My Gift to You...Best Apps for Nonprofit Leaders

GEEK ALERT!!!.... I have decided to spend December sharing my super geek-ness with you, my loyal fans! I am kicking the month off with a look at the tools I use to make my life easier.

There's never enough time or money to get our work done. I get it. I share your pain as a solopreneur. Aside from being a leadership geek, I also consider myself to be a bit of a technology nerd. Today, I am featuring my list of 10 Top Apps/Programs that all leaders need in order to do their jobs better in a digital age.

Calendar Apps

Oh my gosh...I have to say that scheduling appointments with people is an exhausting task. You know how it goes. It starts with throwing out a few dates for a possible meeting and it ends up with a long email chain of "yes", "no", and "what time" comments. In my first few months of doing business, I found scheduling to be my biggest time suck. I also recalled that this was a major problem back when I was an ED without an assistant.


Acuity-Acuity Scheduling is...

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Gen Z'ers Signal Hope for Leadership...Really!

Here’s something that you probably don’t hear often…I love working with millennials. Over the past year, I have had the privilege of coaching many 20 somethings and I have to say…they are fantastic.

The next wave of workers in this cohort make up GenZ, a subset of millennials. This generation encompasses those born after 1996, and by 2020, might supply up to 36% of the workforce, according to some observers. In a recent Robert Half study, the key characteristics of GenZ include the following:

· They are digital natives

· They are more diverse

· They are more educated

What I find exciting is the refreshing outlook which the Z'ers bring to the workplace. GenZ'ers are characterized as being highly creative and innovative. Additionally, they are lifelong learners. How can this not be exciting to those who are looking for the next generation of leaders to step up? So, what can current leaders do to prepare for this crew?

1) Get your...

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Six Ways to Model Grit as a Nonprofit Leader

Uncategorized Nov 09, 2018

Everyone should join a book club. I am fortunate enough to be part of an amazing group of truly brilliant women who meet once a month to drink a little wine and discuss some great books. Our choice this month was “GRIT” by Angela Duckworth. Duckworth is the Founder and CEO of Character Lab, a nonprofit whose mission is to advance the science and practice of character development. She is also the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, faculty co-director of the Penn-Wharton Behavior Change For Good Initiative, and faculty co-director of Wharton People Analytics. And, she wrote a groundbreaking book in 2016 entitled “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance.”

GRIT offers a strong case for substantiating the premise that when it comes to successful outcomes, grit trumps talent every time. The book is filled with examples of how those individuals who demonstrate perseverance and passion toward long-term...

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Hitting the RESET Button

Uncategorized Nov 01, 2018

Welcome to November. It seems like quite some time since I have blogged or written to members of the Think Good community. I am not a proponent of excuses but I do find myself needing to make a few right now!

 

The fall was super busy at Think Good Leadership. I was heavily involved in four major educational activities including the following:

  • Presenting a session entitled: Nonprofit Financial Sustainability. with my friends from BB&T and Concannon Miller
  • Co-presenting a workshop at the PANO Conference (Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations). My colleague, Mark Aurand and I presented a session entitled "What's In Your Box". Our focus was on storytelling around diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Presented a lunch and learn for my colleagues at AFP entitled "Leadership for Life"
  • Sponsored a program entitled "Waging Justice" with my college friend Paul Zeitz

 

I have continued to work with my clients on a variety of leadership challenges as a consultant. I...

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A Deer in Headlights

Uncategorized Oct 28, 2018

My transition to an executive director of a non profit was anything but traditional. I originally joined my former organization as the Corporate Development Director. I had raised money before in the educational world and had run my own business. I was confident about what I could bring to the organization. I had a fairly straightforward task - build a corporate giving program that would bring volunteers and donors to serve our mission with their time, treasure and talent.

Less than a year into this position, a series of unfortunate events led to the board to make a leadership change at the top of the organization. Naively, I raised my hand to serve as the interim Executive Director (ED).  I suppose you can say I have always been a risk taker when it comes to my professional life. Way before Sheryl Sandberg’s book, Lean In, I was raising my hand to give myself every new opportunity that I could grab.  My philosophy has always been to go for it.  In my opinion,...

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One Year...Four Lessons On Thinking Good at Think Good Leadership

Uncategorized Sep 14, 2018

I have taken lots of twists and turns in my career journey but always with an end game in mind. And here I am. 

A year ago, I made the decision that I could actually launch a business that would serve the social sector in a much bigger way than leading one agency at a time. My passion is igniting people and organizations and I’ve always dreamed of building a business that could impact nonprofits in a BIG way. With passion, industry knowledge and lots of experience in the trenches, I was off and running….

Almost immediately upon making the decision to start Think Good Leadership, my plans were diverted. I agreed to take on a three-month intern Executive Director role for a local nonprofit going through a merger. Three months turned into a year and I am finally seeing this fascinating experience coming to an end. I hoped to test my knowledge about change management and I did just that.   

In the meantime, I have been the “little red hen.”...

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ArtsQuest...Where the Arts and Leadership Meet

Uncategorized Aug 06, 2018

ArtsQuest is a Bethlehem based nonprofit dedicated to increasing access to the arts through music, arts, festivals, cultural experiences and educational and outreach programs, while significantly contributing to local economic development, urban revitalization, and community enrichment. Musikfest is run by ArtsQuest and is the flagship event of the organization, which reaches 1.5 million people annually.

If you are a regular follower of this blog, you know that I love to look at how organizations can be "real time" case studies for different leadership models. In this article, I will share the inspiring story of a ArtsQuest, a transformative organization and how it applies to THE LEADERSHIP CHALLENGE. The Leadership Challenge approaches leadership as a measurable, learnable, and teachable set of behaviors, The Leadership Challenge framework grew out of rigorous research that first began in 1982 when Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner set out to understand those times when leaders performed...

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Is Shared Leadership a Real Thing?

Uncategorized Jul 25, 2018

I have to be honest, I have been thinking about writing this article for a long time. In the Spring, an organization approached me about doing some work on an organization managing through change. Without a clearly defined succession plan in place they were considering a number of ways to get through a leadership crisis and they were curious about my thoughts on shared leadership. In this case, shared leadership meant that two current leaders within the organization would redistribute the duties of the former CEO.

Not knowing much about this topic, I started researching this type of model. Realizing quickly that all the data in the world wasn’t going to really help me understand this concept, I decided to interview some of my nonprofit colleagues.

My first interview was with a dynamic duo of women from Berks Connections/Pretrial Services (BCPS). They arrived wearing matching outfits…and I don’t mean agency tee-shirts. They call this “twinning” and it...

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