration to the BoardSource Leadership Forum, the only national conference that brings together hundreds of nonprofit leaders and experts to focus on the impact of nonprofit boards and the unique role they play in advancing the public good
- gain access to hundreds of resources on nonprofit governance and a network of more than 24,000 nonprofit leaders through a complimentary year of individual membership in BoardSource
- become candidates for the Board Member of the Year Award, which will be presented at a jointly hosted signature event, beginning in 2013
- be publicly recognized for their exceptional service on the Points of Light and BoardSource Web sites, in each organization's newsletters, and through various media channels
10 / 5 / 2012
7 Board Activities Can Help Charities Bring In More Money
Charities are more likely to meet fundraising success when their boards pursue at least seven types of fundraising ac...
Charities are more likely to meet fundraising success when their boards pursue at least seven types of fundraising activities, such as holding events and seeking gifts from friends, according to a new study.
The study-conducted by the Nonprofit Research Collaborative-assessed the use of 11 approaches to involving board members by examining the progress of 1,602 nonprofits in meeting their 2011 fundraising goals.
Below is a list of what the board can do and here's a podcast on one idea of how to energize people in the community to participate.
The techniques studied were:
- Sharing their contact lists.
- Seeking contributions from friends or associates.
- Securing sponsorships from companies.
- Making personal introductions to potential donors.
- Visiting prospective donors.
- Hosting a fundraising event.
- Allowing the use of the board member's name in solicitations and other materials.
- Chairing fundraising events.
- Thanking donors.
- Rating prospective donors on their ability to give.
- Helping develop fundraising plans.
The study found that the power of board members to help nonprofits achieve their fundraising goals varied by the nonprofit's size:
- Organizations with budgets under $3-million were more likely to succeed when their boards helped in a wide range of solicitations.
- For charities with budgets of $3-million to $10-million, the number of fundraising activities pursued by trustees didn't matter as much. But those who met their fundraising goals were most likely to be successful when their trustees asked others to give, allowed their names to be used in solicitations, or rated potential donors on their ability to give.
- Among charities with budgets of $10-million or more, getting the board personally involved in reaching out to other supporters increased the chances of fundraising success.
10 / 5 / 2012
The Opportunity and Constraint of Mobile
Katya's heard a lot of smart people talking about mobile the last few months, and two consistent themes are worth...
Katya's heard a lot of smart people talking about mobile the last few months, and two consistent themes are worth sharing.
First, mobile is a huge opportunity. It allows us to reach people at new moments, including dawn (66% wake up with their phone). More and more, people will be opening emails and visiting sites on their smartphone. Around 67% of people already shop on their phone. Just as giving has followed but lagged online shopping trends, the same will prove true with mobile. So the headline here is, mobile will bring a whole new set of possibilities to your work.
But while mobile expands the ways in which we can engage with people, we need to recognize that we win by seeing not only opportunity but also constraint. We can't shrink down our website or giving page, stick it on smartphone and call it a day. No one wants massive amounts of options on a tiny screen. So we have to make hard choices about what we will feature on mobile. Less is more. We must have complete simplicity in design and choices, or it won't work at all.
Embrace the potential, but also the limitations.
The Opportunity and Constraint of Mobile, October 2, 2012, Katya's Nonprofit Marketing Blog, by Katya Andersen
10 / 5 / 2012
Big Data Without Defining Success First Is A Big Mistake
With the release of the "Measuring the Networked Nonprofit: Using Data to Change the World", author B...
With the release of the "Measuring the Networked Nonprofit: Using Data to Change the World", author Beth Kanter is looking forward to participating in conversations about how nonprofits can use measurement, data, and learning to for social change.
"Big Data" is a theme being discussed this past month in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. It refers to large data sets that require powerful software tools to capture, storage, search, sharing, analysis, visualization and sense-making.
Here's a terrific round up of posts about "big data for small nonprofits" from Wild Apricot. But Beth thinks jumping into a process: "Gather, Analyze, and Act" without defining success (or failure) on the front end might lead to wasted time.
- Define results
- Identify research to formulate a hypothesis
- Identify KPIs
- Gather data
- Jutjitsu data
- Make decisions based on data
9 / 28 / 2012
The Eight-Word Mission Statement
Whatever windy drivel they might put forward as a corporate mission statement, mainstream for-profit businesses have ...
Whatever windy drivel they might put forward as a corporate mission statement, mainstream for-profit businesses have a clear, central mission: make money for shareholders. Some do it more sustainably, some are nicer about it, but they're all in the same boat. If they have a bad idea or execute poorly on a good one, they fail in their mission and eventually go out of business.
Mission statements in the social sector are often the same kind of word-salad, but there isn't a common raison d'etre. As investors in impact, the Mulago Foundation-doesn't want to wade through a bunch of verbiage about "empowerment," "capacity-building," and "sustainability"-they want to know exactly what you're trying to accomplish. They want to cut to the chase, and the tool that works for them is the eight-word mission statement. All they want is this:
A verb, a target population, and an outcome that implies something to measure-and they want in eight words or less.
Why eight words? It just seems to work. It's long enough to be specific and short enough to force clarity. Save kids' lives in Uganda. Rehabilitate coral reefs in the Western Pacific. Prevent maternal-child transmission of HIV in Africa. Get Zambian farmers out of poverty. These statements tell us exactly what the organization has set out to accomplish. Once we've got it, we know whether they are working on something that fits our own mission, and we have a useful starting point for any subsequent conversations.
Click here to read the entire article and see why 8 is sufficient to create a powerful mission statement.
The Eight-Word Mission Statement, September 18, 2012, Stanford Social Innovation Review, by Kevin Starr
9 / 28 / 2012
Incentives and Young Jewish Adults: The Questions We Should Be Asking
It is no secret that in order to attract young adult participants, the organized Jewish community has readily provide...
It is no secret that in order to attract young adult participants, the organized Jewish community has readily provided incentives in exchange for participating in various programs. These incentives take on different forms, from free trips to Israel, to subsidized housing, to discounted JCC memberships, to the provision of free alcohol at events. There are even programs that go so far as to pay young adults to study Jewish topics. Knowing that we as a community are using incentives, it's essential that we use them responsibly, and to do all that we can to ensure that donor dollars used to provide them are having the greatest impact possible.
- What will the long-term impact of this particular incentive be?
- What are we doing to meaningfully evaluate the incentives themselves?
- What does this mean going forward?
The greatest challenge of all will be countering the historic tendency of Jewish organizations to embrace a narrative of "if it isn't broken, don't fix it," and having it shift to a narrative of "how can we constantly be improving and striving to most efficiently and effectively utilize donor dollars?" Admittedly such a shift will be difficult, but in a Jewish communal world that is contracting, and with donors (rightfully) demanding accountability and data, it is essential.
Read the entire article here.
Incentives and Young Jewish Adults: The Questions We Should Be Asking, September 20, 2012, eJP, by Daniel S. Horwitz
9 / 28 / 2012
Everything social freshYou Need To Know About the New Twitter Profiles
A new Twitter profile design launched on September 18th on the Today Show. Twitter has added a nice "header"...
A new Twitter profile design launched on September 18th on the Today Show. Twitter has added a nice "header" image for all profiles in the right hand column. This header image also serves as a background image for the Twitter profile image, bio, location, and link.
How To Get It -The new profile design has rolled out to everyone, but the old Twitter profile design will remain for your account until you decide to upload a header image. To check to see if you can access the new profile go to Twitter.com/settings/design and upload a "header" image. It will be right above your background image options.
Old Enhanced Profiles - If you are a brand that previously had the enhanced profile page (EPP), this new design will replace the old wider banner image. EPP advertising partners will still be able to pin Twitter to the top of their Twitter profile.
Background Image Tweaks -Along with this rollout, Twitter has taken the opportunity to improve their background image functionality as well. "Twitter users now have more control of the creative elements within the background image on their profile page. The new design gives marketers the flexibility to align the image and, therefore, use both left and right side of the background image to display rich, engaging content. The photos module on the profile page has also been enhanced to show the most recent six images a user has shared."
More Examples - And of course, with any new combination of a cover photo and profile images, there are already users that have started creating clever visual hacks.
With this new addition, the header image will display really well atop profiles on Twitter's mobile apps for iPhone, iPad, and Android. Similar to Facebook and Path mobile profiles. Since the new profile launched on The Today Show, it looks like NBC had a little lead time as many of their Twitter profiles already have the new design implemented.
Everything You Need To Know About the New Twitter Profiles, September 18, 2012, SocialFresh.com, by Jason Keath
9 / 28 / 2012
Get Ready for Year-End Fundraising
Supporters choose to donate to organizations for a variety of reasons. While most of the time you're better off f...
Supporters choose to donate to organizations for a variety of reasons. While most of the time you're better off focusing on the emotional side of giving, at the end of the year data shows you can get away with an appeal that's focused on the financial side because people love tax deductions.
Now is the time to focus on building stronger relationships with supporters to lay the groundwork for a big year-end giving season. By checking these items off your list now, you can strengthen the vital relationships that will set your organization up for a strong holiday giving season. Here are five tips to help you kick off your holiday fundraising now:
- First things first: Make sure your organization can accept online donations.
- Determine the fixes/updates you can make prior to December to your organization's website.
- Become friendly with an email marketing tool to communicate with your donors regularly - not just when you're asking for money.
- Get your story straight. Passion about your work is infectious, but too often fundraisers sap the emotion and color from our work when we seek to put it into words.
- Make a plan.Tips 1-4 get right to the practical heart of your marketing strategy. Don't forget to take a step back to plan ahead.
Read more about year-end fundraising here.
Get Ready for Year-End Fundraising, June 29, 2010, Network for Good, by Rebecca Higman and Julie Stofer
9 / 28 / 2012
Why Can't We Sell Charity Like We Sell Perfume?
Today, Americans are the world's most generous contributors to philanthropic causes. Each year, we give about 2% ...
Today, Americans are the world's most generous contributors to philanthropic causes. Each year, we give about 2% of our GDP to nonprofit organizations, nearly twice as much as the U.K., the next closest nation, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy. Some 65% of all American households with an income of less than $100,000 donate to some type of charity, according to the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, as does nearly every household with an income greater than $100,000. These contributions average out to about $732 a year for every man, woman and child in America.
Yet we cling to a puritan approach to how those donations are spent: Self-deprivation is our strategy for social change. The dysfunction at the heart of our approach is neatly captured by our narrow, negative label for the charitable sector: "not-for-profit."
It's time to change how society thinks about charity and social reform. The donating public is obsessed with restrictions-nonprofits shouldn't pay executives too much, or spend a lot on overhead or take risks with donated dollars. It should be asking whether these organizations have what they need to actually solve problems. The conventional wisdom is that low costs serve the higher good. But this view is killing the ability of nonprofits to make progress against our most pressing problems. Long-term solutions require investment in things that don't show results in the short term.
We have two separate rule books: one for charity and one for the rest of the economic world. The result is discrimination against charities in five critical areas.
Read the entire article here.
Why Can't We Sell Charity Like We Sell Perfume? September 14, 2012, The Wall Street Journal, by Dan Pallotta
9 / 21 / 2012
LinkedIn Offers Tool to Help Charities Recruit Board Members
LinkedIn, the professional networking site, has announced a free new service called Board Connect to help charities r...
LinkedIn, the professional networking site, has announced a free new service called Board Connect to help charities recruit board members who have much-needed skills.
LinkedIn offers charities a place to post detailed information about their organization and the professional and volunteer connections of its board members and other leaders.
Through Board Connect, groups can then search LinkedIn for potential new board members by listing skills that would be helpful, such as an accounting or legal background, job title, nonprofit affiliations, and other characteristics. Board Connect returns a list of people who meet those criteria and have connections to one or more board members or staff members at the nonprofit.
To be eligible for the service, an official from each charity must complete a short questionnaire, provide proof of the organization's tax-exempt status, and participate in a 45-minute Webcast that describes how to use Board Connect.
Before it created Board Connect, LinkedIn officials held 20 focus groups with charities and others, conducted a survey of its members, and recruited four organizations to test the idea: Charter Board Partners, Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, NewSchools Venture Fund, and Teach for America.
Board Connect is an effort to "build in philanthropic impact for LinkedIn," said Reid Hoffman, the company's co-founder, who announced the new service at the annual conference of BoardSource, which works to strengthen charity boards. With more than 175 million people now using LinkedIn to detail their professional expertise, Mr. Hoffman said, the company is in a good position to help charities find qualified trustees.
LinkedIn Offers Tool to Help Charities Recruit Board Members, September 18, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Holly Hall
9 / 21 / 2012
Who's Your Favorite Domestic Violence Activist?
Again this October, in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness month, Jewish Woman magazine plans to run profiles about ...
Again this October, in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness month, Jewish Woman magazine plans to run profiles about four Jewish women who are activists in the field. JWI needs your help to identify inspiring women at the local, state or national levels who passionately take a stand against domestic violence in their professional or volunteer lives. This will be one of several public awareness efforts from JWI next month.
The women JWI wrote about last year included Esta Soler, the pioneering founder of Futures Against Violence, one of the world's leading violence prevention agencies; Naomi Berman-Potash, founder of Project Debby, which enables domestic violence victims to receive temporary shelter in complimentary hotel rooms; social worker Toby Myers, "mother of the Texas battered women's movement;" and attorney Beth Klein, author of pivotal legislation to help prosecutors fight human trafficking. You can read JWI's 2011 story, "The Power of Advocacy" on their website.
9 / 21 / 2012
Groundwire's 10 Rules of Engagement
At Groundwire, they design and build strategies and tools to help organizations better engage the people that matter ...
At Groundwire, they design and build strategies and tools to help organizations better engage the people that matter most to their missions. Over the years they've come up with ten rules that are key to excelling as an engagement organization:
- Understand your theory of change
- Identify your key audiences
- Know what you want them to do
- Know why they would do it
- Have a plan for what's next
- Use an engagement framework
- Use an engagement platform
- Don't forget the middle of your pyramid
- Love your data
- Constituents = friends
Finally, when you think about growing your volunteer pool or donor list, try to be in the mindset that you're in when you make friends. This is the most important rule, and also the easiest because we all know how to make friends, and what it takes to keep friendships strong. You need to be a good listener, lend a hand once in a while, respect their opinions, and show gratitude when a friend does you a favor. You need to give as much as you get. Just imagine that database of yours and all of those contacts as folks with whom you'd like to be better friends. Keep it in mind as you evaluate your engagement strategies and tactics and you'll be better at creating and cultivating the critical relationships for your organization.
Click here to learn about the 10 rules of engagement in more depth.
Groundwire's 10 Rules of Engagement, September 13, 2012, Groundwire, by Karen Uffelman
9 / 21 / 2012
Keeping Track of Your People Power: HR and Technology in the Nonprofit World
Whether your organization has just a few employees or a few thousand, its staff is its most valuable resource. To man...
Whether your organization has just a few employees or a few thousand, its staff is its most valuable resource. To manage that resource effectively, you need to track all sorts of information-from information about your employees' demographics to salary history to their annual performance goals. How do you make sure that data is safe, accurate and easily accessible?
Human resources management systems and human resources information systems-commonly abbreviated as HRMS or HRIS-can reduce administrative time and improve efficiency by helping your organization track and organize its human resources data.
This sounds great to most organizations, but few of those Idealware spoke with-including a number of experts-agreed on the specifics about what a good HR system should include. What areas would it cover, and what information would be tracked? What benefits would it provide, and would it be worth the investment?
Idealware also wanted to know at what point in an organization's lifecycle would these systems help free up enough staff time to make them worth the resources that would go into purchasing and implementing them and training employees to use them. To find out, Idealware talked to a number of nonprofit HR staffers and consultants specializing in the area to find out what they were using and what recommendations they might offer other organizations.
Read about the state of nonprofit human resources, human resources information systems, payroll, tracking employee data, recruiting and hiring, performance management and training here.
Keeping Track of Your People Power: HR and Technology in the Nonprofit World, September 2012, Idealware, by Elizabeth Pope
9 / 21 / 2012
Three Tips for Dealing with Corporate Partners
Earlier this week, Katya Andersen posted on four things one needs to know before pitching a corporate partner. ...
Earlier this week, Katya Andersen posted on four things one needs to know before pitching a corporate partner. She cited some interesting new research on how consumers feel about the products of companies that support charity. To summarize:
- A company that does good is perceived to have better products
- Consumer mindset dictates when "good" matters
- A socially responsible company trumps socially responsible product
- Consumers smell self-interest a mile away
So what are your takeaways?
- Companies benefit from working with nonprofits. Remember, you give companies a brand halo. And if the partnership is positioned well, people will perceive the company's products as superior. Assert and know your worth to the company - and have high standards for your partners.
- Companies do best when focusing on their firms' work to advance social good as a whole company, not necessarily how each product is a reflection of those policies. So encourage company-level support - it's better for their business - and for your organization because of the broader support.
- Companies don't want to appear self-serving with their corporate social responsibility, because that can backfire. So if your partners have genuinely advanced your cause and made a difference, help them tell that story. You'll be a good partner - and encourage more support over time.
9 / 14 / 2012
Attention Data Nerds! NTEN Change Journal: It's All About Data
The new issue of the NTEN Change Journal is all about data or rather how we all should love data. Whether you c...
The new issue of the NTEN Change Journal is all about data or rather how we all should love data. Whether you call it data-driven or data-informed, the issue has several excellent articles about how to use data for decision-making as well as lots of useful tips. It's a must read for data nerds.
As many of you know, Beth Kanter just finished writing a book with measurement guru, KD Paine, called "Measuring the Networked Nonprofit" that teaches nonprofits how to embrace NTENthe data and use it to improve decisions and get better results as a networked nonprofit. In the book, Kanter and Paine have a chapter about how one changes the organization's culture to one that uses data for decision-making. Paine has a fantastic article in this quarter's NTEN journal where she shares six steps on using data.
To learn more about NTEN's quarterly journal packed with informative articles, click here.
Attention Data Nerds! NTEN Change Journal: It's All About Data, September 5, 2012, Beth's Blog, by Beth Kanter
9 / 14 / 2012
5 Leadership Lessons You Won't Learn in B-School
Forget vision, passion, and other B-school platitudes. Here are the nitty-gritty details on what makes leaders great....
Forget vision, passion, and other B-school platitudes. Here are the nitty-gritty details on what makes leaders great. Most of what we know about leadership didn't come from business schools or conferences or seminars.
The best leadership lessons are learned the hard way:
- Data comes and goes, but feelings last forever.
- Great ideas are never found in presentations.
- The "volunteer penalty" kills the flow of great ideas.
- Sharing only the positive always results in a negative.
- Data is accurate, but people are right.
SometimeInc magazine logos a decision should be based on more than analysis, logic, and reasoning. No decision should ever be made in a vacuum, because a decision must eventually be carried out by people. Leadership should be data driven, but great leadership is often subjective and even messy. If your employees don't agree with you, ask why, but don't ask just so you can defend your position. Ask in order to learn. You know things your employees don't know, and they know things you don't know--until you listen to what they say.
5 Leadership Lessons You Won't Learn in B-School, August 30, 2012, Inc. by Jeff Haden
9 / 14 / 2012
The Social Media Policy Workbook for Jewish Organizations
Darim is pleased to announce the launch of their Social Media Policy Workbook for Jewish Organizations. The Workbook ...
Darim is pleased to announce the launch of their Social Media Policy Workbook for Jewish Organizations. The Workbook takes staff and lay leaders through step by step processes to explore and articulate your organization's policy and guidelines for social media. Each chapter includes explanations, case studies, and activity worksheets to advance your work thoughtfully and confidently.
- What Does A Social Media Policy Mean to You?
- Your Organization's Values in Social Media
- Social Media Roles: Who Does What?darim
- What Should You Say Online?
- Responding to Negative Comments
- Responding to Positive and Neutral Comments
- Privacy and Permissions
- Thinking Through Copyright and Attribution
- Drawing the Line Between Personal and Professional
- Sample Policy Language
The Workbook is made possible through the support and generosity of The Union for Reform Judaism (URJ), the AVI CHAI Foundation, See3 Communications, UJA Federation of New York, The Covenant Foundation, and Idealware. Download your free copy here.
9 / 14 / 2012
Survey of Board Practices in Developing Nonprofit Leaders
How can boards play a role in developing current and future nonprofit leaders? What practices are common today, and w...
How can boards play a role in developing current and future nonprofit leaders? What practices are common today, and what shoulboard sourced we expect from a highly effective board? The Bridgespan Group, in partnership with BoardSource, is conducting research to better understand the answers to these questions. As a first step The Bridegspan Group and BoardSource are surveying nonprofit board members, CEOs, and other senior leaders to understand their perspectives.
In this survey, you will be presented with a list of potential board practices. For each, you will be asked to rate your level of agreement with two statements:
- Boards should perform this practicebridgespan
- My board performs this practice
If you are a member of multiple boards, please reference the board that you are most engaged in as you complete the survey. The survey should take approximately 10-12 minutes to complete. If you have any questions or have difficulty completing the survey, please contact Bridgespan.
All data submitted in this survey will remain confidential, and individual responses will not be shared with any third party. Bridgespan will use this data in aggregate for research purposes only.
9 / 14 / 2012
Tweaking E-Mail for the Mobile Age
Ever since e-mail programs gave users the option of blocking images, many organizations have added short notes to the...
Ever since e-mail programs gave users the option of blocking images, many organizations have added short notes to the top of their messages-variations on "Trouble viewing this e-mail? Click here"-to direct recipients to online versions of the e-mails, images and all.
But while the notes make sense for people who read their e-mail on desktop computers, they can reduce the number of people who open the message when checking e-mail on mobile devices, says Holly Ross, executive director of the Nonprofit Technology Network.
She says that if someone is chchronicle philanthropyecking e-mail in a preview pane on a computer, they'll usually be able to see enough of the message to know what it's about.
"But on a mobile device, often all you see is a name, some part of the subject line, and then you see, 'E-mail not displaying correctly?' and that's about it," says Ms. Ross. "It doesn't give the mobile user very much information about whether or not they want to open that e-mail."
As the number of people who read e-mail on smartphones continues to jump, nonprofits should think about creating a version of their messages designed to be read on the devices' small screens, says Ms. Ross.
And, she says, they should be smart about how they order the text in the mobile version of the message. "Instead of saying, 'Do these images look funny?' " Ms. Ross says, say something that tells recipients what the message is about.
Tweaking E-Mail for the Mobile Age, September 5, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Nicole Wallace
9 / 7 / 2012
Becoming a Networked Nonprofit
In Beth Kanter's recent blog post in the Stanford Social Innovation Review, she defines a networked nonprofit as ...
In Beth Kanter's recent blog post in the Stanford Social Innovation Review, she defines a networked nonprofit as one that leads through active participation, openness, decentralized decision-making and collective action. The networked nonprofit finds the conversations happening within its network and takes part.
