Degrading Core Values

Three disparate things happened to me within the course of one workday that all sing a similar and very important message.

First, was the interview I heard with James Comey on NPR’s Morning Edition.  One of the many compelling comments he made came back to resonate at the end of the day, connecting with two other seemingly disparate events.  Regardless of the impetus for Comey’s comment, his message is one we should all heed.

“We fight like crazy in this country about guns and about Read more

Changing a Culture of Racism and Misogyny

At some point, we all come to understand that perception is reality.  For such a basic fact, so many are all too frequently caught short by this.  Our failure to remember this day in and day out allows problems to develop that never should have been there in the first place.

A recent conversation about racism is proof of this. The conversations that have been swirling as the layers of the history of Harvey Weinstein’s behavior reinforces this.  Let’s begin with racism.  In this conversation, the Read more

Believe in your Brand

My brain works in funny ways.  Listening to Shankar Vedantam on NPR talking about golfing with big name clubs versus no-name clubs, my mind goes to nonprofits.

Embed from Getty Images

Vedantam was unpacking yet another interesting piece of social science research.  This one looked at whether using a putter from a well-known brand—in this case, Nike—made a difference in the success of the golfer, compared to those putting with a generic club.  And it did:  those who were told the putter they were using Read more

Nonprofit Leaders:  Find the Balance

David Miliband, President of the International Rescue Committee, was recently interviewed on NPR‘s Morning Edition by co-host, David Greene. Miliband was asked if he was worried about his employees on the ground in Syria.  As we would all expect, he responded, “I’m very worried, always, ….”

Considering the heart wrenching stories coming out of Syria, this NPR headline is more than troubling:  “the world has become a bit dull to news from Syria.” But truthfully, it wasn’t Miliband’s comments on the consequences of Russian bombings or Read more

All Costs Considered

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

What Feeds your soul?

I am sure that if you are fortunate, as I am, you have eaten your way through the recent Thanksgiving holiday and anxiously anticipating the holiday feasts still to come.  Thus, I’m pretty certain that for most of you, your body is well fed.

But how’s your soul doing?  This is a need which I hear repeatedly, mostly from people explaining to me why they have decided to leave the corporate world and join the nonprofit world.  I heard it again in a recent  story on Read more

Separate the Wheat from the Chaff

So, the question gets asked of some presidential economic advisor in some NPR interview (and, I’m sure, is repeated in many other interview settings), is $1 trillion going to take care of getting rid of all of the “toxic assets” banks are currently holding?  The response, in summary:  well, minimally, it should go a long a way. 

We are talking about sums of money that the vast, vast majority of nonprofits, let alone their clients, can’t even fathom.  It is a sum of money that Read more