Blog/Articles

How Funders are Pivoting Quickly in This Crisis

Posted by on Apr 9, 2020 in Articles, Blog

How Funders are Pivoting Quickly in This Crisis

The past several weeks have seen impressive and quick pivots by many funders adapting to the new environment brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.  Case in point – there are now more than 300 community response and relief funds organized by foundations, United Ways and other organizations. Learn MoreMany funders have streamlined application and reporting requirements, and…

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5 Things Funders Can Do Right Now to Help Nonprofits During This Crisis

Posted by on Mar 18, 2020 in Articles, Blog

COVID-19:  This story is unfolding by the hour, and we don’t know what the ramifications will be next week, much less six months or a year from now.  Even with the roller-coaster market at play, though, funders have options on how they can best support their grant partners through this crisis.  You and they are,…

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Trends in Philanthropy Grantmakers Need to Know

Posted by on Jan 29, 2020 in Articles, Blog

A key component in developing Philanthropy Ohio’s strategic framework was to learn about national trends in the philanthropic sector. I interviewed seven regional and national thought-leaders and reviewed numerous reports and studies. I’ve now brought this learning forward with updated information on high-level trends that grantmakers need to pay attention to. Philanthropy Ohio first posted my…

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Bill Gates has His List, Here’s Mine

Posted by on Dec 19, 2019 in Articles, Blog

Bill Gates recently shared his annual list of favorite books, a collection of powerful stories from 2019 I’d like to share my own year-end list, albeit of a different nature.   I serve in many roles working with foundation and nonprofit leaders, boards and staff – thought-partner, planner, facilitator, coach and oftentimes organizational “therapist.” The connecting thread…

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Sometimes Board Chairs Need Support, Too

Posted by on Oct 17, 2019 in Articles, Blog

It is common practice for chief executives of foundations and nonprofits to utilize coaching to bolster their leadership and management skills. This can ultimately benefit the entire organization.   It is less frequent for board chairs to have a similar kind of support even though their unique leadership role in governance often presents its own challenges. The…

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Going Deep into Organizational Change

Posted by on Sep 19, 2019 in Articles, Blog

(Part Two of a Two-Part Series) Last month, I shared Part One of a two-part interview with long-time colleague, Jill Blair, about her paper,“New Leader, Endless Possibility” (Read here) Jill describes the year-long journey she spent as an embedded Senior Fellow change-agent during a critical transition phase of a legacy agency.Here is Part Two of my interview…

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Going Deep into Organizational Change

Posted by on Aug 28, 2019 in Blog

(Part One of a Two-Part Series) I have often written about and presented stories here on organizational development, leadership and leadership transition issues. I am endlessly fascinated by how foundations, nonprofits and most any other kinds of organizations govern and manage themselves (or don’t!), particularly through periods of change.My long-time colleague, Jill Blair, recently wrote…

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How Foundations can Support Generating New Ideas & Engaging New Voices in Community Development

Posted by on May 29, 2019 in Articles, Blog

My experience working on community and economic development issues in mid-sized metropolitan areas around the country has taught me a couple of key lessons. It’s difficult to get traditional players to truly think outside of the proverbial box. Some places are insular and hesitant to look externally for ideas and learning. Local folks with new…

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Why it’s Important for Foundations to Align Their Investments with Their Values

Posted by on May 7, 2019 in Articles, Blog

When working with foundations in strategic planning or evaluation efforts, I always advise that we start with the organization’s values. What are the fundamental drivers of the foundation’s work, what it wants to achieve and how it will be successful in those efforts. In a recent conversation with Brad Norton, Director of Endowment Solutions, for Winfield…

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Supporting Innovation to Tackle Poverty

Posted by on Apr 16, 2019 in Articles, Blog

What was it that wise person once said about expecting different results from doing the same thing over and over again? Well, what would happen by coming at a particularly challenging issue like poverty from another angle? What would happen if you took a page from the handbook on entrepreneurship, injected the spirit of innovation…

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