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Recently, I got a question from a young executive director of an organization clearly in the start-up phase of its lifecycle. The board, too, is young. And, as so many young people are, they are very earnest and concerned with doing the right thing in the right way. But the subject of the question she asked is not a young person’s or young organization’s question; it is a question that I get so regularly in some form, I am almost tired of answering Read more
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For people like me who love fireworks, early July is always exciting time. It seems no matter where you are, you don’t have to wait until the 4th to see the displays of color in the air and hear the bang and whistle of exploding fireworks. And this year, the IRS treated the nonprofit sector to its own special brand of fireworks.
It came on July 1 and it wasn’t blue and gold and shimmering and oh-so-wonderful in the sky, but rather fell more Read more
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The amount of bad, blatantly unethical, or just plain wrong information that supposed experts give out, and which nonprofits accept, is staggering. After all, it came from an “expert,” so how can you push back or question? And what happens when this bad information gets lionized as truth? Let me share some recent examples.
A few weeks ago, I got an email from a stranger who’d found me on the web. He had an intricate story to tell of a board’s deceit, favoritism, unethical Read more
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A few weeks ago, I got a request to speak with an executive director and a board president about their organization’s give policy. I always counsel boards that their policy on board giving must come with consequences. Since very few boards are willing to do so, very few organizations have an actual, formal policy (that means written down, approved by a board vote and memorialized in the policy manual—be it virtual or tangible).
The duo I was counseling had done everything it should have: Read more
Earlier this week, NPR’s All Things Considered did an interesting story on criminals being charged for court costs and for a public defender. Surprising - yes and no.
Jurisdiction after jurisdiction has been looking every previously untapped income source in order to help pay the bills. If they have already passed legislation allowing the taxation of nonprofit profits, why not start charging criminals for the system the state set up to determine their guilt or innocence?
The Fifth, Sixth and Fourteenth Amendments convey our nation’s presumption of Read more
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What’s trending? How often do we hear that on daily basis? Even before the term was hijacked by social media, trends were important. And yet, it is amazing how little attention nonprofit staff and board members pay attention to them.
One of our consultants just mentioned that he had recently attended his local professional conference. For the past five years, he said, attendance has been dwindling. Is anyone talking about this? Has staff tried to understand the source of this trend? Has the board Read more
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Lots of people are asking us what the trends are in hiring in the nonprofit sector. All of the different collectors of hiring data in the nonprofit sector that we’ve seen are saying the same thing: nonprofits are hiring. According to Nonprofit HR’s “2014 Nonprofit Employment Practices Survey” (the Survey), 46% of nonprofits surveyed increased staff in 2013, as opposed to just 17% that decreased staff, and it looks like more (45%) are hiring new staff for new programs than asking current staff Read more