The Nonprofit Sector Must Change, or Be Left Behind!

I often start my speeches or consulting sessions by stating that the nonprofit sector is broken. I'm not talking about being a little off track or needing some tweaks here and there. I am talking about smashed up and shattered to splinters BROKEN. Consider the present social sector. Not only do we benefit from aggressiveContinue reading “The Nonprofit Sector Must Change, or Be Left Behind!”

Donors – A Case for Funding Capacity Building

When you ask a donor what their goal is with their philanthropy, they will most certainly respond that they "want to make a difference".  They may have a specific ideas about how they want to make a difference, and maybe even what organization they wish to support, but in the end they want to makeContinue reading “Donors – A Case for Funding Capacity Building”

I Am Thankful For The Work of Philanthropy in my Life

Nonprofits are not just organizations – they are the face (and soul) of our communities. They help millions of individuals every day meet basic needs, such as food, shelter, health care and education. But that us not all nonprofits do for our communities. Nonprofits also give shape to our boldest dreams, highest ideals, and noblestContinue reading “I Am Thankful For The Work of Philanthropy in my Life”

Focus on Outcomes, Not Overhead

Often nonprofit executives are so focused on keeping our budget tight that we forget to ask ourselves, are we cutting corners? What could we do if we had more money? What opportunities to better serve our beneficiaries are we missing by being so fiscally conservative? Most long-time nonprofit leaders have a “do more with less” mindset,Continue reading “Focus on Outcomes, Not Overhead”

How To Find The Right Donor-Advised Fund (And Why)

Donor-advised funds have long been a popular vehicle for charitable giving, and many in the field expect the popularity of DAFs to continue to grow as the Baby Boom generation reaches retirement.  But as the concept has grown in popularity, so have the number of options and providers. It is therefore important that both donorsContinue reading “How To Find The Right Donor-Advised Fund (And Why)”

Benefits of Donor-Advised Funds

Donor-advised funds (DAFs)–simply defined as funds held within, and managed by, a public charity–are fast becoming THE most popular vehicle for charitable giving in the U.S. Despite the sluggish economy, the number of DAFs in the United States actually grew by 152,365 (3%) in 2009, according to the National Philanthropic Trust's 2010 Donor-Advised Fund Report.Continue reading “Benefits of Donor-Advised Funds”

Innovation is Alive and Well in the Nonprofit Sector

It has been well-documented that America’s unparalleled charitable spending has not led to better outcomes. This has led to calls for donors to be more actively involved with their grants, but those of us who understand the complexities involved in the nonprofit sector know that asking donors to each become educated and implement innovative strategiesContinue reading “Innovation is Alive and Well in the Nonprofit Sector”

Foundations and Capacity Building

Any nonprofit executive will tell you their biggest concern is not programs, or board management, or even money; their biggest concern every day is that they will have to send someone away who is really in need of their service.  Today this fear is a reality for many nonprofit executives who have to send peopleContinue reading “Foundations and Capacity Building”

The Most Powerful Partnerships – Foundations and Nonprofit Intermediary Organizations (IO)

Partnerships have never been "popular", and certainly not common, in the nonprofit sector.  The basic premise for this is that each organization must compete for limited philanthropic dollars.  Not only is this view counter-productive, but actually a hindrance in today's new landscape of more involved and educated donors who seek out effective partnerships and collaborations thatContinue reading “The Most Powerful Partnerships – Foundations and Nonprofit Intermediary Organizations (IO)”

Integrated Mission Investing

There are two facets to strategic mission investing. First is integrated mission investing, and second is leveraged mission investing.  The distinguishing characteristic of integrated mission investing is that foundations treat mission investments as a substantial and inseparable part of their program strategy from the very beginning of the program initiatives. They make frequent mission investmentsContinue reading “Integrated Mission Investing”