With the launch of our Connections Initiative, AJFCA is seeking to create opportunities for broader and deeper conversations to occur within various segments of our network. By generating more active participation, and helping to shape the conversation, this initiative will benefit our agencies' clients and the collective Jewish family service sector. The Connections Initiative has launched with initial conference calls for the CEO Council, Agency Board ajfca logo-resizedPresidents, the AJFCA/Repair Volunteer Initiative, the Addictions Practice Group, the Canadian Agency Group and the Legislative Affairs Task Force. Upcoming calls include the Domestic Violence Practice Group, Fund Development Professionals and second conference calls for some of the groups listed above. We will be expanding our initiative with additional groups and some webinars before the end of 2012. Please visit our calendar for a listing of all calls.
Ms. Kanter's goal is that all nonprofits connect more fluidly with their own networks. Her blog post goes on to introduce her forthcoming book, which aims to help nonprofits figure out what incremental steps they need to take to get to the next level of networked nonprofit practice. It is designed to help them understand and measure the nature of the change process as they move through it. To read more, click here.
9 / 7 / 2012
Tips for Writing frogloopAn Awesome Social Media And Communications Guide
The American Red Cross recently updated their Social Media and Online Communications Guide for their staff and it'...
The American Red Cross recently updated their Social Media and Online Communications Guide for their staff and it's packed with some great tips that any organization can adapt. Check out some of their great suggestions below.
Be a Good Social and Mobile Citizen
BE ACCURATE: "Your network depends on you to tell the truth. Have fun, but make sure any news you report has been verified. If you're retweeting, sharing, or otherwise linking to someone else's content, give him/her credit," said the Red Cross.
BE RELEVANT: "Post content that invites responses - then stay engaged. Find others who have shared interests, cite them and ask them questions," said the Red Cross.
BE CONSIDERATE: "Encourage healthy debate but don't inflame others," said the Red Cross.
BE TRANSPARENT: "If you make a mistake, admit it. Be upfront and be quick with your correction," said the Red Cross.
BE HUMAN: "The social web is like a dinner party. Be yourself, but with good manners," said the Red Cross.
Balancing Your Professional and Personal Life
As social media becomes increasingly part of our daily lives professionally and personally, it can be a challenge to navigate these new waters. Check out the chart blogger Allison Fine created that discusses the Old Professional (pre social media) and the New Professional (in the age of social media).
Tips for Writing An Awesome Social Media And Communications Guide, August 18, 2012, frogloop, by Allyson Kapin
9 / 7 / 2012
It's a Brain Thing
Tell little stories all over the place. The human mind laps that stuff up. We're in a Golden Age for donor c...
Tell little stories all over the place. The human mind laps that stuff up.
We're in a Golden Age for donor communications, thanks to advances in psychology and neuroscience. Many debates are over. We've never had more information to base our ideas, offers, and words on.
We now know for sure why a bunch of hoary direct mail triggers, like flattery and fear, actually work so reliably. Those emotional triggers have now been laboratory tested. We've watched the brain act in real time through MRIs. We know that flattery produces dopamine and a sense of trust for the flatterer. We know that fear tickles the amygdala, the earliest evolutionary brain bud.
We now know for sure that sad images definitely out-raise happy images, in a head to head comparison of response. That was figured out in the psychology lab. So those people who preach, "We don't want to go negative with our donors...."? They are simply wrong. Science says so.
And here's Tom's favorite thing that science says: a taste for narrative is baked into the human brain. Again, dopamine. We take pleasure in stories. Great pleasure. Stories feel good in our brains.
Everything should tell a story: every picture, every caption, every offer, every headline, every deck, every pull quote, every testimonial and, of course, every article (but don't depend on them: very few people ever read past the first or second paragraph of an article, unless it's absolutely fascinating and professionally written).
It's a Brain Thing, August 30, 2012, Love Thy Reader, by Tom Ahern
9 / 7 / 2012
Essential Learning to Serve as the Approved Exclusive Online Training Partner for COA
Essential Learning and the Council on Accreditation Partner to Help Human Service Agencies Prepare for a Successful A...
Essential Learning and the Council on Accreditation Partner to Help Human Service Agencies Prepare for a Successful Accreditation Process
Essential Learning, the leading provider of e-learning solutions to the behavioral health and human service industries, and theessential learning Council on Accreditation (COA), an international accrediting body of community-based social and behavioral healthcare services, have formed a partnership to develop a series of online courses designed to assist organizations throughout the accreditation process.
As a result of the partnership:
- Essential Learning will develop a series of self-paced, online courses which will be made available through COA
- COA will review and approve Essential Learning's existing crosswalk of their online content to COA's accreditation standards
- Essential Learning will serve as the approved exclusive online training partner for COA
Combined, these initiatives will help meet COA's aim to provide superior training and support tools to accredited, in-process and prospective organizations.
In the coming weeks Essential Learning will be announcing more information about the partnership, including release dates of COA courses.
Learn more about the hundreds of courses Essential Learning already offers. Our ever expanding library contains thousands of hours of accredited courses that include compliance, clinical and workforce development topics.
8 / 31 / 2012
Why It's Better for the Nonprofit When Consultants Work Together
Nonprofit organizations often engage more than one consultant at the same time and when this is the case, there can b...
Nonprofit organizations often engage more than one consultant at the same time and when this is the case, there can be an added value to their working with each other instead of separately. It is not only a matter of coordinating their effoejewish philanthropyrts to work within the framework of the organization's objectives, but rather to enable them to share their understanding of the challenges facing the agency. When consultants are encouraged to establish a strong collegial relationship it benefits them individually and strengthens their efforts on behalf of the organization.
Read the entire article to learn about the benefits of nonprofit consultants working together.
Why It's Better for the Nonprofit When Consultants Work Together, August 29, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
8 / 31 / 2012
The KIDS COUNT Infographic Challenge
Find your story in the Data Center. Create an awesome infographic. Win cool stuff. The KIDS COUNT Infographic Ch...
Find your story in the Data Center. Create an awesome infographic. Win cool stuff.
The KIDS COUNT Infographic Challenge is an online crowd-sourced competition for young people and adults to use KIDS COUNT data to illustrate the story of America's children.
The Challenge is simple: tap into the powerful combination of art and data to educate, inform and engage. Great data and a fresh perspective can change how we think and inspire us to find new solutions to problems we face.
- Visit the KIDS COUNT Data Center and find data that speaks to you.
- Design an infographic or visual image using that data. (Need help? Check out visual.ly.)
- Upload it to the Challenge platform and activate your social networks to get your friends to vote for your entry when the voting period opens.
Show your creative sparks and win!
8 / 31 / 2012
Friend-to-Friend Fundraising Works- So Why Aren't You Doing It?
Andrea Berry, Idealware's Director of Development is a pretty passionate advocate of nonprofits trying Friend-to-...
Andrea Berry, Idealware's Director of Development is a pretty passionate advocate of nonprofits trying Friend-to-Friend or Social Fundraising techniques for their organizations. Having come out of the health fundraising world, she's seen the power of having supporters fundraising on your behalf. Mobilizing an army of passionate advocates for your organization can tap into thousands of dollars in unseen funds and link your organization to hundreds--if not thousands--of new supporters. So why does this technique seem to be the domain of heath organizations alone?
- Is it the fear of the work of putting on a massive event like a Walk-a-thon or Dance-off?
- Is it lack of confidence in your supporters?
- Is it lack of knowledge about how to motivate your supporters?
Idealware used to offer a seminar on "Getting Started with Distributed Fundraising," but no one ever took the class. Thinking it was due to a terrible name, they changed the title and tried again. Enter "Turning Your Supporters Into Fundraisers," but still no takers. Feeling very strongly that nonprofits should know about this approach, Idealware decided to offer the session for free, and it had the lowest registration rate for any of the 11 free seminars they've offered in 2011.
So what is going on? Why don't you care? Because honestly, you should. This method works.
Click here for answers to the bold questions above.
Friend-to-Friend Fundraising Works- So Why Aren't You Doing It? August 22, 2012, Idealware, by Andrea Berry
8 / 24 / 2012
Wealthiest Don't Rate High on Giving Measure
Dividing the country into red states and blue states shows far more than who will likely vote for Mitt Romney or Bara...
Dividing the country into red states and blue states shows far more than who will likely vote for Mitt Romney or Barack Obama in the next presidential election. It's also one of several ways to gauge generosity, according to a Chronicle study that charts giving patterns in every city, state, and ZIP code.
People who live in red states are more likely to give generously to charities than those in bluechronicle philanthropy states.
The regional differences in giving are stark: In states like Utah and Mississippi, the typical household gives more than 7 percent of its income to charity after taxes, housing, food, and other living expenses, while the average household in Massachusetts and three other New England states gives less than 3 percent.
The same holds for the nation's 50 biggest metropolitan areas. The Chronicle found that residents of Salt Lake City, Memphis, and Birmingham, Ala., typically give at least 7 percent of their discretionary income to charity, while those in Boston and Providence average less than 3 percent.
To read the entire article, click here.
Wealthiest Don't Rate High on Giving Measure, August 19, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Ben Gose
8 / 24 / 2012
How Crowdsourcing Can Help Your Nonprofit
Crowdsourcing can help you harness the crowd to increase awareness, cultivate new volunteers, gather information and ...
Crowdsourcing can help you harness the crowd to increase awareness, cultivate new volunteers, gather information and even get work done-all for a minimal investment. How can you put it to work for you?
Since the earliest days of the internet, people have used it to solicit and organize groups of people to participate in projects in small ways. Called crowdsourcing, this process can be done by a number of ways, and for a number of goals. In an early example of the practice, nonprofits would post questions to a Usenet discussion board to seek answers from the community-for instance, asking how to write a particular policy, or for recommendations about recognizing and rewarding volunteers. That "open call" approach is what distinguishes crowdsourcing from outsourcing, in which you'd send a task to a specific person or organization for help.
Crowdsourcing can be done at an organizational or individual level, and nonprofits have used it for everything from marketing and fundraising to volunteerism and activism. It's a great way to enlist help from a wider community knowledgebase, and to engage people in your work.
In the last few years, the rise of social media and new technologies made it easier to reach and engage a broader audience. But how can your organization harness the power of the crowd to help achieve your mission? Idealware asked nonprofit experts and professionals for crowdsourcing best practices and techniques that have worked for them. Find best practices and techniques here.
8 / 17 / 2012
Fantasizing Your Way to a Successful Organization
A recent satirical report in the online publication, The Onion, suggests that "the single act of pretending one&...
A recent satirical report in the online publication, The Onion, suggests that "the single act of pretending one's life is not in complete shambles ... works. 'Even when everything is coming apart at the seams and disaster is almost certainly imminent, putting up a good front for friends and loved ones makes everything better.'" While the Onion's report was written (it appears) tongue and cheek, its premise is grounded in the works of social commentators like Malcolm Gladwell and Norman Cousins who suggest that putting up a positive front leads to happiness and success. Although fantasizing about a better life might work well for individuals, it is not an effective strategy for organizations.
Professional fundraisers will attest (even when doing the opposite) that appeals based on positive messaging of what can be done, or is being done, are usually more successful and effective than the "woe is us approach." Although such an approach is logical in the fundraising arena, when it migrates to governance, well, "Houston, we have a problem".
Regrettably, far too organizations practice "strategy by pretend" in order to not upset volunteers, donors and most importantly, board members. That is ... until it is too late. While such positivism is critical to the success of effective branding and fundraising, many organizations have found themselves in deep financial and operational trouble because their leadership wore rose colored glasses. Rather than practicing organizational oversight, they believed their own messaging, and pretended that everything was okay - even when it wasn't. Any volunteer or professional who toils in this sector of the world can cite a litany of organizations who match this description.
Read the entire article here to learn about successful nonprofit and faith based organizations organizing around the juxtaposition of two basic premises-hope and reality.
Fantasizing Your Way to a Successful Organization, August 14, 2012, eJP, by Lou Feldstein
8 / 17 / 2012
Four Steps to Developing Your Future Leaders
Leadership is learned primarily by doing, with reinforcement from informal coaching and formal training. This article...
Leadership is learned primarily by doing, with reinforcement from informal coaching and formal training. This article, adapted from Chapter 3 of Plan A: How Successful Nonprofits Develop Their Future Leaders, distills this concept into the 70-20-10 model that a growing number of corporations and nonprofits are using to develop the potential leaders identified in their Plan As - their road maps to developing future leaders in their organizations. As its name suggests, the model calls for 70 percent on-the-job training, supplemented with 20 percent coaching and mentoring, and 10 percent formal training. (Find a more detailed discussion of the model in "The 70-20-10 Model.")
Many nonprofits recognize the impact of on-the-job learning and offer their employees challenging assignments. In fact, 65 percent of respondents to Bridgespan's diagnostic survey on leadership development agree or strongly agree that their organizations "have sufficient quality opportunities for employees to gain new leadership skills via on-the-job opportunities." But it's not clear that organizations and their employees are making the most of those opportunities. Only about 30 percent of respondents agree or strongly agree that "employees with the potential to move into leadership roles have development plans in place that identify areas for development and sources of development support." These responses suggest that many nonprofits need a more systematic approach to leadership development, one tied to existing HR and performance management processes.
Click here to read more and follow the steps outlined to weave leadership development into your organization's everyday activities using the 70-20-10 model.
Four Steps to Developing Your Future Leaders, August 15, 2012, Bridgespan
8 / 17 / 2012
5 Hard Questions Every Nonprofit Should Ask
Nell Edgington is a huge believer in questions. Sometimes asking good, hard questions is the only way to get to the b...
Nell Edgington is a huge believer in questions. Sometimes asking good, hard questions is the only way to get to the bottom of ssocial velocityomething, to analyze potential options, to find the right path. So too in the nonprofit sector hard questions can play a pivotal role. It is critically important that we move away from an unwritten rule that "charities" are doing good things that shouldn't be questioned, to a place where nonprofits are continually asking themselves whether they are making most effective use of resources and providing real solutions. These are the 5 questions nonprofits should be asking themselves:
- Do we know if we are accomplishing anything?
- Are we adapting to our external environment?
- Is our board helping or hurting?
- Do we really need that new building?
- Are we using money as a tool?
To move forward, the nonprofit sector needs to do away with safe, routine conversations and start asking some hard questions. Indeed questions are sometimes the only route to open up possibilities, try new approaches and find a better way.
Read the answers to each question in depth here.
5 Hard Questions Every Nonprofit Should Ask, August 14, 2012, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
8 / 17 / 2012
Stop Documenting. Start Communicating.
Non-profits love 'documentation'. It's a love story of demand and supply. The demand originally started w...
Non-profits love 'documentation'. It's a love story of demand and supply. The demand originally started with donors asking for details of how their money was spent. And since non-profits work in tough areas where decades of work make up small yet significant achievements, they needed to come up with an answer. Hence they supplied details of wells dug, number of people employed in the digging of wells, people from the community who benefited from the water, and so on.
The demand by the donor was legitimate. "How has my money made a difference?" The response from the non-profit was equally legitimate. "This is how our work has changed lives: so many people, so many wells, etc."
But somewhere along the line, non-profits fell in love with the business - or rather the busy-ness - of documentation. To understand this, let's consider an example. We all prioritize the information we give out, according to what the listener is interested in. But many non-profits have lost the ability to separate the wheat from the chaff. And somewhere, the good stories, achievements and testimonials are buried under the rubble of documentation.
Click here to read more about avoiding your message losing its way in the morass of documentation.
Stop Documenting. Start Communicating. July 24, 2012, No Small Change
8 / 17 / 2012
Have You Seen the New Klout.com
Klout launchedsocial fresh a preview of their new site refresh today to a few select users. One of the big changes is...
Klout launchedsocial fresh a preview of their new site refresh today to a few select users. One of the big changes is that the new Klout pulls in even more data to create it's influence scores. Previously Klout pulled in less than 100 metrics to create their scores. It now utilizes over 400+ data sources. That is over 4 times as much data.
People have always had the power to influence others, and that power is being democratized with new social media tools. Klout's mission is to provide insights into everyone's influence. Klout measures your influence based on your ability to drive action in social networks. Klout processes this data on a daily basis to give you an updated Klout Score each morning. Below are a few of the actions used to measure influence:
- Facebook: Mentions, Likes, Comments, Subscribers, Wall Posts, Friends
- Twitter: Retweets, Mentions, List Memberships, Followers, Replies
- Google+: Comments, Reshares, +1
- LinkedIn: Title, Connections, Recommenders, Comments
It's great to have lots of connections but what really matters is how people engage with the content you create. Klout believes it's better to have a small and engaged audience than a large network that doesn't act upon your content. Klout wants to help you understand your influence wherever it may exist. They also understand given the number of different networks out there that it is nearly impossible for any person to be consistently effective across every network.
Have You Seen the New Klout.com, August 14, 2012, SocialFresh.com, by Jason Keath
8 / 17 / 2012
Idealware's Upcoming Online Training
All of Idealware's on-demand recordings are 65% off for the month of August, so now's the time to catch up on...
All of Idealware's on-demand recordings are 65% off for the month of August, so now's the time to catch up on what you've missed. Just use the discount code CAMP812 and get any recorded seminar for only $9.
But wait, there's more! Idealware also has live seminars coming up this month. Find seminars here.
Idealware seminars are designed to give you the tactical advice you need to make smart software decisions. You can take one of Idealware's live online seminars, which are capped at 25 participants so you'll have lots of opportunity to ask questions and get the information you need. All you need is an internet connection and a phone line to participate in these 90-minute workshops. For an in-depth lesson, check out Idealware's online courses. These intense, five and six part trainings are offered in partnership with state associations across the country. Or check out Idealware's library of 17 (and growing) recorded seminars ready to go, whenever you need them.
8 / 10 / 2012
United States of Aging
First United States of Aging Survey Shows Older Adults Optimistic but Uncertain About Future NCOA, UnitedHealthcare...
First United States of Aging Survey Shows Older Adults Optimistic but Uncertain About Future
NCOA, UnitedHealthcare, and USA TODAY surveyed 2,250 U.S. adults aged 60 or older for the inaugural United States of Aging Survey to examine seniors' outlook and preparedness for aging, and their community's ability to meet their needs as they age.
The results? Most older Americans feel their best years are still to come, but not all are prepared for the challenges of aging.
- Seniors and baby boomers expect their lives to improve as they grow older.
- A significant minority of respondents feel less secure: about one in four report trouble with current monthly living expenses; one-third say they will not be able to afford future long-term care services; and 72% of those who make less than $30,000 per year live with a chronic health condition.
- Perceptions of community services for older Americans vary; boomers are less confident than older respondents that their community will provide the services they need to maintain health and independence.
8 / 10 / 2012
As the Face of Philanthropy Changes, So Should the Faces that Promote It
Call it "Development for a New Millennium:" with the rise of online giving, the popularity of strategic cha...
Call it "Development for a New Millennium:" with the rise of online giving, the popularity of strategic charitable investments, and untold changes in not just how but where people are giving (as evidenced by the recent GivingUSA report on giving in 2011), the need for strong professional leadership, in the form of a talented Development Director to ensure effective fundraising efforts within a nonprofit organization, is more important than ever.
The undeniable importance of the individual donor remains paramount, and all too often, the organizational representaejewish philanthropytive that donors interact with most at a nonprofit is the Development Director. In concert with the Executive Director, the leader of the development department quite often serves as the "face" of the organization, representing its programs and cultivating its supporters.
A strong Development Director must partner with, educate, and motivate an organization's Executive Staff, and empower the Executive Director to inspire the Board of Directors as well as work hand-in-hand with campaign leadership and/or consultants for specific campaigns. She/he must be detail-oriented, work well on a team, and understand a variety of fundraising tasks, including gift acquisition, stewardship of donors, communication strategy, corporate giving, and both the writing and monitoring of foundation grants and government contracts.
Read the entire article here to learn about five new essential qualities of the modern-day Development Director.
As the Face of Philanthropy Changes, So Should the Faces that Promote It, August 5, 2012, eJP, by Robert I. Evans & Avrum D. Lapin, EHL Consulting
8 / 10 / 2012
Focus on Finances and Feedback: Lessons From a Social-Venture Boot Camp
No matter how much nonprofits try to incorporate the world of finance into their work, it's rare that venture cap...
No matter how much nonprofits try to incorporate the world of finance into their work, it's rare that venture capitalists, grant makers and social entrepreneurs meet together to discuss their work.
That's why the Unreasonable Institute, a three-year-old nonprofit, brought 75 investors and grant makers to Boulder, CO, this summer to spend two days with social entrepreneurs attending a six-week boot camp on getting an enterprise off the ground.
As Scott Henderson participated in the event and spoke with foundation grant makers and traditional investors, he explored what lessons nonprofits and other social-impact start-ups could learn from this experience. Among them:
Value financial expertise.
- Be open to feedback.
- Explain your project clearly and concisely.
- Find unlikely partners.
Click here to read the entire article and learn about the lessons above in more detail.
Focus on Finances and Feedback, August 6, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Scott Henderson
8 / 10 / 2012
The Best Darn Annual Report I've Seen this Year
Lately, Katya has been blogging on the concept of making the donor the hero of your story. The center of your o...
Lately, Katya has been blogging on the concept of making the donor the hero of your story. The center of your outreach. The star of your show.
She's received several requests for examples of this concept in action. Below is her favorite, from blog reader Julie Burch of the Austin Children's Shelter. View the annual report here.
The report does three things brilliantly:
- It gives the donors the credit and puts them at the center of the report.
- It is full of great stories.
- It has a deft way of telling a story and using powerful imagery without violating privacy
8 / 10 / 2012
Ventureneer's One-Stop Social Media Resource
Social Media for Nonprofits, Social Enterprises, Socially Responsible Companies Social media for nonprofits, social...
Social Media for Nonprofits, Social Enterprises, Socially Responsible Companies
Social media for nonprofits, social enterprises and socially responsible companies aren't optional anymore. They are an integral part of outreach, advocacy, fundraising, and client services and likely to become more so as technology advances. But nonprofits in particular are not getting all they can from social media, as discovered in our Ventureneer's Summer 2010 Survey, Nonprofits and Social Media: It Ain't Optional, of nonprofit social media use.
To that end, Ventureneer has compiled this one-stop, central resource of values-driven business -- socially responsible company, social enterprise and nonprofit -- social media best practices, research, learning opportunities, and conversations.
Be sure to check out 25 Best Social Media for Social Good Blogs and Putting the Power of LinkedIn to Use for Your Nonprofits pages.
8 / 10 / 2012
The Importance of 'Noticing'
Yes! The qualitative data matter. What our participants think and feel matter. And its high time we started figuring ...
Yes! The qualitative data matter. What our participants think and feel matter. And its high time we started figuring out how to learn what they think and feel; what the qualitative results are of our programs.
For the past three years, Anna Marx, a Jewish organizational consultant that has been working with The Jewish Education Project and the Experiment in Congregational Education has been working with New York congregations in the Coalition of Innovating Congregations. As part of this work, teachers in part-time Jewish learning programs have been experimenting with ways to assess learning. Don't think assessment like in public schools - no fill-in-the-bubble-tests here. This assessment is about setting goals for learners that speak to their whole selves, not just the brain. We call it "Noticing" because it's about observing, witnessing growth in our learners as they travel their own journeys.
