Nonprofit Management

Top 10 Tips for Building a Culture of Development

This list was first presented with Kevin Flynn, Commongood Careers, as a part of the 2015 Massachusetts Nonprofit Network Conference.

Respect the Craft: A strong development professional is bringing skills, knowledge and expertise to the table. Always try to understand and learn from it, even when it goes against your instincts and comfort zone.


You Can’t […]

By |October 21st, 2015|Nonprofit Management|Comments Off on Top 10 Tips for Building a Culture of Development

The best lessons from the worst bosses

I’ve worked for a lot of bosses in my career, and have also heard war stories from friends, colleagues, and clients. A good boss is golden, but a bad boss will teach you so much about life, leadership, and organizations. When you are in the thick of it with a bad boss, it can […]

By |September 23rd, 2015|Nonprofit Management|Comments Off on The best lessons from the worst bosses

Does Your Nonprofit Care About Families? Why Parental Leave Matters

Parental leave can be a tough topic for nonprofit organizations facing real budget limitations and working to execute important missions with a small team. It’s hard to imagine doing without a full-time staff member for three months, let alone continuing to pay that person’s salary while they are gone.


At the same time, it astounds […]

By |September 17th, 2015|Nonprofit Management|Comments Off on Does Your Nonprofit Care About Families? Why Parental Leave Matters

Four Leadership Lessons for Tough Times

All organizations go through tough times now and then. Budgets fall short. Leaders leave, sometimes abruptly. A new project or initiative is a flop. These are all normal aspects of working reality and leadership.
When faced with a tough time, it’s easy to go to your bad place, whatever that place is. Maybe you are […]

By |September 8th, 2015|Nonprofit Management|Comments Off on Four Leadership Lessons for Tough Times

5 Signs You Were Born to Raise Funds

“You’re a FUNDRAISER?”


“Gosh, what a hard job!”


“I HATE asking for money.”


These are just a few of the common reactions I get when I tell people that my job involves fundraising. To be clear, my most recent role at Opportunity Nation was focused on developing large-scale strategic partnerships that often involve both cash and […]

By |June 9th, 2015|Nonprofit Management|Comments Off on 5 Signs You Were Born to Raise Funds

It’s not a 4-letter word

“I just can’t say NO.”

How many times have you heard this lament from someone who was stressed, overwhelmed, and overcommitted?   As a fundraiser, relationship manager, and a parent of a three year old, the word NO is a part of my life. I hear it and say it on a daily basis – […]

By |November 20th, 2014|Motherhood, Nonprofit Management, Random Thoughts|2 Comments

The Johnny Reads by Third Grade Syndrome

Here’s the story of Johnny: Poor Johnny didn’t know how to read.  And now he does.


Here are the things that helped him:

Free breakfast at school so he wasn’t so hungry that he couldn’t learn
Training provided to his teacher about supporting literacy
Training provided to his principal that encouraged him/her to provide training to the teacher
A […]

By |July 10th, 2013|Nonprofit Management|1 Comment

The darker side of social change

Lately, the non-profit sector has been depressing me, which is a challenge because it’s the sector I have committed the last 15 years of my life to serve. And I feel like a traitor articulating this depression out loud.  Non-profit folks are supposed to be eternally hopeful, selfless, and optimistic change agents or martyrs […]

By |July 8th, 2013|Nonprofit Management|Comments Off on The darker side of social change

Hold ’em or fold ’em: When to look for a new job

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, younger baby boomers have held, on average, 11 jobs between ages 18 and 44. This same cohort has experienced, on average, 5.2 spells of unemployment. While the numbers for Millennials might adjust slightly up or down, this data drives home two simple facts:

Over the course of your […]

By |June 25th, 2013|Nonprofit Management|Comments Off on Hold ’em or fold ’em: When to look for a new job

Secrets to a Happy Fundraising Career (and a sane one too)

Development professionals are a unique breed.  We are a critical part of any nonprofit organization yet our work lives are necessarily externally facing.  We face intense pressures and high expectations, and while we are (often) compensated well for it, it takes its toll.  Within organizations, there are a lot of negative myths and misperceptions […]

By |June 18th, 2013|Nonprofit Management|1 Comment