Buzzwords: Synergy

If allowed to go unchecked, it could be the downfall of your team

Synergy, in the common lexicon, is the magic that makes collaborations more efficient, effective and profitable than individualized efforts. It originates from the Latin word synergia,meaning “cooperation.” You’re most likely to hear it used to describe the potential benefits of a collaborative or combined effort, like a strategic partnership, merger and acquisition, creative brainstorming session or co-branding effort.  

Apr 22, 2016 MaryJayne Zemer
Kate Towson of Women's Empowerment reacts to winning the $10,000 Judges Award at SVP's Fast Pitch, an event that rewards nonprofits with a plan.

More Than A Feeling

In the quest for funding, charitable organizations need more than a mission — they need a plan

For more and more investors and would-be funders, nonprofits need to have more than a worthy cause and a compelling mission: They need a plan. Specifically, they’re now being asked to showcase the same mindset that’s required of for-profit organizations, meaning that spreadsheets, metrics and core competencies can matter just as much as pulling the heartstrings.   

Apr 12, 2016 Jeff Wilser
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Dilemma of the Month: Saying ‘No’ to New Titles

How to tell an employee they aren't C-suite material

We are hiring for a new senior marketing position, and I decided to go with CMO for the title to help recruit a rock star from within our industry to potentially serve as my No 2. My director of fundraising, who I personally recruited four years ago, wants her title changed to Chief Advancement Officer for parity. She does good work but in my mind is not C-level material.

Apr 7, 2016 Suzanne Lucas

The Power of Failure

Getting it wrong builds resiliency, courage and confidence

Working hard to achieve something new should not be fodder for punitive action; it’s the maintenance of a poorly functioning status quo that should be looked at with a sideways glance. Perfection lives on the same continuum as failure. In life, as in work, we learn painfully but fully from our failures — that is when we grow.

Mar 28, 2016 Tania Fowler
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Dilemma of the Month: When a Personal Matter Gets Professional

The less you trust your boss, the more honest you need to be

I am an exempt employee and have been working at my company for just under three years. I recently had a serious medical issue that required me to terminate a pregnancy for my own health. I’ve now had three doctor visits in comparatively short succession, and my supervisor is asking why. Since this is an incredibly personal matter, I’m wondering how much I am required to disclose?

Mar 3, 2016 Suzanne Lucas

The Masked Agitator

Don’t let toxic employees manipulate you into poor leadership

Toxic people don’t lack insight into their behavior — they lack motivation to change it. Instead, they spend their time gaming bosses, employees and jobs to their own advantage and the detriment of others. Leaders need to deal with them as soon as a problem arises with clear communication and accountability measures. If the bad behavior persists, they need to go.

Feb 15, 2016 Tania Fowler

Getting it Right, Right Away

Without a clear onboarding process, you risk losing new business

Sales and marketing can feel like a never ending marathon — as soon as you reach the finish line with one lead, there’s another sale to close. Even when all your hard work results in new sales, many businesses fumble when they pass the baton to engaging and welcoming the new client. The lack of a solid onboarding strategy can result in a rocky start to your relationship with clients, increased requests for refunds and decreased confidence in your business.

Jan 29, 2016 Kelly Azevedo
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Your Brand Needs a User Manual

Here’s a list of chapters to include

If brand is more than a logo, why are most brand books little more than a style guide? A style guide isn’t going to empower your employees to deliver on your brand’s promise, guard your brand’s differentiators, or make everyday decisions in line with your brand strategy.

Jan 19, 2016 MaryJayne Zemer
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When I Was Your Age…

Navigating the generation gap, again

People will inevitably adapt to the demands that new technologies bring. They say that children born today will never have to learn to drive a car. Instead, they will learn to do things no adult generation today can yet imagine. It has always been this way, since the first caveman discovered fire and invented tools. Each preceding generation has something to do with the inventions that are passed on to the next. So why all the intergenerational demonization?  

Jan 18, 2016 Tania Fowler
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Digital Hiring

Don't sink too much cash into online job sites

I’m overseeing the hire of a new leadership position. We want to post the position online, but there are so many options, including up-sells to “featured posting” and the like. How do I write a compelling job description that will attract top-notch potential employees, and how do I best use my dollars — some of these sites are expensive!

Jan 5, 2016 Suzanne Lucas