And the more Anna is a part of this work, the more she sees the possibilities for this whole-person assessment to translate to so many other kinds of programs in the Jewish community.
Click here to see what it looks like and read the remainder of the article.
The Importance of 'Noticing', August 9, 2012, eJP, by Anna Marx
8 / 3 / 2012
Voices from the Sector: The Idealist.org Nonprofit Organization Report
Idealist approached the thousands of organizations on Idealist to ask them how they're doing, find out what they ...
Idealist approached the thousands of organizations on Idealist to ask them how they're doing, find out what they anticipate in the coming year, and learn more about their human resources practices. More than 1,000 organizations responded to the idealist-version 2Idealist survey. Overall, it was found that there is optimism in the nonprofit sector, which continues to rise, though many organizations still remain cautious in some areas. While funding has increased for many groups this year, some still sense uncertainty in the longer term. And organizations are facing a wide range of challenges in the areas of hiring, compensation, and staff development-and even in how to handle growth.
In 2012 Idealist also included data collected from more than 3,000 active job seekers in their Nonprofit Organization Report, who responded to their own survey. By assessing their experiences and comparing them with organizations' hiring practices and expectations, Idealist can help provide some insight into the challenges that face nonprofits so we can all continue to strengthen our work.
Click here to view the findings of the 2012 survey.
8 / 3 / 2012
Use Social Media to Reel in Big Fish Donors
Many nonprofits already use social media, including mobile, to raise money among individual donors. Small donations a...
Many nonprofits already use social media, including mobile, to raise money among individual donors. Small donations add up, as Mark Hanis found. His first Facebook campaign raised $250,000 in 2005 for Genocide Intervention Network, now known as http://endgenocide.org/.
But few nonprofits use social media to build relationship with potential Big Fish donors. Yup, you can target and build these important relationships by engaging with them through LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. The relationship starts online, but the "ask" happens offline, perhaps on the phone, but most likely face-to-face.
Building these relationships is hard work but the benefits are enormous. Effective social media outreach takes at least 25 hours of staff time per week, according to the Ditch Digital Dabbling research report. Hanis has tips for those willing to undertake the task, based on his experience as head of the Genocide Intervention Network:
- Identify prospects using the 990s of nonprofits with a mission similar to yours.
- Research which social media these major donors are using.
- Learn their areas of interest and how engaged they are in your cause.
- Engage on an ongoing basis.
- Coordinate all internal efforts.
- Reach out.
Read about Hanis' tips in more detail here.
Note from Beth: We know that social media can bring in the small dollar donors, but what about larger gifts? This is a question that was answered in a study from 2009 and the answer is yes. Find out how one successful nonprofit leader does it.
8 / 3 / 2012
The Simple Secret to Building Community
Earlier this month, Chris Brogan, President of Human Business Works wrote a post about Audience, Access, and Advertis...
Earlier this month, Chris Brogan, President of Human Business Works wrote a post about Audience, Access, and Advertising on his blog.
He pointed out that the first two, Audience and Access, were two dials on the new machine of building your business, and that advertising was no longer the first and primary effective tool for this for most of us.
Let's dig just a bit deeper on how to go about building value for an audience and work on how providing access to your customers and prospects helps business.
Audience and It's Secret Better Half
To gain attention for whatever you seek to accomplish, you might have the goal to build an audience.
When we talk about audience, they might gather for you in many ways. You might be growing an email newsletter, or you might have a blog, or maybe you have a radio show, or a TV show. You want to attract people to whatever it is you have to say, so that you can then encourage them, educate them, convince them, sell to them, whatever that goal might be.
How do you get them there?
Audience building is one part self-promotion, one part creating useful and/or entertaining content (and we can interpret this one very widely), one part repetition (for getting an audience together once is rarely a win for anyone), and then we come to the parts that aren't as often a guarantee.
Click here to read about interaction, inclusion, and empowerment as well as the entire article.
8 / 3 / 2012
Growing Individual Gifts: An Analytic Approach to Data Driven Success
A WealthEngine Institute Workbook This workbook will take readers step-by-step through the strategies needed for su...
A WealthEngine Institute Workbook
This workbook will take readers step-by-step through the strategies needed for success and growth in individual giving, offering guidance from assessing and planning, through building strategies and measuring success. An accompanying toolkit shares electronic tools and resources available for download, to further enable readers to grow individual gifts at their organizations.
Is your agency interested in WealthEngine? AJFCA has been looking into a group subscription. Please email Megan if you are interested in WeathEngine's services.
WealthEngine provides clients in the United States with solutions that provide a complete picture of the people they already know, and tools to find new people they would like to get to know. We work with nonprofits, hospitals, institutions of higher education, political campaigns and advocacy groups of all sizes as well as luxury organizations and financial services firms to help them effectively identify individuals with the net worth, income, lifestyle and affinity to become their next top donor or customer.
7 / 27 / 2012
Reinventing the Nonprofit Capital Campaign
In a previous article on About.com, Nell Edgington discussed the idea of capacity capital, an incredibly exciting new...
In a previous article on About.com, Nell Edgington discussed the idea of capacity capital, an incredibly exciting new funding vehicle for nonprofit organizations. Capacity capital is the money that nonprofits so desperately need to build strong, effective, sustainable organizations that can create more social change. It is a one-time investment of money to add new technology, an evaluation system, a new revenue function-ultimately money to grow or strengthen the organizatisocial velocityon. And it is infinitely more effective at achieving social impact than a traditional bricks and mortar capital campaign.
There are many perceived benefits to a bricks and mortar capital campaign. They can be a vehicle for asking for bigger gifts, a way to get in front of the community and be "noticed," and a method for energizing the board and giving them something to do.
Click here to read about the often huge downsides to these campaigns as well as raising money through a capacity capital campaign, for the things a nonprofit really needs to create more social change.
7 / 27 / 2012
A Few Good Blogging Tools
Your organization's blog is a place to show a little personality, share resources, highlight your expertise, and ...
Your organization's blog is a place to show a little personality, share resources, highlight your expertise, and engage your constituents. What are the best tools for creating and hosting a blog?
Why do we blog? Personal reasons aside, blogs are particularly useful for organizations as a way to publicize expertise on a topic in your issue area, to educate constituents, promote your work, or share your story from behind-the-scenes. By making your organization easier to find through search engines, a blog is also helpful for promoting your website and online information.
Blogs are a way for nonprofits to show a little personality, too. By having multiple authors-staff members, volunteers or even friends of the organization-you can show a diverse set of perspectives and experiences, adding depth to your online presence. This also provides opportunities for supporters and constituents to share their stories-for example, you could ask a volunteer to write about their experience working with your organization on an important or emotional project.
If you use your blog to recognize the efforts of your supporters or highlight what makes your organization's mission and work special, you can encourage more people to volunteer, donate, or support you in other ways.
There are many good reasons for nonprofits to keep a blog. Click here to learn about a few good tools to facilitate your blogging.
7 / 27 / 2012
Gripping Graphics: 2011 VolunteerMatch Annual Report
Annual reports present important information for board members and the community, but often lack imagination. Here is...
Annual reports present important information for board members and the community, but often lack imagination. Here is a neat and engaging annual report from VolunteerMatch that is presented as an infographic!
What does the web's largest volunteer engagement network look like? This yvolunteermatch annual report infographicear VolunteerMatch created an infographic to explore its scope, vitality and impact.
The data tell a very human story... about engagement, participation and generosity. Take a closer look and you will see where volunteers are spending their time, what they are interested in and where they are coming from.
In 2011 you will see that the network helped VolunteerMatch nonprofit members attract $640 million worth of volunteer service on a budget of just under $4.5 million, or $145 dollars in social value for every $1 spent.
Click on this link to view the entire report.
7 / 27 / 2012
Out of the Closet, Into the Cloud: Case Studies of Hosted IT Infrastructure (An Overview of a Research Project)
[Editor's note: The following is an article written by Laura Quinn, Idealware, based on research conducted for NT...
[Editor's note: The following is an article written by Laura Quinn, Idealware, based on research conducted for NTEN regarding the impact, characteristics, and considerations of cloud options for nonprofit organizations' IT infrastructures. You can read the individual case studies in addition to this article, which summarizes findings from the case studies.]
There's a lot of buzz about the Cloud being the future of data storage and processing, and more and more Cloud-based options available to users every day, but we wondered to what extent organizations were effectively replacing traditional IT functions and servers with Cloud solutions. Is nonprofit technology moving out of the data closet and into the Cloud?
NTEN set out to find good examples of organizations that had taken staff email, file servers, phone services and other functions that would traditionally be housed onsite and replaced them with applications accessed over the Internet, or with "Cloud applications" like Google Apps, online file sharing or data backup services. To that end, NTEN posted an email to nonprofit technology discussion lists looking for nonprofits willing to share their stories, and contacted a few participants from an NTEN summit on Cloud technologies earlier this year.
From all the responses, 10 diverse organizations were chosen for case studies. Click here to read what types of cloud services nonprofits are successfully using, outsourcing server maintenance and issues, saving time and money, and security in the cloud.
7 / 27 / 2012
Top Online Marketing Mistakes - and How to Avoid Them
Prestige Marketing emailed Katya this nifty infographic detailing the top 5 marketing mistakes. Katya wrote, "If...
Prestige Marketing emailed Katya this nifty infographic detailing the top 5 marketing mistakes. Katya wrote, "If I had to apply this to nonprofits, I'd modify this a bit. Our mistake is rarely too much advertising instead of content marketing - because we can't afford ads!"
Here are the top nonprofit variations of these errors:
- Me-me messaging: The corollary of too much advertising on social media with for-profits is too much promotional content on social media. Does your content read like an ad?
- Lackluster content: Not enough new, interesting stories about the difference your work makes in the world.
- No personality: Talking like an organization instead of a person working for your cause.
- No action: Failing to provide simple, clear and easy calls to action.
- Writing off email: It's still powerful and important. Are you efforts reflecting that?
7 / 27 / 2012
Executive Education: The Time for Action is Now
Thanks to David Edell for jumpstarting the conversation about what is possible regarding executive education for the ...
Thanks to David Edell for jumpstarting the conversation about what is possible regarding executive education for the Jewish nonprofit field. Lyn Light Geller, executive director of the department of educational resources and organizational development for UJA-Federation of New York agrees that the time for action is now.
In New York, UJA-Federation's Wiener Educational Center has been involved in executive education and professional development for many years and has learned some lessons from their current models of professional and executive education for the Jewish not-for-profit sector that may be more broadly applicable.
Their mission - to care for those in need, inspire a passion for Jewish life and learning, and to strengthen the Jewish people, is foundational to all that we do. We understand that our mission cannot be accomplished without skilled and passionate professional leaders who are positioned to lead us to the next phase of Jewish communal life. And, UJA-Federation's NY has developed a multi-tiered program to recruit, educate and retain our professional leadership. Their strategy includes:
- Widening Doors.
- Emerging Professional Leadership.
- Strengthening the Middle.
- Executive Level Education.
- Learning At All Levels.
There are national and international models to learn from as well. There is indeed some action. What is needed is more conversation between those who talk and those who act; more dialogue between those who act; the development of a national strategy to be implemented on both local and national levels, and the support of our leadership, both professional and lay, to give this the priority that it deserves.
Click here to learn more about the observations UJF-Federation of NY has made regarding their professional development programs for the Jewish nonprofit sector.
7 / 20 / 2012
Report on CEO Transitions Just Released
AJFCA and many of our members participated in a survey of CEOs of Jewish organizations conducted last year. The...
AJFCA and many of our members participated in a survey of CEOs of Jewish organizations conducted last year. The survey results have been published in Effective CEO Transitioning/Leadership Sustainability in North American Jewish Nonprofit Organizations by Dr. Steven Noble. The report highlights the challenges organizations and their leadership face in effective succession planning and sustainability. Included are ten recommendations that address the underlying reasons for the immediate challenges, as well as suggested solutions. AJFCA will be continuing to work with Dr. Noble as he does further work in this area.
7 / 20 / 2012
Getting to Aha! The Nonprofit Marketer's Top Challenge
Poor Messages Hold You Back from the Change You Seek, but Survey Findings Signal Huge Opportunity to Boost Connection...
Poor Messages Hold You Back from the Change You Seek, but Survey Findings Signal Huge Opportunity to Boost Connection and Action
The overwhelming response to GettingAttention.org's recent Nonprofit Messages Survey highlights how vital it is for an organization's messages to connect quickly and strongly with the people whose help is wanted--and how rare that is today.
The way your nonprofit talks about its work, results and ultimate impact is a core competency critical to your success. Relevance is the heart of memorable, motivating messages--Aha! messages. If your messages are irrelevant (more than 7 of 10 nonprofits describe their messages as off target), your organization will fail to motivate the actions you need to move your mission forward-to give, volunteer, join or advocate.
The great news is that fixing the problem is highly do-able and promises vastly greater success in advancing your mission than you're experiencing now. It's incumbent upon executive directors, board members and marketing and fundraising leaders to lead the charge to make your messages relevant.
The survey findings can be found here.
Nancy E. Schwartz helps nonprofits succeed through effective marketing. Nancy and her team provide marketing planning and implementation services to nonprofit organizations and foundations nationwide. She is the publisher of the Getting Attention e-update and blog. For more nonprofit marketing guidance like this, subscribe to her e-update.
Getting to Aha! The Nonprofit Marketer's Top Challenge, June 21, 2012, GettingAttention.org, by Nancy Schwartz
7 / 20 / 2012
10 Facebook Photo Ideas Your Fans Will Love
Fear not, this is not another Facebook Timeline cover-photo tutorial. While the cover photo feature is certainly cool...
Fear not, this is not another Facebook Timeline cover-photo tutorial. While the cover photo feature is certainly cool and companies are doing very clever things with it, it's important to remember the cover photo just sits on your page. Most people will never return to your page once they "like" it. They most likely interact with your page from their news feeds, and may never even see your beautifully designed Facebook page.
What people do have the chance to see every day are the photos you post on your page. The more people like, share and comment on your photos, the better the chance your photos will appear in the news feed. This will drive more people to like, share and comment on them. In other words, photos matter a lot on Facebook. Start including more photos in your updates, and there's a good chance your engagement will soar. Below are 10 ideas for how pages can and should use photos on Facebook. Don't fret if you're not in the marketing industry. Any business can use these ideas.
1. Post images from blog posts.
2. Add images to announcements. pr daily
3. Show off your office.
4. Highlight your team.
5. Show life outside of work.
6. Create a meme.
7. Post comics.
8. Illustrate survey results.
9. Illustrate statistics.
10. Take screen shots.
Use the ideas above to better engage your audience and stand out in the news feed. Make sure the photos you post have a purpose and relate to your brand and/or industry. Aim to share photos that teach, entertain, inform or give an insider look at your company. Read about ideas for how pages can and should use photos on Facebook in more detail here.
10 Facebook Photo Ideas Your Fans Will Love, July 16, 2012, PR Daily, by Kerry Jones
7 / 20 / 2012
Plan A: How Successful Nonprofits Develop Their Future Leaders
While resource constraints are one challenge most nonprofits face, the biggest obstacle to improved leadership develo...
While resource constraints are one challenge most nonprofits face, the biggest obstacle to improved leadership development may be the behavior of leaders. Many nonprofit leaders (including nonprofit boards) confront the question of leadership development only when faced with a succession crisis. And by then it may be too late.
A change of thinking is needed to overcome this obstacle. Bridgespan has created Plan A: How Successful Nonprofits Develop Their Future Leaders as a guide to help nonprofits think differently about leadership development.
Plan A treats leadership development not as an ad hoc response to crisis but as a proactive and systematic investment in building a pipeline of leaders within an organization, so that when transitions are necessary, leaders at all levels are ready to answer the call.
Click here to learn of the processes laid out in this guide designed to help nonprofits.
Plan A: How Successful Nonprofits Develop Their Future Leaders, June 25, 2012, The Bridgespan Group, by Kirk Kramer and Preeta Nayak
7 / 20 / 2012
Make the Smartest Budget Decision of 2012
Save Money with Online Staff Training from Essential Learning Would you like to reduce the cost of training yo...
Save Money with Online Staff Training from Essential Learning
Would you like to reduce the cost of training your staff? Over 1,000 organizations in 50 states and Canada have realized significant savings in their training expenses by choosing an Essential Learning e-learning solution. E-Learning Is The Best Return On Your Investment. With an Essential Learning e-learning solution you can:
- Cut travel expenses by shifting mandatory trainings online
- Decrease the loss of billable hours and time away from the jobessential learning
- Reduce the time you spend administrating your training programs
- Keep your staff credentialed and productive
- Retain staff and get new employees on the job faster
- Reduce training costs by up to 70% by blending online training into your current training program
Click here to read Essential Learning's case study on e-learning training effectiveness. Discover how Essential Learning can help you lower training costs, maintain compliance with training requirements and increase staff productivity. Request a free online tour today! View additional tips for calculating your ROI. For more information email or call 800-729-9198, ext.296
7 / 13 / 2012
How to Make Sure Your Logo Tells Your Story
Your organization's logo offers the world a glimpse of who you are and what you do. It should not just be instant...
Your organization's logo offers the world a glimpse of who you are and what you do. It should not just be instantly recognizable but also offer a clear and compelling narrative that people will remember. Too often, nonprofits attempt to do too much with a logo, or they use generic, ubiquitous, and clichéd visual motifs that ignore what makes a group special. How many times have we seen a nonprofit using a logo with people holding hands? Or maybe the ever-popular abstract human-like figure.
However, if your logo looks like everyone else's logo, you stop saying anything at all. If all nonprofits see themselves as helping people and the planet, you don't really communicate anything valuable by focusing on such a generic theme.
To communicate the right message, it's important to find the right designer-someone who takes the time to understand your organization's core values and what makes you different. Then you can focus on creating a logo that truly captures your story. Here's what to keep in mind as you begin:
Overly complex logos can sometimes lead to funny misinterpretations.
Use shapes that have meaning.
Simplicity is key.
To read the entire article, click here.
How to Make Sure Your Logo Tells Your Story, July 12, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Matthew Scharpnick
7 / 13 / 2012
Are you looking for inspiring new approaches to strengthening and building your organization's impact through boa...
Are you looking for inspiring new approaches to strengthening and building your organization's impact through board leadership? Then tune in to BoardSource's YouTube channel.
This year, all applicants for the 2012 Prudential Leadership Awards for Exceptional Nonprofit Boards, submitted a short video addressing their board-driven achievements. BoardSource has now posted 24 of the entries on our YouTube channel.
- Take a look.
- Share your thoughts in a comment.
7 / 13 / 2012
The Donor Lifecycle Map as a Useful Development Planning Tool
The Donor Lifecycle Map, created by Sarah Clifton, is a terrific tool to use in creating a strategic fund raising pla...
The Donor Lifecycle Map, created by Sarah Clifton, is a terrific tool to use in creating a strategic fund raising plan. The focus of the Map is determining where a donor lies in terms of his/her lifetime giving to an organization, not on the size of any individual contribution or amount of personal assets. The Donor Lifecycle Map emphasizes relationship building as opposed to transactions and on moving a donor along from first gift to endowment. It can be used along with data about the size of any gift, but its major advantage, is that it helps to organize the strategic plan according to the "next step" for the donor or category of donors. The question for staff and volunteers then becomes what must be done or what resources should be expended on this individual or group of people depending upon where on the Lifecycle Map they lie.
Read the entire article here.
The Donor Lifecycle Map as a Useful Development Planning Tool, July 10, 2012, eJP, by Deborah Kaplan Polivy
7 / 13 / 2012
Community Outreach and Fundraising as an Integral Part of the NPO's Mission: Enlisting Professionals for Capacity Building
Those who manage nonprofit organizations are frequently involved in resource development and community outreach as si...
Those who manage nonprofit organizations are frequently involved in resource development and community outreach as significant aspects of our jobs. University presidents, hospital administrators and CEO's of other non-profit organizations (NPO's) can and should devote significant portions of their professional responsibility to these cejewish philanthropyritical elements of capacity building. First and foremost, nonprofit professional leaders and managers must recognize that donors rightly want to invest their funds in organizations with which they have confidence and trust, beginning with an accessible and personal connection to their leaders. For this reason, leaders of NPO's need to see fundraising and community outreach as a significant part of their personal professional vision and practically, of what they do day to day.
Read Enlisting Professionals for Capacity Building to learn why CEOs must include engaging his/her colleagues and other professionals in the mission-critical resource development process.
Enlisting Professionals for Capacity Building, July 10, 2012, eJP, by David B. Marcu, CEO of Israel Elwyn and past president of IAJVS
7 / 13 / 2012
7 Steps For Getting More Instagram Followers
As Instagram continues it's march to being the most popular mobile social network and most popular photo-sharing ...
As Instagram continues it's march to being the most popular mobile social network and most popular photo-sharing community in the world, figuring out the app can be difficult. Brands that are new to Instagram usually ask the same question: How can we get more followers?
After over a year managing one of the most active Instagram communities and starting a company based on Instagram, Brian DiFeo has learned some key strategies and best practices for a new brand interested in connecting with people on Instagram. For added inspiration, check out this list of brands on Instagram from Social Fresh.
Jumpstart with Existing Audiences
Content + Engagement
Have a Content Plan
Utilize Relevant Hashtags
Consider Running a Contest
Partner with Instagram Influencers
Use Third Party Websites
Overall, if you work for a brand that sees value in Instagram, don't just close the app after you post a photo. The Instagram community is passionate about photography and social networking. It is in your best interest to interact with your followers and engage with them much like you would on other popular sites.
To read about the 7 Steps in more detail, click here.
7 Steps For Gesocial freshtting More Instagram Followers, June 27, 2012, SocialFresh.com, by Brian DiFeo
7 / 13 / 2012
A Look at How the Environment Impacts Healthy Aging
In June, NCOA co-sponsored Healthy Environments Across Generations, an event organized by the Collaborative on Health...
In June, NCOA co-sponsored Healthy Environments Across Generations, an event organized by the Collaborative on Health and the Environment (CHE) to explore scientific evidence confirming that certain early life experiences can influence health later in life.
Medical research reveals that environmental factors play a major role in the majority of cases of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Diet, exercise, exposure to toxic chemicals and other environmental pollutants, and socioeconomic stress can alter biochemical pathways influencing the risk of these diseases and other chronic illnesses such as diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and metabolic syndrome.
Click here to learn more about chronic diseases driven by dramatic alterations over the past 50-100 years in the U.S. food supply and environment.
A Look at How the Environment Impacts Healthy Aging, July 6, 2012, NCOA
7 / 13 / 2012
10 Things Your Home Page Absolutely Must Have
What belongs on your home page? One definite must is an impossible-to-miss Donate button. The "Donate Now&q...
What belongs on your home page?
One definite must is an impossible-to-miss Donate button. The "Donate Now" button should immediately take the user to the donation form, with no intermediate steps.
Another must is a way to capture information from people not ready to give. It takes time to cultivate supporters, so include an email sign-up so that you can build a relationship with visitors and turn them into donors in the future. Think beyond "join our mailing list".
So what are the other eight things? Click here-Network for Good has the rest of answers.
