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Weekend Link Roundup (July 14-15, 2012)

July 15, 2012

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

Communications/Marketing

Network for Good's Katya Andresen shares a list of thirteen signs your Web site might be out of date. The list, which was originally posted on the Branded Out Loud blog, includes:

  • The calendar widget on your site resembles an actual calendar;
  • "WELCOME" appears anywhere on your site;
  • There are more than eight menu options or drop-downs with their own drop-downs; and
  • Stock photos on your site are not connected to your organization's mission, or the photos don't load properly.

Impact/Effectiveness

On the Huffington Post Impact blog, Global Philanthropy Group president Trevor Neilson has three recommendations for nonprofits worried that it's only a matter of time before the economy -- and their fundraising results -- take a turn for the worse: think "different" about fundraising; decide what not to do; and value performance over passion.

Guest blogging on Beth's blog, GreatNonprofits chief executive Perla Ni and Family Independence Initiative vice president Mia Birdsong discuss the importance of listening and responding to feedback from the people being served by your nonprofit. "With a good feedback system in place programs can be held accountable to those they serve," write Ni and Birdsong. "Consumers will see that their voices make a difference when programs are adjusted and measures of success redefined in response to feedback....Nonprofits will benefit from detailed information about program strengths and shortcomings....And everyone wins when programs become more efficient and effective, improving program quality and outcomes."

Leadership

Rosetta Thurman, co-author of How to Become a Nonprofit Rockstar (with Trista Harris), has a few suggestions for young nonprofit professionals on how "to handle slip-ups with maturity in the nonprofit workplace."

Nonprofit Management

In the latest installment of her Social Good podcast series, Allison Fine chats with former Apple creative director Ken Segall, author of Insanely Simple: The Obsession That Drives Apple's Success, about how nonprofits can "create a culture of simplicity in their organizations."

Philanthropy

in an e-mail to Council on Foundation members and colleagues, Vikki Spruill, the council's new president and CEO, shares her vision for organized philanthropy. "Philanthropy has a proud legacy and an awe-inspiring focus on the future," Spruill writes,

but its most critical moment is right now. At a time when our world faces a storm of converging challenges with dwindling resources, philanthropy's positive impact remains a mystery to far too many. Swirling through this storm is a lack of understanding about the role philanthropy plays in society as investor, innovator, leader, and partner. Yet we all know philanthropy is more relevant and necessary than ever. That's why we must seize the imperative to help society better understand philanthropy's impact and contributions. If we can't imagine a world without philanthropy, we need to make sure those outside our sector recognize what an unlivable world that would be....

Poverty

The folks at liberal think tank Demos have posted a series of charts that break down the poverty rate in America by race, gender, education, age, and family type and finds that it's highest among single female-headed households with kids -- a fact explored with great skill and empathy by this article in today's New York Times.

Social Innovation

On the Social Velocity blog, Nell Edgington shares ten great social innovation reads from the month of June. We agree with Nell: Better late than never.

Strategy

On FSG's Social Impact Blog, Rebecca Graves explains why strategic clarity is important for community foundations. "Community foundations wrestle with an incredible array of decisions about how best to support their communities, advance solutions to complex social problems, and craft the right role for themselves," writes Graves. "[And] disciplined strategic thinking is essential to address these challenges. It helps [community foundations] articulate a clear and unique identity, become more aligned in pursuit of [their] goals, and define the right types of growth...."

Transparency

And on the Center for Effective Philanthropy blog, CEP president Phil Buchanan suggests that the philanthropic sector is unlikely to "make real progress on meaningful transparency -- transparency that gets to effectiveness and improvement -- externally until we deal with the challenge of being transparent first at home, with staff and colleagues...."

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

-- The Editors

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