Life in the nonprofit sector is challenging. The pay is often low, the challenges are high, and burnout is a real and serious concern. Many people come to YNPN looking for insight about how to succeed in this challenging field. Proactive workers looking for ways to excel can have an especially difficult time accepting that they don’t have total control over their own destiny in an organization. The reality is that your boss or supervisor holds the keys to a prosperous or painful path, and they need to want you to succeed if you’re to shine.
As the person who dictates your duties, evaluates your performance, and has the final say on whether to pursue the ideas and projects you propose, your boss is a critical figure in your professional life. It benefits you to do what you can to encourage a positive relationship. But sometimes it can feel like you’re on different teams, despite both of you working for the same organization with the same mission.Read more
YNPN Twin Cities turns ten this year, and it’s no secret that we love GIFS. We probably love GIFS a little too much, but that’s a discussion for another time. To celebrate ten years of providing and promoting professional development opportunities for young nonprofit professionals, here’s ten GIFS about why you love YNPN Twin Cities.Read more
Fighting for a position to fight for people that need a better position is a real… well, fight. And, I don’t know how to do this. I don’t know all the questions to ask to move my organization’s mission forward. Or how best I can implement the ideas from the answers I come up with. I need others’ perspectives to understand what’s right, and to make sure what I am doing isn’t wrong. I need all the help I can get and I get the best tools for helping others from working with others. This is what I was hoping for when I applied for the YNPN-TC scholarship to the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits 2016 Nonprofit Essentials Conference, and this is what I experienced in spades.
As a fairly recent graduate and one of the newest additions to the local world of nonprofits, I am not wealthy. However, I do have a certain relationship to power that I didn’t have as a little kid in a working-poor family in South Minneapolis. Today, I have a role and an opportunity that I never imagined I’d have. I am an idealist at heart, but I understand the demand for practicality. I think this tension was masterfully named by the event’s keynote speaker, Dr. Vanjelis Ngwa in his deep exploration into the subtleties of power.Read more
Applying for grants can seem like a scary clown living under your bed. You don’t entirely understand how you were put in this situation, it can feel like there’s no one there to help you and there’s a lot of mystery to all of the logic involved. I hope to offer you some advice on how to navigate this process if you’re new to applications and if nothing else, hopefully some of this might get rid of Mr. Pennywise who’s below the mattress.Read more
Lately, I’ve been doing something that scares me. And I don’t mean "scare" like the stress from taking on a new responsibility at work; I mean pupil-dilating, limb-trembling, tunnel-vision fear. My personal kryptonite is public speaking, and regardless of preparation, I quake and barely remember what happened when I walk off the stage.
For this blog post, I was hoping to inspire everyone with my story of joining Toastmasters & tackling fear head on. There are so many work-ready platitudes out there about fear — "do one thing that scares you every day" or "face your fears" — I was sure there would be research showing that fear is somehow healthy, that it fires up our brains, that the adrenaline forces us to achieve.Read more
The schedule said the speaking event started at 5:30. I had a class at 6:30. If I left a little early, I could catch most of the panel on generational interaction in the workplace. I showed up a little before 5:30 and was ready to go.
But 5:30 rolled around, and it didn’t look like things were going to start anytime soon. 5:35 comes and goes and people are milling around, chatting and networking. I asked one of the people working the welcome table when the panel would start.Read more
Twenty-sixteen has been an incredible year for the Winegar household. In April, my husband and I celebrated a major milestone: We became parents. Our son, Garrett, is pretty awesome (#MomBrag) and he's definitely schooled us when it comes to parenting. There is undoubtedly a steep learning curve as any new parent will tell you, but while on maternity leave, I found there were four lessons I could aptly apply to my professional life, too.Read more
What was the last obstacle you faced, and how did you conquer it?
We overcome challenges every day and sometimes we don’t even realize it. Any time we are faced with a situation in which we don’t know the answer, it is often helpful to seek knowledge and resources from others.
I consider myself a resourceful person who does exactly that. When I don’t know a fact, my first response is “Oh, I’ll Google it.” If I don’t know how to complete a technical task, I watch tutorials on YouTube. If I can’t pinpoint the right word, I research synonyms at thesaurus.com.
And admittedly, when someone asks a seemingly easy question, my first thought is: “Have you looked it up?” In other words, I wonder if this person has tried to figure out the answer on their own prior to asking me. In fact, I even grow a bit impatient and annoyed if they haven’t.
But what happens when a solution cannot be readily met? What happens when the problem is bigger and more complex than a Google search or YouTube tutorial video? What happens when the problem is deeply rooted in a culture of privilege, hurt, or hate?
What then?Read more
YNPN Twin Cities mourns the death of Philando Castile and stands in solidarity with Diamond Reynolds, their family, friends and our community. We mourn Alton Sterling. We mourn Delrawn Small. We mourn Patrick Zamarripa, Brent Thompson, Lorne Ahrens, Michael Smith and Michael Krol - five Dallas police officers. We mourn for those whose lives were cut short because of racism. Our inability to name everyone impacted by the magnitude of hate is horrifying.
The events of the past few weeks have been dark and traumatizing for many in our communities and specifically people of color. We’re afraid. We’re afraid for our friends, for our families, and for our own lives. We’re heartbroken, afraid, angry, and outraged. People have felt a wide spectrum of emotions, demanding justice and wanting to do better for our community. We encourage you to take care of yourself, whatever that looks like. This includes self-care for people of color experiencing psychological trauma.
YNPN Twin Cities is committed to valuing inclusion, creating access, and honoring diversity. Our vision is a world where young nonprofit professionals connect through purpose, challenge to change, and lead together. Our values center on respect and inclusiveness, collaboration, and responding to the evolving needs of our community. As a community-first, community-led organization, we vow to actively support and promote leaders who are passionate about dismantling systemic racism.Read more
YNPN Twin Cities is full of incredible people doing incredible things. As a member, you have the opportunity to network and know people you may never otherwise had the chance to connect with. Our Member Spotlight series gives center stage to one of our own and the rest of us a chance to congratulate ourselves on joining a group with such talent. As always, if you have someone you’d like to nominate, let us know!
This month’s spotlight shines on Mallory Mitchell, development and events manager at the Ann Bancroft Foundation. Their mission is to create a world where every girl has the chance to live her dream and reach her full potential. They provide grants to girls ages 5 through high school graduation to realize a dream, encourage and support programs with girls’ organizations, and form strategic partnerships with corporations to meet these goals.Read more