10 Things Your Home Page Absolutely Must Have, June 26, 2012, Kayta's Nonprofit Marketing Blog, by Katya Andersen
6 / 29 / 2012
From Small to Scale: Three Trade-offs for Smaller Nonprofits Trying to Get Big
"Money often costs too much," wrote the philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson. Many leaders of smaller nonprofits...
"Money often costs too much," wrote the philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson. Many leaders of smaller nonprofits, struggling to find the funds to grow or sustain programs, surely feel the same way. It is easy to rack up costs chasing after foundation grants, public donations, and government funds, and the wrong chase can be financially fatal.
Truth be told, for most smaller nonprofits, growing revenue is more scattershot than science. Often, they can meet their budgets by inspiring a handful of donors, seizing unanticipated funding opportunities, or patching together a variety of funding sources. At the other end of the spectrum (as reported in the 2007 Nonprofit Quarterly article "In Search of Sustainable Funding: Is Diversity of Sources Really the Answer"), nonprofits that grow very large tend to be highly focused: they raise most of their money from a single type of funder (such as corporations or government) that is a good match for their mission.
But how do you connect the dots? Is the path to growth linear, or are there distinct, required inflection points in funding strategy as a smaller or midsize organization grows? And how does a smaller nonprofit need to adapt organizationally as funding needs change over time?
To begin to answer these questions, read the remainder of this article.
From Small to Scale: Three Trade-offs for Smaller Nonprofits Trying to Get Big, May 8, 2012, Nonprofit Quarterly, by Peter Kim, Suzanne Tollerud and Gail Perreault
6 / 29 / 2012
Why You Can't Have a Huge, Active Community Paying Attention at All Times
Katya Andersen is often asked, "How do we scale our dedicated fan base?" Here's the challenge. A lot of...
Katya Andersen is often asked, "How do we scale our dedicated fan base?" Here's the challenge. A lot of organizations (both nonprofit and for-profit) start with a dedicated following. Then they try to grow their community bigger and bigger. Along the way, they keep talking to their audience as if it was one, homogeneous audience. But it's not. A lot of people lose interest, because they care about different things. The audience starts disengaging and dwindling. And you might end up with a small audience that isn't dedicated at all. That's the rub.
As Clay Shirky said in his book, Cognitive Surplus, "People differ. More people differ more...and intimacy doesn't scale." He says everyone wants three things:
- A large group of people
- An active group of people.
- A group paying attention to the same thing.
It would be nice and easy if you're in nonprofit marketing to have that be possible. But the problem is, you have to pick two. You can't have all three at the same time. So decide. As you grow and your audience diversifies, are you willing to segment that larger group into smaller groups? And talk to each of those smaller groups in a different way, based on their interests? It's what you need to keep growing. One message does not fit one mass.
Why You Can't Have a Huge, Active Community Paying Attention at All Times, June 18, 2012, Katya's Nonprofit Marketing Blog, by Katya Andersen
6 / 29 / 2012
11 Ways to Improve your Sponsorship Packages with Online Perks
If your organization works with corporate sponsors, you've probably put some thought into defining the different ...
If your organization works with corporate sponsors, you've probably put some thought into defining the different levels of sponsorship and what to include in each. Such perks can help lure new sponsors by offering a return on their investment beyond just a charitable contribution or can tempt existing sponsors to increase their donation.
There's an entirenpt realm of perks you can offer to increase the value of your sponsorship packages. By thinking about ways to incorporate online resources into your packages, including websites, email and social media, you might find exciting new ways to draw sponsors and let your community know about the businesses that help make your programs possible.
Here are 11 examples, some common, some more unusual, to get you started when thinking about your next set of sponsorship packages.
- Online logo placement.
- Online ads.
- Visual branding.
- Naming rights.
- Employee perks.
- Social media promotion.
- Sponsor guest posting.
- Videos and photos about the partnership.
- Let them provide real-time information.
- Introduce them to your list with an email.
- Offer opt-ins for information from your sponsor.
Click here to read about the 11 examples in more detail.
11 Ways to Improve your Sponsorship Packages with Online Perks, May 3, 2012, The Nonprofit Times, by Laura S. Quinn
6 / 29 / 2012
Beyond Dashboards: Business Intelligence Tools for Program Analysis and Reporting
Strategic, mission-critical decisions require a clear understanding of program performance, but for most nonprofits, ...
Strategic, mission-critical decisions require a clear understanding of program performance, but for most nonprofits, making decisions on facts rather than gut feelings is easier said than done. As a way to better understand program performance and become more responsive to changes, organizations are increasingly turning to dashboards-custom utilities that gather, organize and present information in an accessible way-that let them more effectively measure, monitor and manage the way they meet their missions.
There are a number of ways to create dashboards, including using such common tools such as Excel or Access, or proprietary systems embedded in databases. But these approaches can lead to dashboards that are not very user-friendly and difficult to update.
Business Intelligence tools, or "BI" tools, take the dashboard idea to the next level. More than simply graphically displaying static data, they offer trend analysis, forecasting and drill-down capabilities that can dramatically expand your insight into program performance. With a good BI tool, you can combine data from multiple sources, view it from different perspectives and distribute it more easily. Beyond simple reporting, BI tools allow a more comprehensive analysis of your organization's data.
Not every organization needs a BI tool, but if you have a solid strategy for program evaluation and monitoring and already capturing the raw data you need, but struggling to analyze data and make use of it, one of these tools might be a good fit.
Click here to take a closer look at what BI tools can offer and how they work.
Beyond Dashboards: Business Intelligence Tools for Program Analysis and Reporting, June 20, 2012, Idealware, by By Patrick Yurgosky
6 / 22 / 2012
Six Theory of Change Pitfalls to Avoid
Over the past decade, more and more nonprofits have developed a theory of change- that is, an articulation of the res...
Over the past decade, more and more nonprofits have developed a theory of change- that is, an articulation of the results an orstanford social innovation reviewganization must achieve to be successful, and how it, working alone or with others, will achieve them. Organizations do this either of their own volition or because funders, board members, or other parties ask them to do so. In fact, according to Innovation Network's State of Evaluation 2010, half of nonprofits report having a theory of change, and of those, nearly 80 percent either created or revised it in the past year. But simply putting boxes and lines down on paper doesn't guarantee that your organization will make better decisions.
To start, a good theory of change should answer six big questions:
1. Who are you seeking to influence or benefit (target population)?
2. What benefits are you seeking to achieve (results)?
3. When will you achieve them (time period)?
4. How will you and others make this happen (activities, strategies, resources, etc.)?
5. Where and under what circumstances will you do your work (context)?
6. Why do you believe your theory will bear out (assumptions)?
Read the entire article to learn about the six major pitfalls that, if avoided, can help nonprofits create actionable theories of change.
Six Theory of Change Pitfalls to Avoid, May 23, 2012, Stanford Social Innovation Review, by Matthew Forti
6 / 22 / 2012
Volunteers Are Not Free Labor
Most nonprofit organizations are thrilled to have volunteers working with them. Unfortunately, not all understand tha...
Most nonprofit organizations are thrilled to have volunteers working with them. Unfortunately, not all understand that before they can reap the benefits of utilizing volunteers, they must first commit to providing them with a meaningful experience. Only by investing and committing to the person who is prepared to donate their time will thejewish philanthropye volunteer be an asset to the organization.
Remember that from the perspective of the volunteers, they want an experience that simultaneously enables them to help people, learn new things and develop new skills while they are providing a service to the community. When an organization invests in its volunteers the volunteers will better serve the agency and feel a deeper sense of accomplishment, which ultimately benefits everyone involved.
Click here to read more about developing a meaningful volunteer experience: designating a volunteer staff member, drafting a letter of agreement, volunteer training, guidance, supervision and the importance of volunteer feedback.
Volunteers Are Not Free Labor, June 20, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
6 / 22 / 2012
Collaborating in Good and Bad Times for the Right Reasons
Though it may not always feel like it, the Great Recession officially ended in June 2009--three years ago. Nonprofits...
Though it may not always feel like it, the Great Recession officially ended in June 2009--three years ago. Nonprofits have been hit hard with increased demand for services and a shifting funding landscape in the years since the economic crisis began, and predictably there has been much talk of a resulting spike in collaborations and mergers. But the notionchronicle philanthropy that collaborations are somehow linked with recessions leads to the false assumption that nonprofits should collaborate because of financial motivations.
Organizing strategic collaborations solely to reduce costs does not set up collaborating partners for success, and it ignores a fundamental function: to do a better job of accomplishing the mission.
So why do we associate tough economic times with collaborations and mergers?
Read the entire article to learn the answer and more about the right reasons to collaborate.
Collaborating in Good and Bad Times for the Right Reasons, June 1, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Peter Kramer
6 / 22 / 2012
9 MORE Ways Board Members Can Raise Money Without Fundraising
According to Social Velocity President, Nell Edgington it seems so obvious to that there are a million different ways...
According to Social Velocity President, Nell Edgington it seems so obvious to that there are a million different ways for board members to contribute to the bottom-line of their nonprofits, that it didn't occur to her that a list like 9 Ways Board Members Can Raise Money Without Fundraising could be so valuable. But apparently it was.
So Nell wanted to add to the list, to give people even more ideas for how their board can contribute to the financial engine of their nonprofit without ever asking for money. And maybe with all of these options, more nonprofits will institute a requirement that EVERY board member contribute (either with a personal gift or by implementing some of these ideas) financially to the organization. So here are 9 more ways that board members who are fundraising "shy" can raise money for their nonprofit:
- Invite 5 Friends to Tour the Program
- Talk About Your Nonprofit on Facebooksocial velocity
- Show Up to One of Your Nonprofit's Events
- Tell The Story Of Why You Serve
- Help Craft a Case for Support
- Analyze Your Networks
- Go on a Solicitation Call
- Educate a Funder About the Power of Capacity Capital
- Give a Gift
Read the entire article to learn about these nine ways in more detail.
9 MORE Ways Board Members Can Raise Money Without Fundraising, June 20, 2012, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
6 / 22 / 2012
4 Laws of Networks - and What They Say About Your Best Messenger
If there's one thing that's changed in marketing lately, it's the relative importance of the messenger. N...
If there's one thing that's changed in marketing lately, it's the relative importance of the messenger. Not so long ago, the world was dominated by broadcast marketing - also known as "spray and pray." You were the messenger, and you'd promulgate your official message to as many people as possible, praying that someone would listen - and buy, give or act. And a lot of the time it worked. Old-school advertisers will remember Sarnoff's Law, which said the value of a rkatya nonprofit marketing blogadio or TV station was proportional to the number of listeners or viewers. When a viewer was added, the value of ad space went up by one.
But in an era when most of the world's population has a phone and is half connect to the Internet, the most important messengers aren't the official ones - they are our peers, whose opinions are just a click away. When Edelman's 2012 Trust Barometer came out earlier this year, the biggest finding was the increasing stock people put in the recommendations of people like them. We've all experienced it. When is the last time you trusted an ad for a hotel over a review on Trip Advisor? In speaking about this finding, David Armano of Edelman noted, it is important that we "share the stage with 'regular' people who have a voice via a variety of social channels," as well as to be "in tune with the topics and issues they care about and discuss."
Click here to read more and learn what model applies to this new peer-dominated world.
4 Laws of Networks, June 19 2012, Katya's Nonprofit Marketing Blog, by Katya Andersen
6 / 15 / 2012
Talent Management: Diversity & Inclusion, Mentoring, Onboarding and Succession Planning
The National Human Services Assembly (NHSA) recently undertook a study of the practices of some of its members relati...
The National Human Services Assembly (NHSA) recently undertook a study of the practices of some of its members relating to diversity and inclusion and has produced a report entitled, Retaining and Developing High Potential Talent. The report begins by noting that having a policy that encourages diversity in hiring does not go far enough. Agencies must incorporate the value of their diverse workforce into the fabric of the organizational culture in order to show tangible results. The report offers a toolkit of five key elements for building a successful approach:
- Planning: Begin with the end goals in mind so that you can demonstrate success.
- Set the Tone: Create a climate of respect and acceptance for all.
- Communicate: List diversity and inclusion in your core values, highlight progress and embed the diversity message wherever possible.
- Ensure Accountability: Clearly specify the responsibility of each person on every management level and tie in to performance reviews.
- Evaluate: Track successes and failures; benchmark using labor force statistics to compare yourself to the market standard.
The report goes on to discuss three practices that can provide the largest boost to talent management at the lowest cost: mentoring, onboarding and succession planning. Through benefits analysis and case studies, the report illustrates the best practices in these crucial talent management tools. To read the entire report, click here.
6 / 15 / 2012
The Meaning of FRD: Where's the Money?
During the last several years there has been a perception that nonprofit organizations have become more knowledgeable...
During the last several years there has been a perception that nonprofit organizations have become more knowledgeable about financial resource development. Recently Stephen Donshik, nonprofit consultant had two experiences with two large well established and sophisticated organizations in Israel. Although he expected there to be an understanding that fundraising is not about collecting checks it was surprising to learn that the development professionals working in the nonprofits were far more attuned than the chief executive officers of the organizations.
It is not easy to be a CEO and responsible for the day to day operations, however it is important to not lose sight of the bigger picture and the longer view of developing an organization. There must be a focus on the importance of strategically cultivating support by developing and maintaining positive relationships with donors. The CEO has to provide support and encouragement to enable the FRD professional to be able to be effective in assuring the nonprofit's financial sustainability.
Click here to read the entire article and learn more about the tension that exists between CEOs and Fund Development professionals.
The Meaning of FRD: Where's the Money? June 13, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
6 / 15 / 2012
Ditch Your Board Composition Matrix
You know the board matrix: it has a list of skills and competencies that are "supposed" to be on the board,...
You know the board matrix: it has a list of skills and competencies that are "supposed" to be on the board, such as legal, marketingblue avacado, HR, fundraising, finance. And typically there are also demographic qualities, such as gender, race, age. The board matrix then shows what boxes you presumably need to fill.
What's wrong here is that these board composition matrices focus our attention on what people are, rather than on what the organization needs board members to do.
Three traps of the board composition matrix
Let's look at the three failures of board matrix approaches:
- The skills trap.
- The demographic trap.
- The connections trap.
By focusing on what people will do rather than what people are, we accomplish three goals, which you can read more about in the entire article, as well as details surrounding the three failures of board matrix approaches.
Ditch Your Board Composition Matrix, June 11, 2012, Board Cafe, by Jan Masaoka
6 / 15 / 2012
What Millennialmillennial impact reports Want-And How They Give
The 2012 Millennial Impact Report - a survey of more than 6,500 people ages 20 to 35 - shows 75% of millennials donat...
The 2012 Millennial Impact Report - a survey of more than 6,500 people ages 20 to 35 - shows 75% of millennials donate (in small amounts), 70% have fundraised for their favorite causes and most give for reasons that span generations---they have a relationship with the cause. The survey, which was conducted by Achieve and Johnsomillennial infographicn, Grossnickle, and Associates, yielded these additional results and implications:
- The majority of their donations were $100 or less per organization per year.
- Millennials give for emotional reasons and like to "give in the moment."
- 75% of respondents have a smartphone, and 7% said they had given via text message or through a mobile site. The number one reason they haven't given on mobile is they weren't asked.
- Most prefer to learn about nonprofits via their websites, followed by social media and e-newsletters. Your website still matters most online, folks!
- About 70 percent of young donors reported that they had made a gift online in 2011.
- About 39 percent of those who made a gift reported that they had responded to an in-person request, and 34 percent said they had made a gift through the mail. So asking through multiple channels is wise, just as it is with all generations of donors.
- 67% of respondents have interacted with nonprofits on Facebook and 92% have "liked" a nonprofit's Facebook page. Only 28% had interacted with a nonprofit on Twitter.
- When it comes to volunteering, 81% prefer to hear about opportunities from their peers. 63% had volunteered for a nonprofit in 2011.
You can access the full study here.
6 / 15 / 2012
5 Website Design Mistakes That Are Killing Your Social Media
We spend all this time and capital on social media. Creating wonderful content. Producing engaging campaigns. Respond...
We spend all this time and capital on social media. Creating wonderful content. Producing engaging campaigns. Responding to our communities and creating a groundswell of support. But what happens after sometimes can ruin it all. You might have an amazing social media presence, and then the customer sees your website, and all that momentum is lost.
Bad Web Design Is Killing Your Business
While there is no limit to the amount of cringe-worthy design elements you can find online, these are some of the biggest mistakes businesses make on a regular basis. What makes most of these mistakes even worse is the fact many of them can be easily avoided by planning ahead and implementing a simple design strategy.social fresh
- No clear call to action
- Confusing navigation
- Not testing different browsers
- Incorporating way too much Flash
- Poor readability
While this represents a small sample, all of these issues can be avoided by taking a proactive approach and carefully planning out both your web design and online marketing strategy. By utilizing some common best practices, you can increase the traffic to your website, as well as improve your chances of obtaining more online conversions.
Click here to read the entire article and learn about the five website design mistakes in more depth.
5 Website Design Mistakes That Are Killing Your Social Media, May 16, 2012, socialfresh.com, by Amy Moczynski
6 / 8 / 2012
Good Governance Makes Tax Compliance More Likely, Says IRS Study
Charities that follow certain good-governance practices-for example, drawing up written mission statements and compar...
Charities that follow certain good-governance practices-for example, drawing up written mission statements and comparing their organizations to others when making compensation decisions-are more likely to comply with the Internal Revenue Service's tax code, according to preliminary results from a new IRS study.
The study was described by Lois Lerner, director of the IRS division that oversees charities, in a speech at Georgetown University Law School. "Good governance and tax compliance go hand in hand," she said.
The study, Ms. Lerner said, analyzed information provided by more than 1,300 charities that the IRS examined for reasons unrelated to their governance practices. But when researchers later reviewed those practices-as reported on the organizations' Form 990 informational tax returns-they found certain correlations.
The new study, Ms. Lerner said, found that charities are more likely to follow IRS tax rules if they:
- Have a written mission statement
- Always compare their organization to others in making decisions about compensation
- Have procedures to ensure that contributions and other revenues are used in accordance with the organization's charitable mission
- Require all trustees to review the organization's Form 990.
Charities were less likely to meet IRS standards when control of their organization was in the hands of one person or a small number of trustees, the study found.
Click here to read more about the good governance and the IRS study.
Good Governance Makes Tax Compliance More Likely, Says IRS Study, April 20, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Richard White
6 / 8 / 2012
Businesses Measure Profit, What Do Social Ventures Measure?
It's becoming more and more of a necessity to find a way to measure and compare the impact of social entrepreneur...
It's becoming more and more of a necessity to find a way to measure and compare the impact of social entrepreneurship. A few companies are making new headway.
Tracking performance in the for-profit world is simple; you have, well, profits. Plus tons of metrics and measurers and lists--from the Fortune 500 toboard source the Forbes Rich list to further enshrine top performers. Without looking, you can probably name most of the top 10% of either of those lists. But which are the top social-good organizations? Who are the most influential leaders? What organizations have the most significant impact?
Where do you even start? Lives saved? Diseases treated? Laptops distributed? Trees not cut down? Parts-per-million reductions in pollution? It's easy to measure effort expended, but much more complex to track impact directly attributed to your efforts. Even in situations where measurement and evaluation are core to a project, they remain that task you do after you've completed the project to fulfill the grant contract, not inherently valuable.
It's easy to measure effort expended, but much more complex to track impact.
Read the entire article to learn more about evaluating and measuring social good.
Businesses Measure Profit, What Do Social Ventures Measure? May 17, 2012, BoardSource, by Alexa Clay and Jon Camfield
6 / 8 / 2012
How to Get Donors to Relate to Your Nonprofit -- and Give More
Giving is personal. The closer we feel to a cause, the more likely we are to give. Just how much do personal con...
Giving is personal. The closer we feel to a cause, the more likely we are to give.
Just how much do personal connections influence giving? When people have a personal connection to a cause (ornetwork for good know someone who does), it can lead them - and others - to be more supportive. The researchers delved into the nuances of this "norm of self-interest." What they found is incredibly important.
Personal connections and stories have a big effect on giving - so if you've got them, use them.
Another way that giving is personal is that we give more when we feel we're helping another person to whom we can relate. This has been called the "identifiable victim effect" or "singularity effect."
Click here to learn how to reduce the feeling of social distance amongst your agency and your donors.
How to Get Donors to Relate to Your Nonprofit -- and Give More, May 17, 2012, Network for Good, by Katya Andresen, Mark Rovner & Alia McKee
6 / 8 / 2012
Funders and Apes: Seven Steps for Constructive Failure
On May 18th Andres Spokoiny, CEO of the Jewish Funders Network wrote a bit about how funders, like all humans, are pr...
On May 18th Andres Spokoiny, CEO of the Jewish Funders Network wrote a bit about how funders, like all humans, are programmed by millions of years of evolution to hate failure. But, according to Andres our DNA hasn't kept pace with tejewish philanthropyhe changing times. If our brains were adapted to the modern world instead of the prehistoric reality of the first apes with opposable thumbs, we would have created different neurological and chemical reactions to failure. We would have realized that in these times our survival depends on embracing productive failure. Until that realization occurs, we need to trick our brains into interpreting failure differently.
For philanthropists and funders, embracing failure means creating a culture change. In complex endeavors, failure is a given. Here are seven strategies to help capitalize on the inevitable.
- Remain focused and strategic, but diversify.
- Ready, fire, aim.
- Have a mechanism to analyze and create feedback loops.
- Fail cheap and fail fast.
- Organizational culture matters.
- Let the information flow.
Read the entire article to learn about the seven strategies in depth.
Funders and Apes: Seven Steps for Constructive Failure, May 21, 2012, eJP, by Andres Spokoiny
6 / 8 / 2012
Reaching Millennials Through Email
The conversation on email's demise and how Millennial's refuse to use it continues to be debated. According t...
The conversation on email's demise and how Millennial's refuse to use it continues to be debated. According to Nielsen's report, State of the Media: Advertising and Audiences, 61% of the general population checks email while they watch TV. And 52% of 13-17 year-olds check email while watching TV. It's interesting to note that 62% of Millennials checked social networks while watching TV, which is only a 10% increase over checking email.
Although the study didn't reveal what devices Millenials were checking email on, it's safe to say that a significant percentage was checking it via mobile. This is why it's important that organizations tweak (not abandon) their email strategy to reach Millennials and other target audiences who are increasingly using mobile email.
Four Key Mobile Email Tips
- Keep emails short and to the point. People are reading your email on a small, 4 inch screen and are often in a rush.
- Don't use large graphics. They take up a lot of room on a small screen. They can also take a while to download, which will annoy users and cause them to delete your message.
- Content should be scannable and flow down the screen.
- Use a mobile style sheet to setup your email in an email/CRM system.
Read the entire article here to learn more about millennials and email.
Reaching Millennials Through Email, April 29, 2012, frogloop, by Allyson Kapin
6 / 8 / 2012
Returning to Facebook Groups
According to Debra Askanase, founder of Community Organizer 2.0, "Facebook Groups, not Pages, were written off a...
