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We need a new model for positive social impact

The further I get in my career, the more I catch myself processing and integrating within myself all the experiences I’ve had so far – and then drawing conclusions about what it all means, and what is most important for me to work on next. 

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Everyone Leads: Top 5 leadership lessons from a mid-career professional

I have been working in nonprofits for almost a decade. I can’t believe I am saying that out loud! Now that you all know I am getting old (not too old), I wanted to share a few insights on lessons learned. In the nonprofit sector, it can sometimes feel like you are giving too much of yourself. Program participants are draining you emotionally, someone is out-hustling you at work, money is tight at your organization, the community needs more than you have to offer and there is never enough time in the day to get everything done. I most certainly have felt all of these things and more. What I have learned from my time in nonprofits is that Everyone Leads.

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Lucky 13

There is so much I’ve been able to take away from the various nonprofits I’ve been involved with. I have worked several jobs outside the nonprofit social sector that were enjoyable, but when I found nonprofits whose missions I could align with, I found careers.

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Nonprofits, why do you need an audit? An auditor’s advice.

Is your nonprofit organization required to have a financial statement audit for the first time? If so, the information below will help you gain an understanding of what to do before, during and after the audit.

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Tinder for the apocalypse

I was recently told that I am a negative person. As a Positive Person™ I was, of course, appalled by the idea. Faced with this shocking news, I contorted my face into what could be graciously interpreted as a smile and objected with good humor. While this came as a blow to the innermost core of my being, the biggest challenge was that I was locked in a cabin with this person. Or rather, it would have been, had my close friends and partner not been there to back me up with the reality check I needed.

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What I’ve learned from three years of leadership breakfasts

You might be familiar with YNPN’s Leadership Breakfast series where a different nonprofit leader hosts a group of 20 YNPN members to talk about their leadership journey and share some of the lessons they’ve learned. If you aren’t, you’re missing out!

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Dating for nonprofit professionals: it's complicated

I align with 30 Rock heroine, Liz Lemon, on most things. I, too, have a penchant for comedy and would prefer to spend my free evenings “working on my night cheese.” One place I can really relate to Liz is in her jaded stance on romantic relationships, and the fact her job often stands in the way of pursuing them. But before this blog turns into a missive on my love for 30 Rock, let me backup a little and tell you more about my decidedly non-sitcom life.

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On fundraising and the white savior complex

White people, we need to talk. Despite our talk of equity and inclusion, there is an insidious thing happening. Nonprofit fundraising still hinges on a relic of white supremacy that it seems white people are just not willing to quit.

I’m talking about the white savior complex, discussed in Nonprofit Quarterly here. The article quotes Teju Cole, who describes a white savior as someone who “supports brutal policies in the morning, founds charities in the afternoon, and receives awards in the evening.”

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How can you benefit from a peer mentor circle?

(A huge thank you to Lindsay Bacher, Sarah Sheldon, and Kristin Swedlund for sharing their reflections on our Peer Mentor Circle with me while I was preparing to write this blog.)

Looking for a mentor, but don’t have connections to anyone “high up” in their career? Consider forming a “Peer Mentor Circle.” What is a Peer Mentor Circle, you ask? I like to think of it as similar to a book club, but is made up of a small group of peers who have come together to act as mentors for one another.

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All the friends you didn’t know you had

There’s been a lot of really great content on the YNPN-TC blog recently; insightful, powerful, personal writing about the pressing needs of our times and the practical challenges faced in nonprofit career development. Coupled with the fact that March 20 is World Storytelling Day, I want to take a slightly different tack and talk a little bit about self-care and continued inspiration. Specifically, through podcasts.

Take a deep breath.

Imagine putting on your headphones.

And whatever you have to do, whether powering through a grant report, or logistics for a donor event, or even just your daily commute, let that melt away as you drop into a story or conversation. Experience some other perspective, get inspired, figure out how something works – that’s fuel for moving forward.

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