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interSector Partners: Take Five, it’s Friday

February 3rd, 2017 11:58am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

A weekly(-ish) roundup of what what’s new or newsworthy with us, our clients, our partners and friends.

If we tell you how boring this week’s Take Five will be, will you read it? Turns out, not everything is earth-shattering, or even very interesting, yet is important nonetheless. 

1. Boring, but important. The IRS has released an updated 990-EZ Short Form Return of Organizational Exempt from Income Tax along with “assistive pop-up information.” Yes, we subscribe to the EO Update: e-News for Charities & Nonprofits (because we’re extra fun like that!) and you can, too.

2. Still boring, but quite helpful. The IRS provides life cycle content for nonprofits to understand the necessary filing requirements and forms. Whether starting out or ...

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interSector Partners: Take Five, it’s Friday

January 20th, 2017 12:42pm - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

A weekly(-ish) roundup of what what’s new or newsworthy with us, our clients, our partners and friends.

Change is all around us; in fact it’s known to be “the only constant…” This week we focus on the importance of adapting to change for sustainability.

1.       Expanding, contracting, adding or adjusting. interSector had the pleasure of working with the Metro Volunteers board of directors and staff as they explore opportunities to enhance services to meet changing community needs. Looking forward to a front row seat as the new vision comes to life.

2.       Seeing the writing on the wall – and getting out ahead of it. Two years ago, Planned Pare ...

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interSector Partners: Take Five, it’s Friday

January 6th, 2017 10:45am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

A weekly(-ish) roundup of what what’s new or newsworthy with us, our clients, our partners and friends makes its return in 2017. Did you miss it? We know we did!

Since it’s a new year, we thought it was a good time to take stock:

1.       interSector reserves the last week of December to plan for the coming year and beyond. In 2017, you’ll hear more about our continued professional development, a new Web site, how we’re managing time, program transitions and, most excitingly, interSector Partners 2.0. Stay tuned…

2.       We each have 8,760 hours in any given year. What are you going to do with yours? We’re loving the 8,760 Hours tool to help you reflect, consider the ideal you, address your concerns about succ ...

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Nonprofits need to be more business-like

February 1st, 2012 10:45am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

Nonprofits need to be more “business-like” – There, I said it.

If the recent decision by Susan G. Komen Foundation to defund Planned Parenthood’s cancer screening services to low-income women tells us anything, it’s that donors drive how nonprofits deliver on their missions.

When will the sector finally understand that a more sustainable path is open to them? Rather than begging for funds, changing policies based on political whims or creating programs to access new donations, let’s get focused on the business at hand.

Earned income strategies and social enterprise solutions are not only possible for nonprofits, they are essential for survival. An entire world of opportunity awaits the organizations that are willing to set aside the traditional donor-focused fundraising universe and focus on business metrics and strategies for sustainability.

I've made my last apology for saying that nonprofits ne ...

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To Engage or not to Engage

July 25th, 2011 4:22pm - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

Question during an interSector training on stakeholder engagement:

“What do you do if you work for a nonprofit with a visionary, innovative, entrepreneurial executive director who doesn’t believe that we need to ask our stakeholders for their opinions?”

Good question, eh?

What do you think?

Are there times when you don’t need to engage stakeholders? Times when you do?

And, does it have anything to do with whether your organization’s leadership thinks they have it covered?

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The Consulting Rodeo

May 26th, 2011 7:19pm - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

A while back a nonprofit client said, “I can tell this ain’t your first rodeo.” His fellow board members, Rick and I all had a knowing chuckle—yes, you are right. We’ve done this before. We’ve helped a group like yours with similar problem like yours; several times, in fact. We bring their experiences to helping you through yours. We understand and know just what to do…

I know that this board member made the rodeo statement with the most positive of intentions. He was simply shining a light on our expertise and using a humor to make light of their tough circumstances. And it worked.

But, it also got me thinking about two ends of the consulting continuum:

1.  Making sure the client feels comfortable and confident in your ability to help them through this (often) common issue, problem or situation they are not sure how to face. You can help because you’ve seen this thing many times, yo ...

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A picture's worth a big ole bunch of words

January 6th, 2011 9:59am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

In the nonprofit sector, we’re good with words. We can pound out 40-page federal grant proposals in a day. We write annual appeals, annual reports, board updates and program brochures in our sleep.

Yet I am continually reminded of the incredible power of translating our words into images that can make our point clearly, simply and easily. Here’s the wordy version of my epiphany:

We all know that donor motivations are changing. This is our work, our field. We know that they want more data. We know that they have been schooled in the importance of evaluation and outcomes. We’re aware that more and more opportunities are available to our donors each and every day – to give to other organizations, but most of all to invest in causes they truly care about.

Much has been written and shared at conferences about this phenomenon, yet when I talk with boards of directors I sometimes hear: “Yes, this is what our staff has been ...

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Caring about the "Duty of Care"

September 28th, 2010 12:21pm - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

I’ll fess up. While facilitating a board retreat recently, a board member asked a question, and I looked at my watch. We were running behind , and I was a bit nervous about getting through the agenda.

I should have noticed my own behavior first, but it took hearing an audible sigh from a fellow board member during the clarifying question for the reality of the situation to hit me full force. Both this sighing director and I were feeling anxious (even frustrated?) about this director’s attempt to understand the information he was expected to make decisions about.

Now, maybe the questioning director should have known the answers. Maybe the board discussed the topic in depth at a meeting this person didn’t attend. Maybe the information was in the board’s advance reading materials. It’s possible that the board answered this question 5 minutes ago when the director was playing on his iPhone.

Bu ...

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Yes, Virginia, there are Potential Board Members

July 19th, 2010 10:29am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

Last week, 75 people attended Social Venture Partners Boulder County’s Boulder County Board Match (www.svpbouldercounty.org). The brainchild of SVP partner, Dennis Berry, and executive director, Jennie Arbogash, this was the first ever Boulder County event designed to combine training and an opportunity to meet with nonprofits directly to discuss open board positions.

It was a hot day.  It was July—notorious for low attendance due to vacations and the various commitments that summer brings. It was free which sometimes results in high RSVPs and low turnout. And, because it was the first offering of this event, people didn’t know what to expect.

Yet, they came—75 of them (did I say that already?!). They listened. They asked great questions of the trainers and panelists. They learned (according to their evaluations!). They met with nearly 30 nonprofits at the Board Ma ...

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Ashoka's CYC to Change Your Nonprofit?

June 8th, 2010 9:11am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

 Applying the CYC Principles for Impact at Your Organization
 

Ashoka’s Change Your City Denver is rolling into my own backyard and it got me thinking...what if nonprofits applied the CYC principles to move the needle on a specific challenge or opportunity within their own organization?   More specifically, what if you spearheaded a concerted effort at your nonprofit that focused on one issue for a set period of time? Could you make a difference—an impact—if ...

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Posted in: Innovation, Nonprofit

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