According to Debra Askanase, founder of Community Organizer 2.0, "Facebook Groups, not Pages, were written off and abandoned by almost every organization once Pages beefed up its functionality three years ago, but Groups is where the real community engagement is happening now."
According to her presentation, Engage! "Like"-able Social Media, Miriam Brosseau, Social Media Coalitions Manager at the Jewish Education Project and JCSA Annual Conference presenter agrees. Miriam focused on the basics of the social JCSANA logo for contestmedia revolution and the importance of not just presenting information, but engaging constituents through social media at the 114th JCSA Conference, held on June 5th in Baltimore. As the session came to an end, Miriam briefly mentioned the reemergence of Facebook Groups. Many left the room intrigued, an effect discussions surrounding social media seem to have and also interested in Facebook Groups, which they knew little of.
Debra admits that like so many consultants, she advised clients to close their Groups and focus on Pages a few years ago. With good reason: Facebook came out with the Like button that tied Facebook Pages to websites and almost every web interface. Facebook poured its time and promotion into Pages, making them even more robust with deep analytics, applications, and utility. There was no "join" button offered to join a Facebook Group, only a poorly-adopted "send" button.
Read Debra's entire article to learn more about Facebook Groups. "The answer lies in what I've begun to realize that Facebook Pages cannot offer: real community and deep engagement."
Returning to Facebook Groups, June 4, 2012, eJP, by Debra Askanase
6 / 1 / 2012
Social Media Benchmarks for Smaller Organizations
When it comes to technology, it's often assumed that smaller organizations just don't have the resources to u...
When it comes to technology, it's often assumed that smaller organizations just don't have the resources to use the tools and services that larger nonprofits do. Fancy databases? Too expensive. Up-to-date computers on a working network? Not enough tech savvy staff to keep it going. While there are exceptions to the rule - and cloud services are helping make more of those exceptions - it's generally the case.
NTEN sees it year after year in their IT Staffing Survey - unless, as it turns out, you are talking about social media.
In the recently released Nonprofit Network Social Network Survey, when it comes to social media, smaller nonprofits are keeping pace with their larger counterparts, adopting and using social media at similar rates. It helps, of course, that Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest are all free to use. But it still takes an investment of time, and small nonprofits are making it.
Read the remainder of the article to learn more about smaller organizations and social media.
Social Media Benchmarks for Smaller Organizations, May 17, 2012, NTEN, by Holly
6 / 1 / 2012
4 Things that Should Shake Up Nonprofit Marketing
Blogger Katya Andresen is the COO of Network for Good and an NTEN Board Member. Below she shares a great blog; short ...
Blogger Katya Andresen is the COO of Network for Good and an NTEN Board Member. Below she shares a great blog; short and to the point with very well made suggestions.
Katya writes, "I used the word 'should' in the title of this post for a reason. These trends are shaking up the nonprofit sector, but they're not yet shaking up our marketing. And they should be.
- The rise of mobile. More and more people have smartphones, and that means doing good is at their fingertips, all the time. If we don't create opportunities to act easily via mobile, we are going to miss out on a lot. Multichannel works best - and multichannel means mobile too.
- The growth of peer networks. People listen to each other more than us, so we need to stop viewing social media as another form of getting our message out. Its primary value is that it allows other people to get the message out, for us.
- The explosion of slacktivism. It is not bad. It is promising. Clay Shirky once said 'Activists are active but not everyone else is.' We have to grasp that - and not write off everyone who isn't a zealot. And as Katya said on Mashable, it's a starting point for your cause. Katya would rather have someone sign her petition than do nothing any day, because she or he is far more likely to take further action, later.
- The increasing personalization of everything. We're in an era where marketing and communications are increasingly tailored to the individual. If we're still blasting out one message, we will alienate every last person. Make people a part of your cause and speak to their interests.
The old ways aren't working as well for a reason. Let's shake it up ourselves, so these tectonic changes work to our favor rather than rendering us irrelevant."
4 Things that Should Shake Up Nonprofit Marketing, April 16, 2012, Katya's Nonprofit Marketing Blog
6 / 1 / 2012
10 Awesome Free Tools to Make Infographics
Information graphics, visual representations of data known as infographics, keep the web going these days. Web users,...
Information graphics, visual representations of data known as infographics, keep the web going these days. Web users, with their diminishing attention spans, are inexorably drawn to these shiny, brightly colored messages with small, relevant, clearly-displayed nuggets of information. They're straight to the point, usually factually interesting and often give you a wake-up call as to what those statistics really mean.
make use of
Some great tips for designing infographics:
- Keep it simple! Don't try to do too much in one picture.
- Decide on a colour scheme.
- Research some great facts and statistics.
- Think of it as a visual essay: ensure your arguments hold and are relevant.
- Remember that it's all about quickly conveying the meaning behind complex data.
- Draw conclusions.
- Reference your facts in the infographic.
- Include your URL so people can be sure who made it.
Click here to learn about infographics, including tutorials on infographic creation, and free online tools and software for creating infographics.
10 Awesome Free Tools to Make Infographics, October 8, 2010, makeuseof.com, by Angela Alcom
6 / 1 / 2012
According to a Booz & Company/Buddy Media survey released last October of more than 100 large companies, only a t...
According to a Booz & Company/Buddy Media survey released last October of more than 100 large companies, only a third have a senior executive charged with overseeing social media. And just over a third (38%) reported social media as a CEO-level agenda item. There are nearly a billion people on Facebook - just about everyone, that is, except CEOs.
Since 2005 executives from corporations, government agencies and nonprofit organizations have expressed their discomfort using social media for business purposes. The problem for them isn't learning which button to push; if that were difficult seniors wouldn't be the fastest growing segment on Facebook. The real problem is that using social media challenges their basic assumptions of what it means to be "professional." The definition of professional behavior is an immutable set of behaviors developed early in one's career.
Read Allison's entire blog to learn the new definition of professional behavior according to the developing social world.
What Does "Professional" Look Like Today? May 9, 2012, HBR Blog Network, by Allison Fine
6 / 1 / 2012
Creating a Culture of Data-Driven Philanthropy
Measuring social impact and nonprofit effectiveness has been the white elephant for our sector since its inception. U...
Measuring social impact and nonprofit effectiveness has been the white elephant for our sector since its inception. Unlike for-profits, where the bottom line often defines success or failure in black and white, nonprofits live in a world of grey, evaluated on their success in achieving their mission and on how they raise and spend their money.
But when the solutions to social problems are so incredibly complex, it's not easy to come up with models for standardized assessment that we can have confidence in. On top of that, every organization is structured differently and has different financial needs to support its mission. In part, this is why donors use online ratings systems. When nonprofits are faced with a massive library of data and a limited amount of time, we will inevitably seek out the easiest way to get the answers we need - even if we know that the shortcut may oversimplify the picture.
The problem is that the ratios most commonly used for rapid analysis, typically focused on spending or growth, are not accurate measures of either organizational health of social impact. When nonprofit supporters use these metrics to make funding decisions, they contribute to a cycle that awards nonprofits for operating on razor-thin margins, ultimately distracting them from where their vision needs to be: on solving social problems. After all, if an organization could prove to you that they could eradicate homelessness, would you care as much about what they spent on salaries and staplers?
Creating a Culture of Data-Driven Philanthropy, April 30, 2012, Nonprofit Finance Fund, by Anjali Deshmukh
6 / 1 / 2012
How to Turn Event Participants Into Long-Term Donors - PODCAST
Knowing how to identify which eventgoers are have the potential to become generous long-term donors can help an organ...
Knowing how to identify which eventgoers are have the potential to become generous long-term donors can help an organization in the long run.
Marathons, walkathons, and other athletic events can add a one-time lift to an organization's bottom line. But the real value comes when nonprofits use the events to identify new donors with the resources to give big.
In the latest episode of Fundraising Fundamentals, Susan Paresky, vice president for development at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, explains how her organization figures out which event participants are charitably inclined and have the resources to give. She also explains how the organization pursues prospects. She is joined by Therese Grohman, director of marketing at Event 360, a consulting company that specializes in working with nonprofits to plan fundraising events. Listen to the podcast here.
5 / 25 / 2012
Measuring the Return on Engagement of Community Commitment
Debra Askanase, founder of Community Organizer 2.0, explains below, how to measure the success of one's online presence....
"I've been talking and thinking a lot about measuring social media engagement with colleagues, nonprofits, and social media activists. Two years ago, those of us participating in social media engagement and strategy were trying to come up with 'the' metric to define social media tactical success. We argued and conversed, exchanged thoughts, and thought about why it's so hard to pin this down. And then social media practice evolved, as did the thinking about measurement. In fact, it's crystal clear to me now:
SMART goal Return on Engagement, and the ROE of Community Commitment
Using these two metrics, an organization can get a pretty good sense of whether or not its online activities and strategies are working, and whether or not it is building a community of committed stakeholders."
Read the entire article here.
Measuring the Return on Engagement of Community Commitment, May 23, 2012, eJP, by Debra Askanase
5 / 25 / 2012
Smaller Boards Flexible, Engage All Members
Nonprofit boards typically get big because of a give-or-get policy, adding members and morphing board sourceinto fundrai...
According to the BoardSource 2010 Governance Index Survey, the average size of a board is 16 members, with a median of 15. Organizations with budgets of $10 million or more have an average of 18, according to the index, and those with less than $1 million typically have 14. Some states require only a minimum number of board members for a nonprofit, as few as one, two or three.
Read more about smaller boards and engaging members here.
Smaller Boards Flexible, Engage All Members, May 1, 2012, The Nonprofit Times, by Mark Hrywna
5 / 25 / 2012
How Do I Draw On A Computer?
Hand-drawn images can add color and personality to your organization's website, blog and Facebook page, but how can you ...
How Do I Draw On A Computer? May 2, 2012, Idealware, by Chris Bernard
5 / 25 / 2012
Establish Social Media Knowledge Sharing Practices
Social media cannot thrive in silos. What is happening online affects the entire organization, not just the marketing de...
There are six essential pieces of information that should be shared throughout the organization:ejp full logo
- Social media metrics
- Social media roles and activities
- Online mentions of the organization
- Online mentions of a specific keyword, phrase, competitor, or conversation topic that is of interest to the organization
- Digital campaign activities and results
- Online identities, apps, channels, tools, and platforms: what you use to make social media magic
Read the remainder of the article to learn about ideas for establishing a knowledge sharing culture.
Establish Social Media Knowledge Sharing Practices, May 14, 2012, eJP, by Debra Askanase
5 / 25 / 2012
NTEN Hosts Technology Leadership Academy
Now more than ever, nonprofit leaders must understand the potential technology has to help them meet their missions. You...
The Nonprofit Technology Network's Technology Leadership Academy is a training program designed to help you do just that. NTEN, endorsed by Brian I. Block, AJFCA Annual Conference presenter and Social Media Strategist, is able to offer the Technology Leadership Academy at no charge to qualifying organizations (with operating revenues of less than $2 million). Learn more and apply (by June 8th).
The Academy is a unique opportunity to learn and interact with your peers while creating a tight network of nonprofit leaders working towards a common mission: using technology to create social change. This intensive nine-week technology boot camp of sorts is led by some of the top names in nonprofit tech including AJFCA partner, Idealware, who will be leading a session on "Bringing Order to Your Constituent Data" at the upcoming academy in July.
NTEN will offer the Academy one more time in 2012.
5 / 18 / 2012
JWI Releases Shavuot Study Guides
Jewish Women International is releasing the second in a series of study guides related to women, relationships, and Jewi...
Rethinking Shavuot is designed thematically to highlight the centrality of three ways to journey toward safety and well-being: living in a community, doing incremental acts of kindness and envisioning a different future. It combines text from the biblical story of Ruth, the heroine of this holiday, with traditional and contemporary commentaries and prompts for conversations.
The guide is designed for use in both formal and informal settings including synagogues, study groups, book clubs, or simply, a group of friends. Please download the guide from the JWI website and share it with friends and colleagues.
5 / 18 / 2012
A List of Names is Not Enough
Recently, Stephen Donshik, lecturer at Hebrew University's International Nonprofit Management and Leadership Program, ha...
A red light went off in Donshik's head when he was told about this frustration in dealing with the center directors. Donshik immediately thought of several very important issues and possible dilemmas raised by this scenario. Although the professional's request appears to be quite simple, it is actually very complicated and elicits a number of ethical and professional issues.
Read the entire article to learn more about the issues that accompany requesting a list.
A List of Names is Not Enough, May 9, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
5 / 18 / 2012
2012 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study Highlights Online Advocacy, Fundraising, and Social Media Metrics
The 2012 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study was recently released and is packed with insightful data on advocacy and fundraisin...
Email Open Rates:
- Advocacy messages had the highest open rates, click-through rates and response rates - as well as the lowest unsubscribe rates, similar to AJFCA's legislative updates.
- Overall, email open rates held steady between 2010 and 2011. This is an important trend to note because over the past few years, the open rates were declining. Considering that list size has increased, and that older names will often grow stale, a year-over-year rate that remains steady is quite positive. AJFCA's open rates continue to climb.
- In 2011, the median email open rate was 14%. In 2011 the AJFCA median email open rate was 25%.
Email List Size: Nonprofits online lists grew on average by 16%. AJFCA's list continues to grow by almost 10% every two months.
Churn Rates: Churn refers to the rate at which people unsubscribe, opt-out, or otherwise leave your lists and are an important metric to pay attention to. The average list churn rate is 19%.
Learn more data regarding email click-thru rates, online fundraising, average message sent per month per subscriber, social media and mobile by reading Kapin's entire blog.
2012 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study Highlights Online Advocacy, Fundraising, April 9, 2012, frogloop, by Allyson Kapin
5 / 18 / 2012
Speeding Up Your Nonprofit's Web Site
If your organization's Web site isn't up to speed, you could be losing donors and other supporters. But a free online to...
Those recommendations also come with a Page Speed score designed to show how much a site can improve. The score doesn't measure the actual time it takes for a site to load on a computer screen, because that is influenced by the size of a page in bytes, server hardware, and other factors. But it does help gauge whether a site is performing as well as it can.
Read more about web site efficiency here in the remainder of the article.
Speeding Up Your Nonprofit's Web Site, April 30, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Cody Switzer
5 / 18 / 2012
If You Say You're Innovative, You're Probably Not
One of the best parts of Derrick Feldman's job, beyond working with some great clients, is traveling to speak about the ...
Many of these conversations start with an all too familiar opening: "My organization is innovative because..." Usually, the individual will go on to describe why the services offered by his or her organization are unique and unlike other nonprofits'. Indeed, this claim of innovation is becoming more and more common.
Unfortunately, while some nonprofits truly do have unique program models and service delivery approaches, most do not. So maybe it's time we had a discussion about what truly makes an organization innovative. When Feldman looks at innovative nonprofits, several traits come to mind:
- They find creative solutions.
- They are not afraid to fail.
- They know when to pivot.
Read more about the traits that set innovative nonprofits apart from all the rest here.
If You Say You're Innovative, You're Probably Not, May 3, 2012, Foundation Center-Philantopic, by Derrick Feldman
5 / 18 / 2012
3 Ways to Inspire Action at Your Next Big Event
Spring event season is in full swing! Whether you're hosting a golf tournament, gala or auction, it's important to plan ...
- Live testimonial: Who has your organization touched? What lives have you changed? Invite that person to share a personal story about how their lives have improved because of your organization - this is your most powerful spokesperson.
- An inside look: Ask your executive director or someone on your board to share what changes previous supporters have made possible and how your current work will impact the community. Let attendees know that they are a key part of this change.
- An invitation to do more: Don't forget to give attendees the opportunity to take action. Invite supporters to join your volunteer team. Ask attendees to share their email addresses on a sign-up sheet so they can receive updates on your work and upcoming events. Your supporters will be inspired and ready to do more, so don't forget to turn that motivation into action at your event!
3 Ways to Inspire Action at Your Next Big Event, May 3, 2012, Network for Good
5 / 18 / 2012
10 Great Social Innovation Reads: April 2012
The month of April in social innovation was all about change. From a changing landscape between nonprofits and public po...
Click here to learn view Nell Edgington's, President of Social Velocity, ten picks of the best reads in social innovation in April.
10 Great Social Innovation Reads: April 2012, May 8, 2012, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
5 / 11 / 2012
Donors Who Give Through Multiple Channels Give the Most
Nonprofits have known for some time that an integrated multi-channel approach to constituent engagement is key to being ...
With the study's findings, nonprofits can now more confidently say that nonprofits need to adapt to in the way they both engage externally with their supporters as well as organize their efforts internally. Integration on both fronts is imperative.
The study takes a deep dive into the metrics associated with a multi-channel marketing program at CARE USA - particularly the relationship between traditional direct mail and digital channels (also referred to in the study as offline and online). Further it explores the quantification surrounding the relative financial value of different engagement approaches e.g. dual channel vs. single channel communications.
The central finding from the study is that dual channel donors give the most. On average, dual channel donors give $123.29 annually; this is 46 percent more value to a nonprofit than direct mail only donors.
Read the entire article to learn more about donors who give through multiple channels.
Donors Who Give Through Multiple Channels Give the Most, April 20, 2012, Beth's Blog, by Dennis McCarthy
5 / 11 / 2012
Tools to Build a Stronger Nonprofit Sector
A little over a year ago Nell Edgington, President of Social Velocity started introducing tools on the Social Velocity w...
Edgington started Social Velocity almost four years ago because she saw a real hole in the nonprofit sector. Small and medium nonprofits working on social change lacked access to expertise and resources to strengthen and grow their solutions. The Teach for Americas of the world were building impressive organizations and replicating their solution far and wide. But they were doing so with the help of deep networks of experts and money. They were the lucky ones.
But there are equally impressive solutions housed in much smaller, less resourced nonprofit organizations that aren't really seeing the light of day. Because these organizations don't know how to put a growth plan together, figure out how to finance the impact they want to have, or create a compelling ask for money to build, their solutions are not reaching as far as they could.
Social Velocity exists to help those small and medium-size nonprofits who want to be entrepreneurial, grow their programs, get their board engaged and invested, raise money to build their organization, break out of the starvation cycle.
And there are some nonprofits that are so small or so new that they aren't ready yet for a customized solution. So Social Velocity's tools are there to help them start creating momentum on their own.
Read more about the tools Social Velocity has to offer nonprofits of all sizes.
Tools to Build a Stronger Nonprofit Sector, April 27, 2012, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
5 / 11 / 2012
10 Things You're Doing Wrong With Social Media
You're on social media-maybe Facebook, Twitter or your organization's blog-and you're having some success, but you know ...
1. Not telling people you're on social media.
2. Not integrating social media with your communications mix.
3. Not integrating social media with your website to get people to take action.
4. You're not thinking about the channel you're using.
5. Posting inconsistently.
6. It's all about you-and you're not very interesting.
7. Making it "antisocial" media.
8. Posts are disconnected from your mission.
9. Not respecting people's privacy.
10. Continuing to do things that aren't working.
Rules are meant to be broken. Social media has rules, both formal and informal, and following them can help you make the most of these sites and all they have to offer your organization. Remember, though, that it's okay to break rules from time to time-as long as you have a compelling reason to do so. Use common sense. Think about the practices that annoy you when other people or organizations do them, and think about those that you like. Find a way to make the ones that resonate work for you. You're bound to make a few missteps-everyone does-but with a little consideration and thought, you can learn from them and improve your organization's message.
Read the remainder of the article to learn more about the 10 mistakes you can turn around with little effort for quick, improved results.
10 Things You're Doing Wrong With Social Media, April 2012, Idealware, by Chris Bernard
5 / 11 / 2012
Priming Your Board for Fundraising
When nonprofits think about having a strong fundraising board it can be tempting to think about filling your board with ...
Too often, eager to fill a vacant seat or secure a well-known name, nonprofits fail to clearly articulate expectations of service to prospective board members, or downplay the expectations of service.
"There is no question that orienting new board members to their responsibilities, especially around fundraising, is critical," says Linda Crompton, BoardSource President and CEO. "In our 2010 Nonprofit Governance Index, BoardSource found that 90% of the boards with a structured orientation process were rated as effective, compared to only 67% of the boards without such a process."
In addition to a job description, prospective board members should receive a board manual and board contract to help them understand and be successful in their role.
Board members are your most committed volunteers. By providing them with excellent training and clear expectations, you are showing that you value them as exactly that.
Read the entire article to learn more about board job descriptions, manuals and contracts. Visit AJFCA's Resource Library for templates.
Priming Your Board for Fundraising, April 26, 2012, Connection Cafe, by Rachel Muir
5 / 11 / 2012
What Every CEO Needs to Know About HR
If you ask a CEO "What does your HR leader do?" he or she is likely to say: "You got me. I jusbusinesswee...
It's every HR chief's highest calling to make sure his or her employer has the most excited, switched-on, and capable people on the market. Read about the 10 things your HR head should be doing right now in the remainder of this article.
What Every CEO Needs to Know About HR, April 25, 2012, businessweek.com, by Liz Ryan
5 / 11 / 2012
Trust the Curators
If you do anything professionally related to online technology, you understand the immense amount of data you need to so...
Trusting the curators was a strategy Askanase employed to begin to figure out what to read, what she needed to read, and what others that she trusted thought was important to read. We cannot read it all. We cannot begin to imagine trying to read it all. We must trust to the curators.
There are many curatorial platforms. What's important is to find what works for you, and why. What's your curatorial strategy?
Read the entire article to learn more about Askanase's favorite curatorial platforms.
Trust the Curators, April 24, 2012, eJP, by Debra Askanase
5 / 4 / 2012
Let's Get Personal: The Professional - Volunteer Relationship
Have you thought about the nature of your relationship with your volunteer leaders, board members and donors? You see th...
Learn more about the relationship between professionals and volunteers here.
Let's Get Personal: The Professional - Volunteer Relationship, April 25, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
5 / 4 / 2012
3 Online Traffic Measures All Nonprofits Should Track
A fact sheet featured on Food & Water Watch. The organization tracks what people download to see what draws attentio...
Nonprofits can gather expansive amounts of information about their online visitors by using free programs like Google Analytics. But how much of this information is really important-especially for groups that have limited time to track and analyze data about viewers?chronicle philanthropy
Joanna Miles, online campaign organizer at Food & Water Watch, an advocacy group, says nonprofit leaders should be selective about what they track. "If we're never going to use that data, I don't want to track it," she says. "Otherwise, it's just more noise in our content reports."
For nonprofits that use Google Analytics, Miles recommends they use a tool called Goals, which can track how many views a particular page gets, how long someone spends on the page, and how many pages on a Web site each person visits.
Outbound links and inbound referrers
The thank-you page
For nonprofits dealing with the "balancing act" of how much data to log, Miles stresses the importance of having clear objectives. For her organization, she says, "We care about people donating, signing up for newsletters, and taking action. Figure out what's important to you on your site, and have something in place to track it."
Read more about the 3 Online Traffic Measures All Nonprofits Should Track here.
3 Online Traffic Measures All Nonprofits Should Track, April 19, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Derek Lieu
5 / 4 / 2012
Nonprofits Need to Get it Together
A lot of nonprofits, boards and funders are in serious denial. Many are in a deep financial hole, yet precious few can t...
