The Importance of Self Awareness & Self Care for Success As A Nonprofit Professional

The Importance of Self Awareness & Self Care for Success As A Nonprofit Professional
If you read my last post, you know that understanding your own needs in supervision and your organization’s culture are significant factors in your success as a new nonprofit professional. In Part Two, you’ll learn the importance of self-awareness and self care in achieving your career goals. You’ve started your new job and begun learning the organization’s policies and procedures. You’re beginning to understand how your position fits in with the mission you and your team are working to ... Read more
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What About You and the Leaders You Meet?

What About You and the Leaders You Meet?
The fact is, when you have a job, you are going to run into bad leaders. Why? Because leadership is difficult. Even for those with natural leadership ability, it is not easy. As the saying goes, “People quit their bosses, not their jobs.” In earlier posts, I wrote about two extremes of leadership: the good and the bad. This post is about you and what you do with the leaders you meet: 1) Be reasonable in your own expectations; but 2) Remove yourself from a bad situation when you can. Don’t ... Read more
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Happy Equal Pay Day! The 78 Percent Holiday.

Happy Equal Pay Day! The 78 Percent Holiday.
April 14, 2015 is an important date for the progression of women in the workforce, if not a particularly joyous occasion. This date symbolizes the number of days that the average female employee must work to earn what her male colleagues earned in the last calendar year. That means that women must work over three months longer in order to bring home the paycheck amount that their male counterparts saw at the end of last year. Women have certainly made progress in the workforce. President ... Read more
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Frances Perkins: The Architect of our Social Safety Net

Frances Perkins: The Architect of our Social Safety Net
Frances Perkins was the first female member of a Presidential cabinet in the United States and today is the 135th anniversary of her birth. She served as Secretary for Labor from 1933 to 1945 under President Franklin D. Roosevelt. A social worker by training, Perkins was a staunch advocate for workers’ rights and was the chief architect of New Deal legislation including the Social Security Act. She chaired the President’s Committee on Economic Security in 1934 and was relentless in her ... Read more
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Things New Nonprofit Professionals Should Consider (Part One)

Things New Nonprofit Professionals Should Consider (Part One)
You’ve graduated from college and/or grad school and landed your dream job making a difference at your local nonprofit. You’re ready to change the world – and you will! Here are two factors to consider which will lead to your long-term success in the rewarding world of nonprofit work. Know what you need in supervision. Supervision is one of the most crucial elements of your success as a new nonprofit professional. It’s important to think about what you need from the start. The easiest way ... Read more
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A Frog a Day Takes the Procrastination Away

A Frog a Day Takes the Procrastination Away
Mark Twain once advised to “eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.” This may seem like a strange sentiment but it can unlock significant productivity power in your work day. I actually have a sign in my office reminding me to eat the frog, and I’m constantly questioned about it’s meaning. We all have frogs—those things we simply dread doing. Frogs are the items on your to-do list that make you cringe. They must get done although ... Read more
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Do You Know a Good Leader When You See One?

Do You Know a Good Leader When You See One?
My earlier post identified leadership as the good, the bad, and you. I wrote about six behaviors typical of bad leaders. While the opposite of my six observations of the bad are a place to start, there will be no getting off easy for me. Here are my top six qualities of good leaders. You work hard to build trust and earn respect. Sure, your team will trust you at the start, and your leadership role comes with some built-in respect. But strong leaders work continuously to prove themselves. ... Read more
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Leadership: The Good, the Bad, and You

Leadership: The Good, the Bad, and You
For simplicity’s sake, we can boil leadership down to: the good, the bad, and you. This is the first of three posts to cover all three. When the topic of leadership comes up, most people think first about “bad bosses” — they skip right over the good, to the bad. So here goes, I’ll use this first post to explore bad leadership. Really, is there anything left to write about bad leadership? I’ve been known to say that every problem within an organization can be tied back to a lack of ... Read more
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Stress Carriers

Stress Carriers
We all know one or two of them. They may be a friend, relative or co-worker. What they have in common is that they scatter stress like Tinkerbell scatters fairy dust. They are stress carriers. They often appear friendly and helpful, but they have a knack — and perhaps the intention — of making others feel inadequate or upset. They also are skillful at shifting their work or worries to others smoothly that you are left wondering how it happened. It is easy to recognize a stress ... Read more
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Stepping Out and Stepping Up for Opportunity

Stepping Out and Stepping Up for Opportunity
At 2am four years ago, I responded to a general post seeking volunteer tennis coaches. I was about to finish graduate school and had coached sporadically for seven years, so I thought this could be a fun, interim experience. For the next two hours, I emailed back and forth with Vi, the person who posted the ad. She had just started a new NGO that delivered tennis programming to kids who live on the Southside of Chicago. I naturally was curious about this person who was up so late at night ... Read more
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