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Just Read: The Networked Nonprofit

August 4, 2010
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The Networked Nonprofit

Just finished an amazing book by two leaders in the nonprofit world, The Networked Nonprofit by Beth Kanter and Allison Fine

This book outlines what a nonprofit will look like in the future, including current trends and success stories. Even though it is written by people who focus on the use of technology in the nonprofit industry, this is far more than a book about how to use emerging technologies. It gets to the core of what it will take to be a viable organization, in one word, it is collaboration.

Rallying your supporters, working with like minded organizations to create greater change, and becoming more transparent are just a few of the things touched on. I really appreciated breaking organiztions into three categories when it comes to transparency: Fortress, Transactional, and Transparent. Guess which one is best. ūüôā

I am definitely going to pass this book around my organization and suggest everyone read it. So go read, learn, and love.

Get it from Amazon.com:
The Networked Nonprofit: Connecting with Social Media to Drive Change

Kindle Version:
The Networked Nonprofit: Connecting with Social Media to Drive Change

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Just Watched: Exit Through the Gift Shop

July 28, 2010

Banksy_Exit

I cannot say enough good things about Banksy’s Exit through the Gift Shop.¬† I love documentaries, street art, and comedy, the movie included all of these, so I was a happy little camper.

Beyond the entertainment value, the movie really got me thinking about many things.¬† The first of which is, perception is reality. In the movie Theirry “Mr Brainwash” Guetta (MBW)¬†is able to convince people that he is the next big thing in art, before he actually produces anything.¬†MBW was able to get a cover article in LA Weekly before he ever hung a piece of art in a gallery. Through relentless and shameless self promotion MBW made himself a big deal.

To me, a lesson can be taken from MBW for all businesses and NGOs, if you want to be important and recognized, make yourself important and recognizable. Repetition is vitally important, and some over the top antics don’t hurt either.

The other thing I was reminded of after watching Exit is that art is a sham. This has been said by many.  Banksy, more than any other artist in the past decade has really made people question what is art? This movie continues to leave the viewer asking.

Actually the movie leaves viewers asking if the film, the story, and Mr. Brainwash are even real or just pawns in Banksy’s latest prank.¬† To me, it doesn’t matter, I enjoyed it. And I think that is what the biggest take-away from Exit should be… create art, buy art, and view art based on what you personally like.¬† Art is inside of us.

Watch the Trailer:

Just Read: Managing Technology to Meet Your Mission

July 23, 2010

Managing Technology to Meet your Mission

I just finished reading Managing Technology to Meet Your Mission edited by Holly Ross, Katrin Verclas, and Alison Levine.  This is a great read for all nonprofit organizations, it handles all aspects of technology and IT.  It goes through planning processes, how to evaluate software and hardware, how to get staff on board, how to hire the right people, and online communications.

Technology planning must be an integral part of every nonprofit (every organization for that matter) if they plan on surviving longer than the megalodon.

Get this book into the hands of your executive directors, get the buy in, and start working smarter, more efficiently while making deliberate, planned technology decisions.

Get it from Amazon.com:
Managing Technology to Meet Your Mission: A Strategic Guide for Nonprofit Leaders

Kindle Version:
Managing Technology to Meet Your Mission: A Strategic Guide for Nonprofit Leaders

Moving Forward – Slowly

July 23, 2010
Highmark Caring Place

Highmark Caring Place

For the past 5 years I have been working at the Highmark Caring Place, which is a center for grieving children, adolescents and their families.  We provide support to children and families after they experience the death of a loved one.

In that time, we have had two executive directors, each with very different styles (one very hands on and one very hands off) and I have answered to 3 different bosses.  One of the things that I have grown to appreciate is our effort to continue to move forward as an organization.  Being involved in creating our core values as an organization, I have had the opportunity to get to the heart of what we do and spending time with the children and families I have seen the results of our hard work.

Recently I lead a charge to redesign our website (www.highmarkcaringplace.com).  Our old site was difficult to update and had remained pretty static for the previous 3 years. Now that the site is up, we still need to work out how to keep it fresh and updated.  The good news is that the site is more fluid than the previous version and can be navigated more easily. 

Now, after about 3 years of jumping up and down and waving my hands,  we are finally moving into the scary world of social media. It has taken much preparation to get the organization ready to make the jump, we are almost ready to make that leap.  The way nonprofits use technology is something I get excited about.  Doing the research to prove it is necessary is less exciting, but I have discovered so much more than I already knew.  As we continue to move forward I will update on our progress.

Causes is a cause to smile

July 7, 2010

Get your good on!

Can one person make a difference?¬† Can one website make a difference?¬† I answer yes and yes.¬† While they probably can’t do it alone, someone needs to be the squadron leader against the death star and someone needs to go ahead of the pack and fire the proton torpedoes.¬† Enter Causes.com.¬†

Nonprofit Love

July 6, 2010

5 years of working with nonprofits full time and I think I’m here to stay. There is so much good going on around the world. Lost out of college like most art school graduates, I’m happy that I ended up where I did. My passion was ignited by nTen, a great organization showing how to harness technology to full support the work of good people. Keep fighting the good fight.The nTen Logo

Posting from Email

July 6, 2010

I’m getting a handle on this whole wordpress blog. Really though, a blog needs to be more about content, than about design or features. However, I did go to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, where design and features are placed above content.