Those are some of the findings from a new survey by the Nonprofit Finance Fund that offers a grim view of the way nonprofits are faring in the stricken economy. Among over 4,600 nonprofits surveyed, for example, 85 percent saw rising demand for services in ejp full logo2011, 88 percent expect greater demand this year, and 57 percent have only enough cash on hand to last three months or less. Among human-services organizations, which represent 38 percent of nonprofits surveyed, 58 percent could not meet demand in 2011, and 60 percent said they would not be able to meet demand in 2012.
The charitable marketplace is consumed with big talk about the need for transparency, yet many nonprofits, along with their boards and their funders, operate with their heads in the sand.
Nonprofits' survival depends on their ability and willingness to communicate more honestly and openly with their funders, while educating their boards about their finances and enlisting them in the fundamental job of fundraising.
Read the remainder of the article here.
Nonprofits Need to Get it Together, April 24, 2012 by eJP, by Todd Cohen
5 / 4 / 2012
4 Ways To Create Brand Content People Actually Care About
People sing the praises of brands that appear to effortlessly lead the social conversation--Tom's Shoes, Virgin America,...
The numbers game (fans, followers, traffic, sign-ups, sales) will always fail as long as we fail to connect to what the customer cares about: footwear that makes a difference, a travel experience that makes flying fun, fresh food and great music. Marketing strategies will maintain their mediocre successes as long as we keep expecting engagement and loyalty from our customers without giving them the same consideration. However, by investing time and resources to develop great gobs of gorgeous content with compelling, interesting messages worth sharing, the scales will tip, the pendulum will swing.
Whether your goal is to galvanize public awareness around an important social issue or showcase new spring denim colors, aim to deliver relevant, sharable content for your customer across multiple touch points that connect to their life moments.
Here are some considerations when introducing strategic content strategy into the mix:
Start with what you already have.
Let the social conversation lead.
Abide by your customer's to-do list.
Make transmedia your best friend.
Learn more about Norick's considerations here.
4 Ways To Create Brand Content People Actually Care About, April 17, 2012, Fast Company, by Expert Blogger Crosby Noricks
5 / 4 / 2012
New Study Examines Long-Term Care Insurance Claims - Largest Claims Reaches $1.7 Million Mark - Women Represent Two-Thirds Of Claimants
The largest open long-term care insurance claim has reached $1.7 million in paid benefits, according to a just-released ...
The claimant, a woman, purchased coverage at age 43, paying an annual premium of $881. Three years later her long term care insurance claim began and has continued for almost 15 years. [Note: Payment of policy premiums ceases when an individual is receiving policy benefits.]
"Insurers paid some $6.6 billion in benefits to roughly 200,000 individuals last year," explains Jesse Slome, Executive Director of the industry trade group that compiled the data from 10 leading long term care insurers. "Long-term care insurance claims can last for years and amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars."
"Long-term care insurance is not the lottery," Slome says. "A policy holder who paid $3,000 in premiums and received benefits exceeding $1.5 million is not a winner. But having this protection in place can certainly pay off and for thousands of Americans it increasingly is." According to the Association, just over 8 million Americans currently have some form of long-term care insurance protection in place.
One in 10 (10.4%) of new individual claims initiated during 2011 began before the claimant was age 70 the study revealed. "While most long-term care insurance claims begin at older ages, typically in ones late 70s or 80s, accidents and illnesses are also a common reason younger people need this care for extended periods," Slome notes.
Read the entire article here.
New Study Examines Long-Term Care Insurance Claims, April 26, 2012, Insurance Broadcasting
5 / 4 / 2012
Why Creativity is the Underestimated Superpower of the Nonprofit World
Creativity is an under-celebrated superpower. You hear a lot in nonprofit circles about the importance of telling storie...
Lately, Avi Kaplan, care2's blogger has been thinking a lot about creativity and the ways organizations can show personality. You don't often hear creativity singled out as a key thing to focus on, but if you bring creativity into your way of doing things success will flow.
If you want people to take action to advance your mission you will need them to feel emotionally invested in your work. You don't invest your heart in that way for things that are boring.
The problem is we underestimate our creativity. You may be thinking to yourself that your organization's personality isn't all that awesome. You're all about impact, and data, and showing results. Your wonky. You're serious. You're corporate. Funders expect you to be professional and effective, not awesome! Nonsense. Whatever your personality and brand, if you're creative, you can show your awesome personality and ensure your community can connect to your mission emotionally.
Read the entire article to learn the 22 Creative Ways to Show Your Nonprofit's Personality.
Why Creativity is the Underestimated Superpower of the Nonprofit World, April 12, 2012, frogloop, by Avi Kaplan
5 / 4 / 2012
Peter F. Drucker Award for Nonprofit Innovation
Every year about this time, The Drucker Institute, Claremont Graduate University feels an extra compulsion to ask: What ...
The prod comes from The Drucker Institute's call for applications for the $100,000 Peter F. Drucker Award for Nonprofit Innovation. Given every year since 1991, the award recognizes social-sector programs that, in Drucker's words, deliver "a new dimension of performance."
The 700 or so submissions that The Drucker Institute receives annually reminds them how important it is to hold them to that same standard. In fact, they've even been applying it to the award itself.
What began as a humdrum questionnaire for selecting the winning organizations has now become a powerful teaching tool. Here's how the Drucker Institute approached the reinvention of the application process, hewing to three of Drucker do's and don'ts for innovation:
Successful innovators get out into the field, look at the market and talk to customers.
To be effective, an innovation has to be simple, and it has to be focused.
Measure innovative performance.
Where does the award process go from here? The Drucker Institute is not entirely sure, but they do know this: The worst thing they could do is rest on their success. Innovation, as Drucker saw it, is nothing less than "constant renewal."
4 / 27 / 2012
Contemplating a Future Without Holocaust Survivors
Planning for a time when survivors are no longer alive, some focus on preserving the literal memory of the Holocaust as ...
As the number of Holocaust survivors able to give direct testimony about their horrific experiences during World War II is dropping precipitously, the Jewish community is seriously considering how the Holocaust narrative may adjust to a future where noejp full logo eyewitnesses remain.
According to Hillary Kessler-Godin of the Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany, about 500,000 survivors remain alive worldwide. The Holocaust Survivors Assistant Act of 2011 estimated that about 127,000 survivors were still alive in the United States, and Dr. Paul Winkler, executive director of the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education, suggests that over the past six or seven years the number of survivors in New Jersey has decreased from 5,000 to about 2,000.
Speaking to these demographic realities, Dr. Jonathan Sarna, professor of American Jewish history at Brandeis University, says, "As I tell my students, they are really the last generation that will be able to say they personally knew individuals who experienced the Shoah."
April 18th marked this year's Holocaust Remembrance Day, known as "Yom HaShoah" in Israel. As scholars and educators consider a future without survivors, some focus on preserving the literal memory of the Holocaust as both a sacred obligation to the victims and an educational tool for ensuring "never again." Others suggest that more effective ways to remember the tragedy will be new ritualized commemorations and even Holocaust fiction.
Contemplating a Future Without Holocaust Survivors, April 18, 2012, eJP, by Michele Alperin
4 / 27 / 2012
How to Raise Money to Strengthen Your Nonprofit
There is a revolutionary concept that could dramatically transform the nonprofit sector, if only every nonprofit leader ...
Capacity capital is the money that every nonprofit needs, but most find so hard to raise. Capacity capital can help your nonprofit to:
Hire a development director
Launch an earned-income stream
Expand your programs
Evaluate your impact
Train your staff
It is money for infrastructure and organization building. If you want to move your organization out of the starvation cycle, you have to learn how to raise capacity capital.
It's incredibly powerful to think about the implications of this concept for the entire nonprofit sector. If a nonprofit that provides a solution to a social problem was no longer impeded by a lack of capital, it could be revolutionary.
How to Raise Money to Strengthen Your Nonprofit, April 16, 2012, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
4 / 27 / 2012
Transparency is the New Leadership Imperative
According to Dorie Clark, a strategy consultant and author of the forthcoming Reinventing You: Define Your Brand, Imagin...
To know you is to love you.
Transparency is brand insurance.
You attract like-minded talent.
Whether it's in person (through speeches, meetings, or one-on-one interactions) or leveraging social media, it's more essential than ever for leaders to embrace transparency. Employees, customers, and shareholders need to understand your vision, your values, and your approach. That doesn't mean putting on an aura of mystique, because if it's not coming naturally, people can see through it. Instead, the new leadership imperative is to make yourself known.
Read the entire article to learn more about importance of transparency among new leaders.
Transparency is the New Leadership Imperative, April 11, 2012, Harvard Business Review Blog Network, by Dorie Clark
4 / 20 / 2012
#12NTCJews Talk Networks and Nonprofits
Blogger Deborah Fishman must admit that she doesn't go to very many conferences that aren't "Jewish." But in t...
Why Jewish pride? The focus on how Jewish organizations are making an impact in this realm was impressive to many - especially those who don't usually equate Jewish organizations as being at or even near the forefront of the technological cutting-edge. Fishman gives a lot of credit to the session sponsors, in particular Lisa Colton, the session facilitator, for recognizing the need to demonstrate how Jewish organizations are thinking about technology and networks, even fostering that energy beyond the session by using the hashtag #12ntcJews for the conference's duration.
Read the entire article to learn more about the Nonprofit Technology Conference.
#12NTCJews Talk Networks and Nonprofits, April 15, 2012, by eJP, by Deborah Fishman
4 / 20 / 2012
Exploring the Dimensions of the Nonprofit Leader
Despite increasing strategic crossover between the for-profit and nonprofit sectors, public sector nonprofit governance ...
Exploring the Dimensions of the Nonprofit Leader, October 2009, Philadelphia Innovations Social Journal, by Anne Saporito
4 / 20 / 2012
Five Steps for Winning Conversations with Donors
Laura Fredricks, a fundraising consultant, says she has noticed a disturbing trend. Too often fundraisers use the same f...
That practice wastes time and ensures poor results, she said at the Association of Fundraising Professionals conference, which opened last Sunday in Vancouver.
Conversations with donors are too important to use a standard template, Ms. Fredricks said. A guarantee that fundraisers are doing the right thing: They should be a little nervous every time. Otherwise, it's a sign they are coasting.
She offered her five steps to improving conversations with donors:
1. Know exactly what you want.
2. Prepare the conversation.
3. Deliver with confidence.
4. Clarify your results.
5. Plan the next move.
Read the entire article to learn about the five steps to improving conversations with donors in more detail.
Five Steps for Winning Conversations with Donors, April 1, 2012, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Cody Switzer
4 / 20 / 2012
The 2012 Prudboard sourceential Leadership Awards for Exceptional Nonprofit Boards
In recognition of the critical role that boards play in overseeing their organizations' missions, finances, and strategi...
Presented as part of the 2012 BoardSource Leadership Forum (Hyatt Regency Chicago, September 14th & 15th), the awards include:
$25,000 Grand Prize
$10,000 Second-Place Prize
$5,000 Third-Place Prize
Two $2,500 Honorable Mentions
The application deadline is June 1, 2012. Learn more here.
4 / 20 / 2012
Volunteers Give 10x the Dollars
"As it happens, a lot of our volunteers are donors," says Dora Chan. And she should know - she's what colleagu...
Well, for one thing, could your team answer this: "To what extent does our own volunteer list overlap with our donor list?" Would it be a major time-sink to go compare two or more lists? Is it possible there's a population where you could be raising 10x what you're raising now??
Read more to learn about volunteer giving.
Volunteers Give 10x the Dollars, April 10, 2012, Cafe Connection, by Jennifer Darrouzet
4 / 12 / 2012
The Cost of High Turnover in Fundraising Jobs
The high turnover rate of fundraisers is costing charities money. Lots of money.The average amount of time a fundraiser ...
The average amount of time a fundraiser stays at his or her job: 16 months. The direct and indirect costs of finding a replacement: $127,650.
Those figures come from new research by Penelope Burk, president of Cygnus Applied Research. In her presentation at the Association of Fundraising Professionals conference in Vancouver, she said findings from a survey she has conducted of 1,700 fundraisers and 8,000 nonprofit chief executives, suggest that it would cost just $46,650 to keep a good fundraiser happy by providing better salaries and other benefits, such as additional vacation time.
The study is expected to be released this fall.
Learn more about the challenges JFCS experiences in trying to improve retention of direct service professionals at the AJFCA Annual Conference.
The Cost of High Turnover in Fundraising Jobs, April 2, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Raymund Flandez
4 / 12 / 2012
What Are Nonprofits Doing with Social Media? Six Interesting Stats
It's the week of studies! First there was the eBenchmarks study, then the Convio benchmarks study, and now the&nbs...
The Blackbaud study shows despite limited budgets and staffing, nonprofits continue to find value in their growing social networks. Here are six key findings:
- 98% have a Facebook page with an average community size of over 8k fans.
- Average Facebook and Twitter communities grew by 30% and 81%, respectively.
- Average value of a Facebook Like is $214.81 over 12 months following acquisition.
- 73% allocate half of a full time employee to managing social networking activities.
- 43% budget $0 for their social networking activities.
- The top 3 factors for success are: strategy, prioritization, dedicated staff
4 / 12 / 2012
12 Incredibly Useful Digital Tools for PR
What are the key social media tools that PR professionals need to go from bumbling amateur to results-driven superstar? ...
1. Google Analytics
2. Google Insights for Search
3. Google Keywords Tool
6. Facebook Insights
7. YouTube Analytics
8. Google Alerts
Of course, no such list, whether it has 12 or 12,000 entries, is definitive. What is your favorite tool? Read the entire article to learn about these 12 tools in more detail.
12 Incredibly Useful Digital Tools for PR, April 4, 2012, PR Daily, by Mark Pack
4 / 6 / 2012
7 Tips and Cheat Sheets to Help You Implement the New Timeline
If you are an administrator for your organization's Facebook page, you've no doubt noticed that Facebook switched over a...
Some nonprofits were early adopters while others are exploring and testing and fixing glitches or simply checking out the new features, like the administrator's dashboard.
Recommendations on optimizing your new Timeline:
1. Strategy and work flow.
2. Take the tour.
3. Bye bye default landing tabs.
4. Profile and cover images.
5. Administrative dashboard.
6. Private messaging to administrators.
7. Prepare for your launch.
Read 7 Tips and Cheat Sheets to Help You Implement the New Timeline for more detailed recommendations on optimizing your new Timeline.
7 Tips and Cheat Sheets to Help You Implement the New Timeline, March 30, 2012, eJP, by Beth Kanter
4 / 6 / 2012
DocuSign and E-Signatures
Did you know 8 out of 10 documents are now signed in the cloud with DocuSign? E-signatures are changing the way we do bu...
As you evaluate providers, perhaps you will find this recent Forrester whitepaper, What To Look for in E-Signature Providers, interesting.
Finding the right e-signature provider can be difficult. If you would like additional information about how DocuSign can help you gain the freedom to do business anywhere, contact Rebecca McKee, DocuSign Account Representative, 206-876-6749.
4 / 6 / 2012
When should brands tweet for the greatest reach?
We want pr daily logopeople to notice our tweets-to read and retweet them-whether they come from a personal Twitter acco...
Time of day
According to data compiled by the marketing firm Lemon.ly , the most traffic on Twitter occurs from 9am-11am ET and 1pm-3pm ET. Research from HubSpot's Dan Zarrella found that the best time to tweet is 5pm ET.
The takeaway: Spread your tweets out throughout the day with an emphasis on late afternoon.
KISSMetrics pulled data compiled by Zarrella to show the breakdown of tweets in the United States:
* 48% of tweets are from the East Coast;
* 33% of tweets are from the Central time zone; twitter
* 14% are from the West Coast.
* Nearly 80% of the U.S. population is located in the Central and Eastern Time zones.
The takeaway: Think East Coast time.
Day of the week
According to Zarrella's report "How to Get More Clicks on Twitter," your Twitter links will get the most attention from your followers toward the end of the week and on weekends.
The takeaway: Don't forget Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Read the entire article to learn about timing and tailoring your tweeting schedule to reach the greatest number of followers.
When should brands tweet for the greatest reach? March 27, 2012, PR Daily, by Matthew Royse
4 / 6 / 2012
8 Best Conference Practices
Attending conferences is one of blogger, Lauren Gray's favorite things to do. Think that sounds lame? It isn't! She love...
1. Network before the conference
2. Bring your business cards
3. Know where you are going, research!
4. Get to know other people, not your friends.
5. Take advantage of your time there.
6. Attend different types of sessions.
7. Follow up!
8. Put what you learned into practice.
Read the entire article to learn about the 8 best conference practices in more detail.
8 Best Conference Practices, June 10, 2011, EpicLaunch, by Lauren K. Gray
3 / 30 / 2012
6 Habits of True Strategic Thinkers
You're the boss, but you still spend too much time on the day-to-day. Here's how to become the strategic leader your org...
If you find yourself resisting "being strategic," because it sounds like a fast track to irrelevance, or vaguely like an excuse to slack off, you're not alone. Every leader's temptation is to deal with what's directly in front, because it always seems more urgent and concrete. Unfortunately, if you do that, you put your organization at risk. While you concentrate on steering around potholes, you'll miss windfall opportunities, not to mention any signals that the road you're on is leading off a cliff.
This is a tough job, make no mistake. "We need strategic leaders!" is a pretty constant refrain at every agency, large and small. One reason the job is so tough: no one really understands what it entails. It's hard to be a strategic leader if you don't know what strategic leaders are supposed to do.
Adaptive strategic leaders - the kind who thrive in today's uncertain environment - do six things well:
- Think Critically
6 Habits of True Strategic Thinkers, March 20, 2012, Inc. (LinkedIn), by Paul J. H. Schoemaker
3 / 30 / 2012
The Challenge of Recruiting and Training Volunteer Solicitors
Nonprofit organizations thrive when their fundraising campaigns are made up of knowledgeable, skillful, personable and e...
Yes, it is true that there are some people who are "natural fundraisers" and they have the ability to engage with potential contributors and contributors. They understand the meaning of "engaging" someone in a conversation that is focused on the other person's interests. During the course of the exchange, the skillful solicitor makes a connection between what is important to the contributor and the mission, purpose and services of the nonprofit organization.
Read the entire article to learn about the challenges organizations face when recruiting and training new people who will become an effective cadre of volunteer solicitors.
The Challenge of Recruiting and Training Volunteer Solicitors, March 21, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
3 / 30 / 2012
Real Innovation in Social Change Lies in Reinvention
"Innovation" has become such a buzzword lately, particularly among people working on social change. But let's ...
The nonprofit world has never lacked new ideas to address problems. In fact, you could argue that nonprofits are innately entrepreneurial, being borne out of a recognized market failing and a new idea to remedy it.
The need, then, is not more new ideas. Rather, true innovation lies in reinventing a field built on social change. Here are some ways that is starting to happen:
- New support mechanisms.
- A converging economy.
- Proof of social change.
- The best and the brightest of Generation Y worked to remake existing organizations from the inside out instead of just starting their own social-change groups?
- The social-capital market that's emerging to provide financial vehicles for budding social businesses also included support for social entrepreneurs in the nonprofit world?
- Venture-philanthropy funds (growth capital for nonprofits) shared investor prospects with social-venture funds (growth capital for social businesses) and vice versa?
- All nonprofits interested in growth and with a proven model for success had access to enough capital and management expertise to expand?
- A nonprofit that solves social problems received as many resources and as much respect and attention as a business that solves a consumer need?
Check out Nell's sessions at AJFCA's 40th Annual Conference: Engaging Your Board in Fundraising and Financing Not Fundraising.
Real Innovation in Social Change Lies in Reinvention, March 23, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Nell Edgington
3 / 30 / 2012
The State of the Nonprofit Cloud
Idealware and The Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN) recently released a 35-page report called The State of the Nonprof...
3 / 30 / 2012
Dead or Alive? What Do Your Board's Vital Signs Tell You?
When was the last time your board members had a checkup? No, we're not talking about strapping on blood pressure cuffs! ...
While most boards don't assess their performance annually, the HeathPoint board in Renton, Washington, can't imagine doing it less frequently. It has institutionalized the practice of assessing the board's performance in conjunction with assessing the chief executive's performance. It believes that one assessment informs the other, and when the results are reviewed back to back, they enable the board to identify and prioritize those issues most in need of attention. The results serve as springboards for board and chief executive improvement or set the stage for strategic planning.
Learn more now.
Assessment of the Chief Executive
Diversity in Action Assessment
Dead or alive? What do your board's vital signs tell you?, March 20, 2012, Board Source
3 / 30 / 2012
Why Nonprofits Should Love Pinterest
Pinterest holds an enormous opportunity for nonprofits. Pinterest is a social media network based on images. If you find...
Nell Edgington has 12 "boards". Some are not work-related like "Home" and "Healthy Recipes." But the rest are directly related to Social Velocity and her passion for social innovation and the nonprofit sector, like "Nonprofit/Social Change Books," "Nonprofit Campaigns," "Cool Infographics," and "Nonprofit Media." That last board is actually a shared board among 40+ people and organizations where all can add to and edit the board.
There have been many articles about the potential of Pinterest for companies. People can pin images of particular products and encourage their friends and followers to purchase. Pinterest is a particularly powerful opportunity for nonprofits for several reasons:
- Nonprofits are naturally image-based.
- Nonprofits easily connect to passion.
- Female donors are a large and growing force.
- Nonprofits are all about good story-telling.
Read Nell's blog here to learn more about the reason's she feels Pinterest in a particularly powerful tool for nonprofits.
Why I Love Pinterest and Nonprofits Should Too, March 21, 2012, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
3 / 23 / 2012
How Nonprofits Can Thrive While Awaiting Economic Recovery
After 3+ years of a difficult recession it looks like the economy might be starting to turn around. That's great news. B...
There are some key things nonprofit leaders can do to create a sustainable financial model in the midst of lingering economic uncertainty:
- Take a Step Back
- Harness Your Board
- Create a Plan
- Reallocate Resources
- Use Technology
- Learn from the Best
- Strengthen Your Case
- Clone Your Best Donors
- Diversify Your Funds
Check out Nell's sessions: Engaging Your Board in Fundraising and Financing Not Fundraising, at AJFCA's 40th Annual Conference.
How Nonprofits Can Thrive While Awaiting Economic Recovery, Social Velocity, by Nell Edgington
3 / 23 / 2012
Unleashing Innovation: Using Everyday Technology to Improve Nonprofit Services
Can nonprofits take better advantage of available technologies to improve the services they deliver and the ways in whic...
Idealware, (one of AJFCA's partner agencies) thinks they can - and today they are releasing a report that marks the culmination of nearly a year's worth of research into that question. Unleashing Innovation: Using Everyday Technology to Improve Nonprofit Services is available as a free download from the MAP for Nonprofits website.
MAP for Nonprofits, which provides management consulting and services and board development aid to Minnesota nonprofits, hired Idealware to conduct a detailed survey of Minnesota human service organizations about how they were using technology and then interview more than two dozen staff members from organizations that were using it in effective or interesting ways.
