Organizational management for nonprofits

The Brief
This post comes from the RelSci 5, our weekly newsletter for and about nonprofit leaders. Its curated articles and insights revolve around a different theme each week and will help you do your job better. This week’s theme is Best (Organizational) Behavior. Sign up for the RelSci 5 ?here.


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1. 6 improvements you need to make before your next meeting. Ah, the staff meeting. Is there anything so yawn-inducing as that weekly/monthly/quarterly snoozefest? Fortunately, you can stop wasting everyone’s time with a few tweaks to your meeting’s structure—for starters, take a second look at its structure. Here are 6 easy-to-implement guidelines.

 2. Mo-tivation. Regardless of mission, phase of development or attitudes toward upper-lip facial hair, all NPOs can learn a thing or two about marketing strategy and donor interaction from The Movember Foundation, which began as a quasi-social experiment among 30 friends in Australia in 2003, went international within three years, and is now a world leader in men’s health advocacy.

 3. No more surprises. Running complex campaigns is as much about trusting your team as it is about delegation or skill sets. But even your top performers may be telling you only half the story at your status meetings. Overconfidence regarding deliverables and timelines can torpedo a project, but before you can address blown deadlines, you’ll need to accept a few “inconvenient truths” about status reporting. 

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4. What these 7 women can teach you. When Business Insider released its list of “7 Powerful Women To Watch In 2014“, we were struck by how deftly these female leaders crossed sectors and industries to create innovative products, solutions and social change. And when we looked at their networks, it became obvious how critical relationship capital is to the growth and development of any organization, for-profit or non-profit. 

 5. Holacracy: myths and legends. When Zappos adopted the holacracy organizational structure—a hierarchical system without titles that stresses self-management—earlier this year, it made some waves among people who care about things like that. (Like us!) But what does it look like in the trenches—er—”circles?” It looks like this. (Read before reorging, please.)

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