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I was leading a recent nonprofit board retreat when one of the board members prompted me to chuckle with this Marine Corps saying: "We have done so much for so long with so little, we could probably do everything with nothing forever." It was offered within the context of a discussion about envisioning, inviting and planning for financial abundance at this particular nonprofit. So many of us function with this frame of reference - in our nonprofits and even in some areas of our lives. There is so much more for us if we can envision what we want, believe it is possible and plan for its inevitability. Wishing you...

The “Passion Factor” is the wild card of the nonprofit world. It's a game changer. It can take an organization off track and/or propel it to new heights. It is one of the most interesting and complicating factors in the nonprofit world.

Passion Positives

Passion is the fuel of the nonprofit organization. It’s what draws many of us to the nonprofit. It brings us to serve organizations as staff members, board members and volunteers. Passion is what inspires us to work long tireless hours in service to the nonprofit.

Passion can cause us to question our priorities and explore new directions. When channeled properly, passion ca...

Volunteers are the lifeblood of any nonprofit organization, yet many nonprofits find themselves caught in a dialogue of “not enough.”  A complicating factor is that leaders sometimes bring a service mentality which actually prevents them from being served.

Have you ever heard, said or believed any of the following statements?

  • It’s easier to do it myself.

  • I don’t have time to delegate.

  • There are no volunteers to help.

  • There are not enough volunteers to go around.

You may say to yourself, “I have asked,” or “I have tried.” Unless you have succeeded in growing the ranks, it’s time to try again. If you cho...

Getting others to follow is a key skill for any volunteer leader.

Ensuring that we have other volunteers working with us also ensures the future of the organizations we are supporting.  We often feel alone as volunteer leaders - that there is no one else out there to help. But this is not true.

You are not alone. Getting others to work with us requires thought and determination.

These "8 Pillars of Leadership" offer thoughts to get you started.

(1) Self-Awareness - What gifts will you share with the world?

You have a unique set of skills and abilities that make you a unique brand of leader. Know what you're good at. Capitaliz...

As a catalyst, you have the power to create momentum for positive change.

Whether you are a new or returning president, board member, committee chair, church leader, PTA leader or community leader, there is great potential before you. You come to this opportunity with unique skills, thoughts and perspectives.

As a nonprofit leader you have the added advantage of the “passion factor” (i.e., a sincere passion for the cause that brings you to volunteer). Let’s tap it!

Read this article – take what applies. Write down your thoughts. Utilize this to further your own thinking and enjoy the process!

Here are 10 essential visioning...

Meetings are a conundrum: we need them; we loathe them.

At their best, they provide an opportunity to motivate, connect, inform and inspire our organization members, board members and volunteers.

At their worst, they leave us frustrated and bewildered.

I have been on both sides of the gavel. As a facilitator, I make it my business to seek and practice strategies to run results-oriented, motivational meetings. As a participant-observer, I have observed the things that leaders do to foster low attendance.

Here are some bad ideas:

  • Tell people they don’t need to come.

  • Start late – consistently.

  • Finish late – consist...

Many of us are gearing up for the time of year when volunteer recruitment is taking place.

It's the best time of year to remember that we - the volunteer leaders of the world - are not alone. 

Several years ago I conducted some field research - as part of my exploration, I asked 200+ potential volunteers why they were not serving. There were a number of answers that I'll expand upon in the next few weeks but the #1 reason volunteers did not come forward was, "Nobody asked me."

We have to remember that we are not alone. We have to remember to know what we need - and then ask for what we need. This takes some initial pl...

It's time for March Madness - the NCAA Tournament is in full swing.

Regardless of the team you are rooting for, there are some winning (and simple) strategies applied by coaches that nonprofit leaders can use to win.

Here are 5 universal strategies for winning as a nonprofit Board member and/or community leader.

  • Recruit the best players. Know what you need. Ask for what you need. The "fill the seat" strategy won't win games. Chances are you will need players with specific skills, specific attitudes/work ethics, and a shared hunger/passion for organization's purpose.

  • Create buy-in for winning strategies. Outline y...

If you are a volunteer leader, practice saying this: "That's a great idea! Would you be willing to be in charge of that?"

If you have been a volunteer at any point in your life, you have probably been the receptacle of a wealth of good ideas from well-meaning parents, church-goers, club members, enthusiastic supporters, etc.

Most of the ideas that I have been given in my career as a volunteer leader have been excellent ideas and for many years, I felt burdened by the responsibility of executing all good ideas given to me. 

These great ideas might be delivered in a way that sounds something like this: "Have you ever thought...