The research reveals a number of innovative approaches to service delivery that make the most of new and existing technology. From the simple and remarkable to the complex and expensive, these implementations serve as examples of opportunities for everyday innovation that can transform how, and how effectively, organizations meet their missions.
The result of the collective efforts, Unleashing Innovation: Using Everyday Technology to Improve Nonprofit Services, includes a detailed analysis of the survey data and case studies of nine Minnesota nonprofits using technology successfully. Idealware believes every organization can learn from these examples and they are excited to share these results. Download the report now for free at http://tinyurl.com/7sqmv4s.
Unleashing Innovation: Using Everyday Technology to Improve Nonprofit Services, Idealware, by Laura Quinn
3 / 23 / 2012
The Magic of Doing One Thing at a Time
Why is it that between 25% and 50% of people report feeling overwhelmed or burned out at work? It's not just the number ...
What people have lost, above all, are stopping points, finish lines and boundaries. Technology has blurred them beyond recognition. Wherever people go, work follows, on digital devices, ever insistent and intrusive. It's like an itch that one can't resist scratching, even though scratching invariably makes it worse.
Tell the truth: Do you answer email during conference calls (and sometimes even during calls with one other person)? Do you bring your laptop to meetings and then pretend you're taking notes while you surf the net? Do you eat lunch at your desk? Do you make calls while you're driving, and even send the occasional text, even though you know you shouldn't?
The biggest cost - assuming one doesn't crash - is to productivity. In part, that's a simple consequence of splitting one's attention, so that one is partially engaged in multiple activities but rarely fully engaged in any one. In part, it's because when one switches away from a primary task to do something else, one increases the time it takes to finish that task by an average of 25 per cent.
Read the entire article to learn about the three policies worth promoting and the boundaries individuals should set for themselves.
The Magic of Doing One Thing at a Time, March 14, 2012, LinkedIn, by Tony Schwartz
3 / 23 / 2012
Blog Tips to Boost Your Web Traffic
Did you know that there are over 156 million public blogs, according to Wikipedia. That's a lot of competition for all y...
- Target Audience
- Get to the Point
- Be Compelling
- Make it Scannable
- Fresh and Relevant Content
- Calls to Action
- When to Post
- Generating Comments
- Public Comments
- Promote Posts
- Grammar and Spell Check
Blog Tips to Boost Your Web Traffic, February 29, 2012, Frogloop, by Allyson Kapin
3 / 16 / 2012
A Look at Jewish Foundation Giving
The Institute for Jewish and Community Research has released FOLLOWING THE MONEY: A Look at Jewish Foundation Giving, a ...
The data reveals that perhaps the most important decision private foundations have made is to continue to provide significant support toward traditional centralized organizations while also seeding innovative Jewish projects and organizations. This "and/both" instead of "either/or" approach provides the Jewish community with support for core programs while maintaining the ability to research and develop new programs that meet contemporary needs.
Read the entire article to learn the major findings. FOLLOWING THE MONEY: A Look at Jewish Foundation Giving, is available for download. The complete study will be available later in 2012.
A Look at Jewish Foundation Giving, March 11, 2012, eJP
3 / 16 / 2012
What Nonprofits Should Know About Pinterest
More than 1,700 people joined The Chronicle of Philanthropy on Tuesday, February 28th for a discussion about the social ...
Because the network has been such a hot topic in recent weeks, the Chronicle of Philanthropy decided to answer some questions that they ran out of time to cover in the Tuesday discussion, summarizing a few of the basics.
The complete transcript of the live discussion is available. Read the entire article to learn more about Pinterest.
What Nonprofits Should Know About Pinterest, March 5, 2012, Chronicle of Philanthropy, by Cody Switzer
3 / 16 / 2012
The Mobile Frontier - FREE Webcast
In early March, Convio presented, The Mobile Frontier: Where, When and How to Use Mobile for Your Mission webinar, which...
The webinar is now available FREE On-Demand. Watch at your convenience and from the comfort of your desk. During the webcast you'll hear from Katya Andresen, Chief Strategy Officer of Network for Good, on how to determine if mobile is right for your organization and how to consider using mobile in your mix. During the webcast Katya speaks about:
- Beyond text-to-give - what is mobile
- Ways to add mobile to the mix
- How to get buy-in and quantify results
3 / 12 / 2012
AJFCA Board Determines to Move Ahead with 2013 Conference in Arizona
AJFCA’s 2013 Annual Conference is scheduled for May 19-21, 2013 at the Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix. AJFCA&rs...
While many organizations have considered boycotting the State of Arizona, most have lifted or not adopted such boycotts because of the financial losses that would be sustained by, not only businesses and policy makers, but the Hispanic community and other Arizona residents—the very people being attacked by the ill-advised legislation.
On March 7, 2012, the AJFCA board of directors met by conference call to determine our strategy. The board gave serious consideration to this important issue and determined the following solution in accordance with our mission and values:
AJFCA has determined to move forward and hold our 2013 Annual Conference in Phoenix with a conference theme of social justice. We are looking forward to utilizing our conference to highlight the essential responsibility of the Jewish family service movement to support human rights and personal dignity throughout our communities. We intend to incorporate the activism taking place in Phoenix against the legislation into our conference. We believe that this solution will provide the AJFCA network with a true learning experience and a simultaneous opportunity to help influence the policies by which those in need are served. In the face of a policy that seeks to marginalize certain minority groups, we will display our message and belief that communities find strength in unity. It is a foundation of Judaism that each of us has an obligation to create justice in the world. AJFCA’s collective response will provide a vehicle for all in our network to meet this obligation in a way that can be heard throughout Arizona and beyond.
3 / 9 / 2012
Free Web Resource to Aid Agencies in Performance Management
Social Solutions, Urban Institute and Child Trends have collectively launched a free web resource, PerformWell, designed...
3 / 9 / 2012
Facebook Timeline for Nonprofit Organizations
The social media revolution means big things for nonprofits. Social media demands a kind of openness and authenticity th...
Rebecca Saidlower, Associate Director of Marketing and Communications and Miriam Brosseau, Social Media Manager for The Jewish Education Project explain a few ways you can take advantage of your Page's new Timeline:
Document the history of your organization since way back before Facebook.
Make major events and accomplishments in recent years stand out from your Facebook chatter.
Choose a cover photo that represents your organization's mission. Before, most Pages had
Pin important news items to the top of your Page.
Take advantage of Facebook's apps and tools!
Read the entire article to learn more about the opportunities Facebook Timeline for Pages has to offer.
Facebook Timeline for Nonprofit Organizations, March 4, 2012, eJP, by Rebecca Saidlower and Miriam Brosseau
3 / 9 / 2012
The Staff Workshop: Striving for Success
Several clients requested Stephen G. Donshik, D.S.W., a lecturer at Hebrew University's International Nonprofit Manageme...
Often the staff of nonprofit organizations feels competing pressures when needing to respond to requests for services and having to implement programs. At times the impact on the staff can be overwhelming. In light of this, the initial enthusiasm a social worker, community worker or teacher has for their job soon becomes lost in the pushes and pulls of a regular work day. When this happens one of the ways of counterbalancing this is to provide an opportunity for the staff to remove themselves from their everyday schedule and take a break to explore the reasons behind their feelings and the lessening of their enthusiasm for work. Providing an opportunity for the staff to get out of the office and to break from their regular schedule can not only be a welcome relief but it can also stimulate them to think in creative ways. This is especially true when they are not watching the clock and trying to complete their tasks for the day.
Read the entire article to learn more about the value of staff workshops.
The Staff Workshop: Striving for Success, March 6, 2012. eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
3 / 9 / 2012
10 Little Known Social Media Tools You Should Be Using - Now
Social media is everywhere. Everywhere you look; people are using social media and are talking about it. And it seems th...
Neil Patel, co-founder of San Francisco-based online analytics provider KISSmetrics shares some suggestions to help you cut through the clutter. Here are the 10 must-use social media tools that can not only help you make sense of your social media efforts but make them more effective.
4. HootSuite for iPad
10. Social Scope
Read the entire article to learn more about these tools and who should use them and why.
10 Little Known Social Media Tools You Should Be Using - Now, February 21, 2012, LinkedIn, by Neil Patel
3 / 2 / 2012
Organizational Memory: When Remembrance Isn't Enough
Many organizations depend on employees to remember decisions that were once made and the implications of those decisions...
Not too long ago Stephen Donshik received a telephone call from "Sarah," an administrative staff person at ABC organization that had leased space to the nonprofit he worked for years ago. Stephen was asked if he remembered principles of the last lease agreement between ABC and the nonprofit that he had directed. Stephen found it quite interesting that no one in the organization he worked for or in ABC had documented the details of the lease agreement. It was fascinating to Stephen that Sarah was calling on him, a former employee, to inquire after six years about the lease agreement.
Learn more about why memory isn't enough. Read the entire article here.
Organizational Memory: When Remembrance Isn't Enough, February 22, 2012, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
3 / 2 / 2012
How to Avoid the Two Killer Mistakes of Fundraising
Nonprofits have to navigate their way between the Scylla and Charybdis of fundraising: The two errors in thinking that c...
1: Hating everything that's been done before
You'd rather do anything than direct mail fundraising. It's just so old hat, so tired. Email, which in marketing terms has yet to come in to its own, and is growing at explosive rates -- to you, it's dead already. Even Facebook is a tired old steam locomotive.
If you think this way, you miss the big opportunities. Because the big ones are the older ones. You're also an easy mark for con-artist consultants who prey on your particular attitude by offering half-baked, exciting-sounding schemes.
2: Needing guaranteed success for everything you do
You can't do a thing unless there's an iron-clad performance pro forma and documented best practices. You're not so much a late adapter as a never adapter.
No innovation is possible if you insist on guarantees. Every successful thing ever done started as a risky, unproven idea. If you never innovate, you find yourself in an ever narrower hole, less and less able to keep growing.
Either extreme is bad. But there's something worse. Some organizations actually embrace both of these destructive tendencies at once.
How to Avoid the Two Killer Mistakes of Fundraising, February 24, 2012, Future Fundraising Now, by Jeff Brooks
3 / 2 / 2012
Flying Horses and Major Gift Fundraising
Jews have been making major gifts to critical Jewish needs way before Flying Horses. It's been consistent; major gift fu...
As Jewish agencies, you are a part of a community. The point is you are not flying off the ledge landing into a sea of names. You are part of a community of people who care regardless of whether you are working for Jewish Day Schools or the Jewish Family Service. You know that to sustain Jewish continuity our agencies and organizations not only have to survive, they have to strive for excellence. That can only happen with quality major gift staff and leadership.
Read the entire article to learn exactly what flying horses and major gift fundraising have in common.
Flying Horses and Major Gift Fundraising, February 28, 2012, eJP, by Sherri W. Morr
2 / 24 / 2012
The Next Generation: What Jewish Organizations are Doing to Cultivate 20-and-30-Somethings
Back in 1950, with the ashes from the massacre of Eastern European Jewry still smoldering and a fledgling State of Israe...
"What kind of American Jewish community do we desire, and how shall we plan to achieve it?" asked Robert Gordis in a Commentary Magazine essay titled, Creating an Organic Community:A Blueprint to Assure American Jewry's Future.
Over 60 years have passed since Gordis wrote those words and though the core question remains the same, the landscape has markedly changed. If in the 50s the common enemy was assimilation, and in the 80s and 90s it was intermarriage and an American society that "welcomed us to death," the 21st century's main offenders are more about what is absent than what is present; namely, the way Israel, community and tradition no longer play central roles for the next generation of young Jews.
Yet, when it comes to the future, everything hinges upon engaging this NextGen, a notoriously fickle and capricious bunch. Learn more about engaging NextGen in this article.
The Next Generation: What Jewish Organizations are Doing to Cultivate 20-and-30-Somethings, February 12, 2012, eJP, by Abigail Pickus
2 / 24 / 2012
Distinguishing a Board's Steering and Rowing Work
As described in the book Governance as Leadership: Reframing the Work of Nonprofit Boards, to govern comprehensively, bo...
When steering, the board collectively: board source
Sets the direction of the organization;
Determines which values and logic will guide it; and
Ensures the organization's resources are used prudently to advance its work.
When rowing, board members individually or collectively expand the organization's resources by, among other things:
Offering pro bono professional services or expertise to management;
Volunteering as front-line service providers;
Advocating for or championing the organization and its mission in the community; and
Helping to raise funds to sustain the organization's work.
It can be useful to distinguish steering and rowing, which you can learn more about in the remainder of this article.
Distinguishing a Board's Steering and Rowing Work, January 30, 2012, Nonprofit Quarterly, Board Source, by William Ryan
2 / 24 / 2012
How to Do More with Mobile Marketing
In a short time, mobile marketing has evolved far beyond text-to-give campaigns. Discover how to increase your "por...
In this guide, There is More to Mobile Marketing, co-authored by Convio and Network for Good, you'll learn:
The variety of mobile marketing approaches
Questions to ask to determine if mobile is right for your organization
Potential benefits and how to use mobile for deeper engagement
How to integrate mobile into your fundraising efforts
View the guide, There is More to Mobile Marketing.
How to Do More with Mobile Marketing, February 18, 2012, Convio
2 / 17 / 2012
Organizing the Board to Support the Revenue Strategy
Instead of focusing only on how board members can raise individual donations (or not!), think more broadly (and effectiv...
Pursuing a new funding stream for which you may not have the right people and competencies already is usually not the best place to start. Instead, Blue Avocado recommends that you see how you can boost and leverage the funding streams and people you already have in place.
Read the entire article to learn more about organizing your board to support your revenue strategy.
Organizing the Board to Support the Revenue Strategy, February 9, 2012, Board Cafe, Blue Avocado, by Jan Masaoka
2 / 17 / 2012
Ten Common Mistakes in Selecting Donor Databases (And How to Avoid Them)
You want a donor database that will provide clean data, solid reports, and happy staff, but the software itself is only ...
Picture two nonprofits-the first has a donor database full of bad data. Donors are getting the wrong receipts, or no receipts at all. The organization cannot use the database to plan fundraising strategies or track its effectiveness. The few reports it can get are useless. Staff members complain that no one trained them, and they get no technical support. For obvious reasons, they hate the system.
The second organization loves its database. The data is clean, donors get timely, accurate mailings, the organization has a good handle on its fundraising activities, and staff get the reports they want. New personnel are trained on the database before they ever log in, and someone on staff helps them resolve any problems and questions that come up.
Both nonprofits are using the same software package. How can this be?
Ten Common Mistakes in Selecting Donor Databases (And How to Avoid Them), Idealware, February 2012, by Robert Weiner
2 / 10 / 2012
AJFCA's Canadian agencies recently participated in a webinar presented by the Tamarack Institute of Waterloo, Ontario, a...
- Think and act like a movement - we can't on our own achieve the kind of impact that we want in terms of reducing poverty, ending homelessness, addressing abuse, etc.
- Convening - learning how to speak and be together, how to be hospitable, how to bring people together so that problem solving comes in a civil and accountable way
- Marrying our social connections and economic power - create opportunities to harness market forces to influence operational practicestamarack
- Disruptive innovation - results from the efforts of "passionate amateurs" who affect change because of their dissatisfaction with the status quo
- Receptive Innovation - harnesses existing systems and infrastructure to assist in the disseminating and scaling-up of innovation
- Mediating Innovation - results from the linking together of formal and informal sources of innovation through collaboration
2 / 10 / 2012
Understanding and Improving Email Deliverability
Neither "snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night" might stay the U.S. Post Office's couriers from delivering...
There are ways to increase your delivery rates when sending out mass mailings, however. You should already be using a broadcast email tool. (If you're not, find out why you should be, and learn about your options, in Idealware's "A Few Good Broadcast Email Tools" article.) These can greatly improve your email's chance of reaching the people on your list, but they're not perfect.
So how can you help ensure people receive the emails you send them? To find out, read the remainder of Understanding and Improving Email Deliverability.
Understanding and Improving Email Deliverability, January 2012, Idealware, by Colin Pizarek and Chris Bernard
2 / 10 / 2012
Steal These 42 Creative Pinterest Ideas for Nonprofits
According to Avi Kaplan, a frogloop blogger, we're about to see Pinterest use among nonprofit organizations explode. Pin...
Pinterest is a new(ish) and growing image based social network and the newest darling of social media marketers. It is always intriguing to see how nonprofits find creative ways to use new social media tools, but no one thought seriously about Pinterest's potential for nonprofits. Now, it's exciting to see how cause communities embrace this emerging network to create value and mission impact.
Part of Pinterest's potential is it's unique demographic user-base of women 25-44, which is what distinguishes Pinterest from other new social media platforms, which are generally populated by men 18-24.
Want to learn more about Pinterest and creative ideas for nonprofits? Read Avi's blog here.
Steal These 42 Creative Pinterest Ideas for Nonprofits, Frogloop, Care2's nonprofit marketing blog, January 13, 2012, by Avi Kaplan
2 / 3 / 2012
State of Violence in the Jewish Community
Despite difficult economic times, Jewish domestic violence organizations remain committed to preventing violence in thei...
According to the survey, 90% of respondents believe their community faces a gap in services, while 47% of respondents report that their funding has decreased in the past year alone. This survey could not be released at a more critical time: This month, as Congress starts drafting the budget for the next fiscal year and lawmakers begin to consider the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2011.
Join JWI's advocacy network to learn more.
2 / 3 / 2012
Workplace Happiness and the Jewish Question
For the past several months, The Chronicle of Philanthropy has reported on a growing and troubling trend - the increasin...
The data on Jewish communal professionals are even more discouraging. Talented young Jews, even those with excellent Jewish educations and sensibilities, are opting for careers in the private sector. Those who have served Jewish organizations are burning out prematurely and opting to leave the field altogether. The resulting brain drain means that many of the best and the brightest in the Jewish world are either not looking seriously at entering the field, or are exiting before ever having the chance to make their mark.
Read what other field experts have to say to learn more about career dissatisfaction and the so-called profit motive.
Workplace Happiness and the Jewish Question, January 5, 2012, eJP,by Hal M. Lewis
2 / 3 / 2012
Software to Support Program Evaluation
Articles, conferences and books have been devoted to the concept and strategies behind evaluating the success of program...
But what parts? And what software? To find out, Idealware talked to a number of nonprofit program evaluation experts to explore the types of systems that can aid with program evaluation, and how they might fit in to the overall process. Idealware learned evaluation requires more than just a software program, but the right software can help.
Click here to learn more about how to define your evaluation process, track constituent data and outcomes, track non-constituent data, and analyze and display measures.
1 / 27 / 2012
Any professional or lay leader of a nonprofit organization is familiar with the perpetual quest for innovation. Respondi...
Present and prospective donors are always interested in what is unique, innovative and/or creative about a new program and the way it responds to the community's needs. It is no longer enough to provide services. At the same time, there is a price for maintaining a strong commitment to creative approaches. How do voluntary agencies sustain funding for sometimes risky and innovative ideas? How do they continually search for new ways of providing social, health and/or educational services and at the same time sustain the services over time?
Learn about the dynamics at play that Donshik has identified when organizations strive to be continually innovative.
Sustaining Innovation, eJP, January 4, 2012 by Stephen G. Donshik
At the 2012 AJFCA Annual Conference you will have the opportunity to participate in workshop sessions detailing the creation of innovative programming as well as generating revenue for your agency.
1 / 27 / 2012
Nonprofit Capacity Needs More Investment
Nonprofits face a crisis in their organizational "capacity," and their boards and funders need to step up to h...
Facing rising demand for services because the economy has hammered their clients, nonprofits also have had to cut their budgets, freeze or cut their staffs, salaries and benefits, and intensified the pressure on staffs already under stress and often headed toward burnout and the exit. Yet instead of actively piloting their organizations through a storm that is setting off alarm bells, nonprofit boards keep hitting the snooze button.
Cohen believes nonprofit boards and philanthropic funders can take a big step in helping to address the urgent social and global problems nonprofits face.
Nonprofit Capacity Needs More Investment, eJP, December 19, 2011, by Todd Cohen
Several 2012 AJFCA Annual Conference workshops will focus on and explore the role board members and lay leaders play in fundraising and marketing.
1 / 27 / 2012
Three Thank You Templates and You're OUT!
According to Deborah Kaplan Polivy, "Personal acknowledgements take time, a thought process and some creativity. Ho...
Nonprofit organizations spend a great deal of time soliciting donations as well as acknowledging gifts. But, with limited resources-time, donors often not only feel but notice that the thank yous they receive from their favorite charity are templates seen year after year.
Whenever possible and especially in cases involving a new donor, an increased donation, or a large donation a personal phone call or letter with a message that indicates a cultivated relationship is a best practice.
Read more about Deborah's thoughts regarding more personal thank you communication sent to donors.
Three Thank You Templates and You're OUT!, eJP, January 20, 2012 by Deborah Kaplan Polivy, Ph.D.
1 / 27 / 2012
Rethinking the Annual Report for Video
Three things are known about the nonprofit annual report: it takes a ton of time to put together beautifullyvideo, few p...
Video is a natural medium for storytelling, and that's what the annual report should be.
Rethinking the Annual Report for Video, communityorganizer2.0, January 2012
1 / 27 / 2012
40+ Social Media Dashboard Tools for Tracking Stuff
As part of Barry Hurd's on-going work developing social media for business units, he's often asked about what types of t...
The basic answer is that he doesn't have one tool (he has dozens, if not hundreds.) The real answer is that he is not tracking social media. He is tracking key performance indicators (KPI). He doesn't care if it is a shipping problem or a viral YouTube video. He simply wants to know how he can track it, manage it, and maximize results. With that said: when Barry thinks about creating a social media dashboard or using a platform to track results... he is looking at several unique business identifiers that define what tool he needs for the job at hand.
Key questions that control Barry's decision process
Who is going to use it?
Who needs to digest the end information?
Does it need to tie into legacy systems?
What business metrics does one need to map against online touch points?
Where and when is this data consumed?
What is the data one wants and does one need another tool to communicate it?
What does all this really mean?
Did one share the information with the right people?
Barry has a strategic idea . . . now what?
40+ Social Media Dashboard Tools for Tracking Stuff, Idealware, Barry Hurd Blog, November 17, 2011, by Barry Hurd blog
1 / 20 / 2012
Tips to Fund and Sustain Your Health Programs
If you offer a community-based health program for older adults, funding is likely a continuing challenge. Too often, eff...
Tips to Fund and Sustain Your Health Programs, NCOA, January 17, 2012
1 / 20 / 2012
Seven Social-Media Pitfalls for Nonprofits
Nonprofits are flocking to social media as a way to communicate with stakeholders. While that effort to engage donors an...
1. Setting up your nonprofit's Facebook account as a person instead of a page.
2. Not fully thinking through the name for your Facebook page.
3. Creating a community page as your organization's Facebook page.
4. Creating a Facebook group instead of an organizational page.ejp full logo
5. Creating a Facebook page, but not monitoring it properly.
6. Signing up for Twitter when you really don't have the time for Twitter.
7. Using a logo, rather than a graphic icon, as a profile photo.
For details about each of the seven pitfalls please read the entire article.
