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Weekend Link Roundup (July 9 - 10, 2011)

July 10, 2011

Sunflower_partial Our weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Arts and Culture

The Createquity Arts Policy Library has been revived, with new posts from the library's three fellows -- Aaron Andersen, Jennifer Kessler, and Crystal Wallis -- who take an in-depth look at research on our "cultural rights"; informal arts; and the impact of arts education.

Communications/Marketing

On her Non-Profit Marketing blog, Katya Andresen explains why listening is the "most underrated skill in the world." Writes Andresen, "The most successful people in the world are all great listeners….They're so good at hearing, they don't just listen to the words being said by others, they also grasp the meaning beneath those utterances. They therefore understand what people want, and they build great companies, amazing nonprofits, and terrific agencies based on that knowledge."

Community Improvement/Development

On his Inside Philanthropy blog, Todd Cohen makes a case for the creation of pooled funds to help nonprofits across the country struggling to make ends meet. "After the economy broke down nearly three years ago, organizations and individuals in some communities stepped up and created pooled funds to support basic and emergency services that nonprofits provide to people in need," writes Cohen. "The creation of those funds reflected true leadership and commitment, and can be a model for establishing funds to provide the operating support that nonprofits desperately need now."

After the Wall Street Journal suggested in a lengthy article that ran over the Fourth of July weekend that the deep-pocketed Kresge Foundation was rethinking its efforts to revive the fortunes of Detroit after run-ins with Mayor Dave Bing and City Hall officials, Jonathan Oosting reports in Mlive.com that the foundation has no plans "to withdraw financial support for either the Detroit Works Project or Woodward Light Rail line."

Environment

Idealist.org's Julia Smith, whom we spoke with in May as part of our "social media for social good" video series, has a few tips for jobseekers interested in "green" jobs.

Fundraising

On his Future Fundraising Now blog, Jeff Brooks shares some reservations about mobile giving campaigns. "Unless you're the Red Cross and have the First Lady and every other celebrity pushing it for you," says Brooks, "the potential is painfully low."

Leadership

Center for Effective Philanthropy president Phil Buchanan takes a closer look at the new Daring to Lead report (18 pages, PDF), which found that 67 percent of nonprofit leaders "plan to leave" their jobs in the next five years. Over the past ten years, the Daring to Lead series, which is produced by CompassPoint and the Meyer Foundation, has predicted a "'wave' of impending transitions in leadership," writes Buchanan. But while the percentage in the 2011 report is "a high number…experience seems to suggest a significant gap between the survey results…and what actually happens."

Philanthropy

On the Tactical Philanthropy blog, Darin McKeever of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation describes how the foundation came up with a new strategy for its Charitable Sector Support initiative.

Regulation/Oversight

Guidestar's Bob Ottenhoff says "it's time to change which kind of organizations are eligible for a tax exemption." College booster clubs and big football bowls are just a couple of the types of organizations that should have their status revoked, says Ottenhoff. To help address the nation's budget crises, Ottenhoff also suggests cutting back tax expenditures: "deductions -- or loopholes -- that lower tax obligations, thereby reducing the amount of revenue going to the Treasury...."

Social Media

On her Nonprofit Tech 2.0 blog, Heather Mansfield has a few tips for nonprofits that are ready to think globally. Writes Mansfield: "The world is getting smaller with each passing day, and nonprofits as the agents of social good, should try to think bigger and stretch their Twitter wings beyond their own time zones."

The launch last week of the Google+ social networking platform generated a fair amount of comment in the nonprofit blogosphere. On the NTEN blog, Amy Sample Ward shared a few thoughts about the platform's privacy settings and how the site might benefit nonprofit professionals and their organizations, while Zoetica co-founder Geoff Livingston warned that yet another new social networking site means nonprofits will be encouraged to "spread the peanut butter a little thinner" instead of focusing "on the networks that have the most impact on their community."

That's it for now. What did we miss? Drop us a line at rnm@foundationcenter.org. And have a great week!

-- Regina Mahone

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