We Need More Passion for the Work, Not the Organization

Kathy Sierra, one of my favorite bloggers, posted the other day about passion at work. She argues that we shouldn't be asking employees to feel passionate about the organization they work for, but the work that they do. What does it mean for me to be passionate about my work, as opposed to passionate about my organization? A passion for work means that: I'm committed to principles of excellence and... Read more →


5 Reasons You Don't Need Training

When management finds that staff are not engaging in work behaviors desired by the organization, they often turn to training as the response for "fixing" the problem. But training frequently isn't the answer. In this post I want to share 5 situations that won't be resolved by training: 1. To Make Up for Poorly Designed Work Processes--Many organizations have poorly designed work processes and customer flow. These processes have often... Read more →


It's Not Just About "Good Enough," It's About Empowerment

My post earlier this week on disruptive innovations and "good enough" solutions sparked an interesting response from Niels Unis: "Bamboo gives the example of micro-lending which has changed many people‚Äôs lives. What is so effective about micro-lending, among other things, is that it empowers people to change their own lives finding solutions in situations that they know and understand. This empowerment, however, is a radical idea, and much more than... Read more →


What if Social Change Depends on More "Good Enough" Solutions?

Grameen Bank, one of the best-known microlenders in the world, fights global poverty by lending small, collateral-free sums of money to the poorest of the poor. In 2005, it had 5.6 million borrowers (97% of them women) in nearly 60,000 villages throughout Bangladesh. Since its inception in 1976, it has lent more than $5 billion to its borrowers, with a more than 98% rate of recovery. Grameen has been so... Read more →


Building Nonprofit Networks Part Six: Creating Collective Value with Individuals

Before I went on my little sabbatical earlier this month, I'd been working on a series devoted to Nonprofit Networking based on NetGains. In that last post, I talked about the need to create a collective value propositions in networks because it is the perception of value that makes a network greater than the sum of its parts. I had planned to next write about the developmental tasks of a... Read more →


Building Nonprofit Networks--Part Five: Creating Value

For the past several days I've been exploring three types of nonprofit networks and the characteristics/features of each. Yesterday we discussed the need for networks to have a collective value proposition, which I promised to explore in more detail today. According to NetGains: "As goes the collective value proposition, so goes the network. The collective value proposition is what makes the network greater than the sum of its parts. As... Read more →


Potential Donor Looking for Nonprofit Wish List

Sarah of Freedom for IP is looking for a way to create a "nonprofit wish list" similar to an Amazon Wish List that allows her to: Create a list that she could give to friends, family, etc. where they could donate money to support one of her favorite nonprofits, in lieu of giving her gifts. She's interested in unrestricted giving (and aren't all nonprofits looking for those opportunities?) so existing... Read more →


Stop Managing to the Exceptions and Start Learning from the Consequences

In my work with nonprofits, I've found that there's a tendency to manage to the exceptions. This plays itself out a few ways. In some cases, entire systems will be developed around what could go wrong. Staff management policies and and practices are based on the few who are problems, rather than the many who are not. Client services are developed to "control" the "bad" client, rather than to meet... Read more →


Looking for Best Practice Examples of Social Change Websites? Here are 534 of Them

I've begun using Google Alerts and this morning, Rochelle Robinson's Socialchangewebsites slid into my inbox. According to the site: Social Change Websites is a directory of the best nonprofit, grassroots, and advocacy campaign websites dedicated to making a difference in the world. Our goal is to create a central resource for organizations and causes using the best practices of online advocacy to support their mission. We strive to make this... Read more →


Lessons from Starbucks

I'm not a marketer, but regular readers of this blog will have figured out that I'm always on the lookout for marketing information and techniques. To me, marketing is the power of persuasion and frankly, we can all use a little marketing savvy. That's why I was pleased to find on this morning's visit to Slideshare that John Moore of Brand Autopsy had just uploaded the fabulous slideshow above, sharing... Read more →