Seven Social-Media Pitfalls for Nonprofits, eJP, January 17, 2012, by Hannah Brazee Gregory
Hannah Brazee Gregory is a nonprofit marketing expert, workshop presenter and founder of Shoestring Creative Group, the nonprofit's agency. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-888-835-6236. Reprinted with permission of Philanthropy Journal.
1 / 13 / 2012
NPO's: Keeping it Real and on the Cutting Edge
Many nonprofit organizations (NPO's) today, particularly those working in the social services, operate, at least partial...
In this funding environment, where the prevailing economic environment is also a factor, funding is usually limited to the cost of contracted services only, with little to no consideration for other associated costs. This situation can severely impact on the "organizational capacity" of the NPO. These "collateral" administrative costs may not be of primary concern to funders and others outside the organization, but many important, even critical, costs are overlooked as well. While the profit making world has long recognized the critical value of training, NPO's are equally in need of training.
NPO's: Keeping it Real and on the Cutting Edge, eJP, January 10, 2012, by David B. Marcu
1 / 6 / 2012
Extreme Makeover: Nonprofit Board Edition
Times are challenging for both families and nonprofits. The new IRS Form 990 calls for increased transparency and accoun...
Is your organization a makeover candidate? Ask yourself these questions:
By Sue Dahling Sullivan. Reprinted by BridgeStar with permission from the July 2011 GuideStar newsletter
12 / 23 / 2011
Toward the Miraculous Future: A Chanukiya of Predictions for 2012
"There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle.&q...
"Daddy, how do we know it REALLY was a miracle, not just that somebody counted the oil the wrong way?" Morgan Cohen, age 9
In his blog this week, Seth Cohen, Director of Network Initiatives for the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, and Board President of AJFCA member agency Jewish Family & Career Services of Atlanta, shared eight bold predictions for 2012. Read Seth's blog as he wrestles with his daughter Mogan's insightful question and looks ahead to the Jewish nonprofit world in 2012.
Toward the Miraculous Future: A Chanukiya of Predictions for 2012, December 21, 2011, by eJP, by Seth Cohen
12 / 23 / 2011
Blackbaud Index Shows Modest Upward Tick in Giving
The Blackbaud Index of Charitable Giving, a broad-based fundraising index that reports overall giving trends of 1,264 US...
The Blackbaud Index of Online Giving, comprised of actual revenue data from 1748 nonprofits representing $424 million in yearly online giving, reported that online giving rose 10.6% for the three months ending October 2011 as compared to the same period in 2010.
The Blackbaud Index of Charitable Giving and The Blackbaud Index of Online Giving are updated on the 15th of each month (or the next business day) and are based on a three-month moving average of year-over-year percent changes in US-based charitable giving.
Blackbaud Index Shows Modest Upward Tick in Giving, December 15, 2011, by eJP
12 / 16 / 2011
Selecting Officers and Members of the Board: Does the CEO Have a Say?
Recently, in a meeting with a colleague a question came up about the process of engaging leadership and finding the most...
In general, the person in this role, the person is the volunteer "head" of the organization and is responsible for chairing the meetings of the board of directors and officially represents the organization in public events. The chair of the board leads the process of establishing policies and is responsible for the fiscal accountability of the agency, among other duties.
The chief executive officer (CEO) is head professional who is responsible for implementing the policies and the services of the organization successfully within the budget approved by the board of directors. The CEO is hired by the board and is accountable to the chairperson. In many nonprofits the CEO is evaluated annually or periodically by the chairperson and the level of compensation is dependent upon the evaluation and the financial situation of the organization. It is not unusual for the CEO to experience the board chair as a "boss" as well as a partner in developing the organization.
Read the entire article to learn more about the CEO's role in selecting board members.
Selecting Officers and Members of the Board: Does the CEO Have a Say? December 14, 2011, eJP, by Stephen G. Donshik
12 / 9 / 2011
Questions to Ask Prospective Board Members
A coffee date isn't a good idea only for beginning, tentative romances. A coffee or lunch date is an easy way to meet wi...
Frequently a firstblue avacado meeting with a prospective board member is set up as a lunch or coffee with a current board member and the executive director. It's a good idea to state clearly at the beginning that this is a "get-to-know-you" meeting and that no decisions need to be made before the meeting ends. Say that you'll follow up with a phone call to see if the individual is still interested and whether the board's nominating committee is still interested. If so, there may be another step or the nomination may go to the full board for a vote.
Read more to learn questions to ask prospective board members.
Questions To Ask Prospective Board Members, Blue Avocado-Board Cafe, December 5, 2011, by Jan Masaoka
12 / 2 / 2011
From Giving to Impact Investing
The philanthropic paradigm that funded the organized Jewish community for much of the 20th century is in terminal crisis...
Increasing numbers of individual Jews question not only the significance of Jewish communal involvement in their own lives but also the relevance of inward-looking Jewish institutions to global concerns.
At a time when Jewish federations and human service agencies report growing demand for their core priorities - educational initiatives, anti-poverty programs, health services, assistance to the aging - they face a sharply declining donor pool.
Many of those who do give to federations, especially younger donors, expect to be able to direct their contributions to specific beneficiaries and programs, irrespective of the budgetary needs of the broader service platforms. Growing numbers of donors want to know the measurable impact of their gifts and grants.
While the traditional Jewish nonprofit economy is reacting to these seismic shifts, a new sector dedicated to public benefit is flourishing in North America and around the globe.
Read more about this "impact economy," here.
From Giving to Impact Investing, November 30, 2011 by eJewish Philanthropy, by Shawn Landres
12 / 2 / 2011
Does Your Hiring Process Need an Overhaul?
In the last month, over 4,600 U.S.-based jobs were posted to Idealist. That's tens of thousands of applications, LOTS of...
But things don't always go as planned. The world of hiring is big and complicated, and maybe you're thinking about ways to improve your approach. Last month Idealist.org talked about the basics of a good hiring system. Below you'll find some specific questions and a checklist to help you:
• Take stock of your current processes
• Build the right hiring team for each interview
• Conduct interviews that work (it really is an art!)
• Evaluate and improve any new approaches you take
Ready? Here goes.
Does Your Hiring Process Need an Overhaul?, Idealist.org, November 11, 2011, HR Connections
12 / 2 / 2011
Social Security Launches New Online Resources
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has just announced two new websites for consumers and professionals to learn mo...
For policymakers and analysts, the Office of Retirement Policy site provides a wealth of information about who's getting and not getting Social Security benefits, and projections for the future.
Social Security Launches New Online Resources, November 28, 2011, National Council On Aging, Economic Security Update
11 / 30 / 2011
AJFCA Posts Employment Opportunity for Manager of Civic Engagement & Repair the World Programming
AJFCA is seeking a Manager of Civic Engagement & Repair the World Programming. This position will lead the developme...
The program will provide meaningful engagement opportunities within the Jewish and general communities which will serve to elevate the role and impact of volunteering within AJFCA’s network of member agencies and act as a gateway from the community into the world of Jewish communal service.
Visit AJFCA’s job posting page for more details.
11 / 23 / 2011
Human Resources and the Holidays
With the end-of-the-year fundraising and event push for nonprofits as well as the general holiday frenzy that swirls aro...
Instead of a potentially stomach-knotting office gift exchange, perhaps the following activities might drum up the giving spirit, spark a renewed sense of teamwork, uncover some hidden talents, and energize staff as the year ends. If you're lucky, maybe this season of appreciation (for material items and for the skills, talents and personalities staff bring to the table each day) will last the whole year through, and might even lead to a new benefit.
Read more about Idealist.org's holiday HR initiative ideas here.
'Tis the Season, Idealist.org, November 10, 2011, HR Connections
11 / 23 / 2011
Multi-tasking is the Key to the Present; Foca-attention is the Key to the Future
The digital revolution has dramatically changed our designation of time and place. Whereas in the pre-digital era, work ...
In order to do our work and continue to engage in "socializing" in the workplace we engage in multi-tasking. Similarly in order to cope with our family commitments and our work demands after hours we engage in multi-tasking. We serve dinner to our children, speak on the cell phone and have the TV on in the background. At work we engage in the work related activity, conduct a conversation with a friend on Google chat and may have our facebook page open in the background.
While multi-tasking is developing as a strategy for survival in today's world. Foca-attention is the key to tomorrow's world. "Foca-attention" is the abbreviation of "focused attention".
Read more about Foca-attention and the future.
Multi-tasking is the Key to the Present; Foca-attention is the Key to the Future, November 22, 2011, eJewish Philanthropy, by Jonathan Mirvis
11 / 18 / 2011
HR Book for Non-HR People (including EDs, Supervisors, Boards)
HR Book for Non-HR People incl EDs, Supervisors, Boards, Blue Avocado, October 31, 2011, By Jan MasaokaWhile there are m...
While there are many books written on HR, almost none focuses on nonprofits or addresses the unique issues and cultures in community nonprofits (for instance, the fact that in most organizations the budget does not allow for a full-time, credentialed HR director).
Jan Masaoka's (Director and Editor-in-Chief of Blue Avocado) newest book, The Nonprofit's Guide to Human Resources: Managing Your Employees & Volunteers, could have been titled "Everything You Need to Know About HR in Nonprofits." It's truly focused on HR from a nonprofit perspective, and it's written for everybody but the full-time HR professional.
To read more click here.
This article is reprinted with permission from Blue Avocado, a practical and readable online magazine for nonprofits. Subscribe free by contacting the Blue Avocado editor or visiting www.blueavocado.org.
11 / 18 / 2011
When Tweeting Depletes: How Social Media Can Disconnect Us
When Tweeting Depletes: How Social Media Can Disconnect Us, eJewish Philanthropy, November 11, 2011 by Ami Hersh a...
As people who barely remember a time before the Internet and who use Facebook (too) often to stay in touch with friends from around the world, we are not ignorant of the power of social media and technology in connecting people and ideas. However, we question the direction we are taking when we rely too heavily on technology and we fear the authenticity of our relationships when they are based on "@s" and "#s."
Authors Ami Hersh and Leor Shtull Leber admit they are guilty too. "Once we were sitting around a table with friends, each of us on our own laptop. Somebody walked in and asked if he could join and do homework with us, and we awkwardly apologized that we were actually in a meeting - it just so happened that our meeting involved us all sitting in a circle in silence working collaboratively on the same Google doc."
Still, they use the word "guilty" because of the value of personal relationships with which they were raised. "We both recently attended the JFNA General Assembly in Denver and were shocked to see the technology culture present and the (over)use of smartpones during sessions. We were encouraged to play with our phones instead of focusing on the speakers. People barely looked up - a great success according to the "Tweet! Tweet! Tweet!" message of the conference. What happened to turning off your phone for a lecture?"
Read more about, "How Social Media Can Disconnect Us."
11 / 18 / 2011
New Census Figures Highlight Older Adults' Financial Struggles
New Census Figures Highlight Older Adults' Financial Struggles, November 9, 2011, NCOA, By Ken SchwartzNew poverty figur...
New poverty figures released this week by the U.S. Census Bureau show a large increase in the number of poor Americans nationwide, specifically older adults. The criteria by which poverty is measured was expanded for this study to include a more accurate reflection of a person's overall economic needs and vulnerability, including out-of-pocket health care costs.
Read more about, "New Poverty Rate More Reflective of Economic Realities for Seniors; Tied to Increased Health Care Costs."
11 / 11 / 2011
Changes in Administration: Implications for the Staff
November 1, 2011 -Stephen G. Donshik - eJewish PhilanthropyEvery time a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) takes the rein...
Every time a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) takes the reins at an organization, change is inevitable, particularly because each CEO brings his or her own unique administrative style and vision to the organization. Often the new CEO brings to the position a great deal of enthusiasm and a desire to improve the way the agency delivers its services to the community. Often this change greatly impacts either positively or negatively on the staff and board of directors.
Learn more about changes in administration and how they affect an agency's staff.
11 / 4 / 2011
It's Long Term Care Awareness Month - Learn Who You Should Be Talking to About Long Term Care Insurance
AJFCA would be pleased to help your agency launch a Long Term Care Education Initiative. Learn how to empower your commu...
LTC Awareness Month is an industry-wide effort to raise awareness of how important it is to plan for the future. Without a plan to cover LTC needs, many people put their retirement savings in jeopardy, run the risk of becoming a burden to their children or give up their option to choose where they receive care.
The goal for LTC Awareness Month is to help deliver this important message to a receptive audience - the people who are most likely to buy an LTCi policy.
To help find the right people, LIMRA conducted a series of focus groups that included both LTCi buyers and consumers who matched the profile of likely buyers. The objective was to find out what's on people's minds so you know how to approach them about the importance of planning for LTC.
Read more here to find out:
• Their dreams, worries and fears
• How they feel about LTCi
• Why they bought a policy
• Why they didn't buy
• What they expect from a salesperson
• What this means for you
11 / 4 / 2011
Affordable Care Act 101 - Conference Call Series
The Health and Human Services Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships for Faith and Community Leaders is ho...
Please RSVP by choosing from the dates below:
November 8th, 3:00pm EST
(With special focus on the Affordable Care Act and Behavioral Health)
November 16th, 4:00pm EST
November 29th, 3:00pm EST
(With special focus on the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan)
PowerPoint slides can be found by clicking here or on the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services website (under tools and resources). Please send any questions you may have prior to the calls to ACA101@hhs.gov.
10 / 28 / 2011
CMS Proposes Improvements To Medicare
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) has proposed revisions to the Medicare Advantage program and prescription ...
Read more about the proposed rule here.
CMS Office of Public Affairs - October 03, 2011 - NCOA Newsletter
10 / 19 / 2011
Idealist.org Reports on Employment Trends in the Nonprofit Sector
Idealist.org, a nonprofit organization specializing in nonprofit human resources, has published a report entitled, Bounc...
To read more about employment trends in the nonprofit sector, download the report here.
10 / 19 / 2011
Transferring Leadership: a Multigenerational Enterprise
As the Jewish community develops new leaders, funders, professionals, and volunteers, we must examine different ways to...
Read the entire article here.
October 16, 2011 by PresenTense Group, eJewish Philanthropy
10 / 7 / 2011
Sharsheret Awarded Grant to Develop Program for Jewish Breast Cancer Survivors
Sharsheret, a national not-for-profit organization supporting young women and their families, of all Jewish backgrounds,...
As part of a broader effort to support breast cancer awareness in young women, Sharsheret will develop tailored programming that addresses life after breast cancer for young survivors, including the impact on career, relationships, reproduction, health and wellness, finances, and the increased risk of breast cancer and other related cancers in Jewish families.
9 / 16 / 2011
New Canadian Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs
As of July 1, 2011, the new "one-stop shop" Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (formerly known as the Canadi...
The new CIJA describes itself as the official voice for all issues conerning the organized Canadian Jewish community, including those previously handled by the Canadian Jewish Congress (CJC), the Canada-Israel Committee (CIC) and the Quebec-Israel Committee. A recent article in the Toronto Star indicates that the University Outreach Committee has also been folded into the new CIJA. CEO Shimon Fogel noted that the new body is in a better position to serve the advocacy needs of Canadian Jewry, and the broader pro-Israel community in Canada. AJFCA Canada is exploring how the new CIJA and AJFCA Canada might work together to identify and address issues important to the Jewish community.
9 / 16 / 2011
New Schusterman Foundation Hire to Focus on Young Jewish Service Leaders
The Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation announced that Abby Strunk Saloma will join its national office in Wa...
8 / 19 / 2011
Departments of Health and Human Services & Treasury Provide Affordable Insurance Exchanges and Tax Credits to Help Middle-Class Families
Recently, the Departments of Health and Human Services and Treasury took the next steps to establish Affordable Insuranc...
Recently, the Departments of Health and Human Services and Treasury took the next steps to establish Affordable Insurance Exchanges – one-stop marketplaces where consumers can choose private health insurance plans that fit their health needs and have the same kind of insurance choices as members of Congress. Among other policies, the proposed rules describe how middle-class families will gain access to unprecedented tax relief that will dramatically reduce the cost of coverage.
Since President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act in 2010, over half of states have taken actions to build an Exchange. HHS awarded $185 million to 13 states and the District of Columbia to help them build Affordable Insurance Exchanges and, with Treasury, posted three proposed rules that will provide a simple, streamlined, and affordable path for consumers to use the Exchanges to purchase private health insurance. Additionally, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius sent a letter to governors laying out options and resources available to states to set up their Exchanges.
"Too many American families have been priced out or locked out of the health insurance market. Exchanges will give them control and could save them thousands of dollars a year," said Secretary Sebelius. "I am encouraged by the progress states have made to date and am excited to give them more resources to continue their work."
"Today we're laying the foundation to provide tax incentives to help working families purchase health insurance," said Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. "This new tax credit brings us a big step closer to achieving one of the signature goals of the Affordable Care Act – to provide tens of millions of Americans with access to affordable health insurance coverage."
The Affordable Care Act creates Affordable Insurance Exchanges that will allow eligible individuals, families, and small businesses to shop for coverage starting in 2014. More than half the states have already taken action to begin building an Exchange and the new grant awards will accelerate that progress. The Exchange Establishment grants recently awarded build on earlier investments in states. In 2010, HHS awarded 49 states and the District of Columbia $50 million to begin planning their Exchanges. HHS expects to make more grant awards in the coming months.
Center for Faith-Based & Neighborhood Partnerships
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
7 / 22 / 2011
Developing the Diverse Executive Talent Our Sector Needs
Although racial minorities make up 34% of United States population, less than 7% of non-profits are led by a person of c...
7 / 21 / 2011
Putting Human Needs on the National Radar Screen
The National Human Services Assembly has released a brief entitled, Putting Human Needs on the National Radar Screen, a ...
The National Human Services Assembly has released a brief entitled, Putting Human Needs on the National Radar Screen, a brief on messaging and collaborative action for non-profit human service and community development organizations. The National Assembly is an association of more than eighty of the nation’s leading national non-profit human service and community development organizations.
The impetus for the brief came from the board of the National Assembly and the National Collaboration for Youth, which is a part of the Assembly. Both groups saw that human services were among the first programs to be cut at both state and federal levels and that the public and public officials are not aware of the importance of these programs to vulnerable people.
The brief suggests language but also establishing new narratives about the collective contributions of related human service and community development programs.
“We either suffer death by a thousand cuts,” said Irv Katz, President of the National Assembly, “or we get more sophisticated about telling our story and more collaborative in demonstrating our collective impact.” “This is not about programs,” he added, “it is about human needs. Those needs are not on the nation’s radar screen currently and won’t be unless service providers and their allies take action to change that.”
7 / 8 / 2011
Going Places! Social Club for Young Adults with Asperger’s: A Collaborative Partnership between Jewish Social Service Agency & Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia
The Going Places! Social Club was envisioned and created by JSSA and the JCCNV to help lessen the isolation of an unders...
7 / 1 / 2011
Project Heart - Holocaust Era Asset Restitution Taskforce
If you or your family owned movable, immovable, or intangible property that was confiscated, looted or forcibly sold in ...
If you or your family owned movable, immovable, or intangible property that was confiscated, looted or forcibly sold in countries governed or occupied by the Nazi forces or Axis powers during the Holocaust era and you or your relatives received no restitution for that property after the Holocaust era, you may be eligible to participate in the Holocaust Era Asset Restitution Taskforce Project (Project Heart).
Project Heart is a non-profit initiative of the Jewish Agency for Israel, funded by and in cooperation with the government of Israel.
For More Information or to download the questionnaire, visit http://www.heartwebsite.org or call toll free 800-584-1559, or direct line 414-967-2581 between 9am-6pm EST, Sunday-Thursday (except Jewish holidays) and the questionnaire will be mailed to you.
6 / 23 / 2011
Repair the World Releases First Comprehensive Study on Attitudes and Behaviors of Jewish Millennials Towards Volunteering and Service
Repair the World is pleased to present the first-ever comprehensive study of contemporary Jewish young adults and their ...
Repair the World is pleased to present the first-ever comprehensive study of contemporary Jewish young adults and their attitudes and behaviors towards community service. Entitled "Volunteering +Values: A Repair the World Report of Jewish Young Adults," the study was commissioned by Repair the World and conducted as a collaborative effort between the Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies at Brandeis University and Gerstein-Agne Strategic Communications.
Jon Rosenberg, CEO of Repair the World, will be joined by the key members of the research team for a web-based presentation on Monday, June 27th at 1:30PM ET. To join the webinar, click here. The event password is repair.
To learn more and access the entire study, please click here.
6 / 10 / 2011
Foundations Sign Their Own Giving Pledge
The Giving Pledge has inspired yet another pledge for big donors: Today more than 60 of the country’s foundations ...
6 / 1 / 2011
Repair the World and American Jewish World Service Offer an Updated On1Foot.org
Repair the World is partnering with American Jewish World Service, offering a new and improved On1Foot! The cutting-edge...
The new and improved On1Foot allows you to:
- Search and browse more than 1,000 biblical, rabbinic and contemporary Jewish texts related to social justice themes, all of which are fully translated and paired with thoughtful discussion questions
- Access hundreds of prepared text studies and divrei Torah, each tagged by social justice topic
- Create custom source sheets using texts from the site
- Add your voice by contributing new texts and commenting on existing texts
- Share ideas and best practices by messaging other registered users of the site—over 900 educators, clergy members and social activists!
5 / 11 / 2011
Joint Distribution Committee Holocaust Archives
On Monday, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) announced the launch of of its Shared Legacy Project. ...
Holocaust survivors and their families can see if a person's name is among the over 500,000 listed in materials now posted by JDC from its work rescuing Jews during and after the War -- and, if found, can view and download the document. You can also browse over 1,500 photos from the DP camps and other places where “The Joint” worked during and after the Shoah and help JDC identify the people in the photos. To do a search and to see these dramatic materials and photos, visit the website at here. For more information, contact email@example.com.
5 / 9 / 2011
Mortage Information for Seniors
A comprehensive guide to housing and mortgages for seniors click here...
8 / 25 / 2008
Engaging Baby Boomers in JFS and other JEWISH COMMUNITY Voluntary Agencies
IntroductionIn the late summer of 2008, the Association of Jewish Family and Children’s Agencies (AJFCA) received ...
In the late summer of 2008, the Association of Jewish Family and Children’s Agencies (AJFCA) received a grant from the National Agency/Federation Alliance (The Alliance) of United Jewish Communities to study existing programs for Baby Boomers within the Jewish community and elsewhere, to make this report and resources available to the Jewish Community, and to develop procedures for agencies to follow. (This report is Phase One of the Project.)
During the fall of 2008 (September through mid December), AJFCA conducted stage one of a three-stage research project on engaging Baby Boomers in the work of non-for-profit organizations, specifically JFS agencies. To conduct the research, AJFCA engaged Howard S. Feinberg of HSF Associates. During this phase, AJFCA’s consultant surveyed Jewish Family Services, Federations, JCCs, JCRCs and religious institutions. He also conducted a topical literature and research scan using publications and web-based resources. What follows is a summary of the research along with next step recommendations for the next stages of the project as well as recommendations for the Jewish Family Service system.
Read the entire report here.