Nonprofit Radio for April 15, 2016: 8 Areas of Nonprofit Excellence

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Michael Clark & Melkis Alvarez-Baez: 8 Areas of Nonprofit Excellence

The Nonprofit Coordinating Committee Excellence Awards are based on tough criteria that reveal the right way to run your organization in areas like fundraising; management; board; financial; and diversity. This is from the show on March 6, 2015, when Michael Clark was NPCC’s president, and Melkis Alvarez-Baez was their director of programs. They explain all the standards.


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Hello and welcome to tony martignetti non-profit radio big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent i’m your aptly named host it’s tax day. I hope that doesn’t make you cringe just think about next year when you’ll have until april seventeenth, two extra days next year see how generous the irs is to you. Oh, i’m glad you’re with me. I’d be thrown into thrombosis, ida pina, if you dealt me the low blow that you missed today’s show eight areas of non-profit excellence the non-profit coordinating committee excellence awards are based on tough criteria that revealed the right way to run your organization in areas like fund-raising management board, financial and diversity. This is the show from march six twenty fifteen, when michael clark was and pcc’s president and melkis alvarez-baez was their director of programmes. That explains all the standards on tony’s tech too our contributors, we’re sponsored by pursuant full service fund-raising data driven and technology enabled, you’ll raise more money pursuing dot com also by crowdster online and mobile fund-raising software for non-profits now with apple pay for mobile donations. Crowdster dot com here are michael clarke and melkis alvarez-baez with eight areas of non-profit excellence, i’m very glad teo welcome it’s, a pleasure to welcome michael clarke and melkis alvarez-baez to the show, michael is president of the non-profit coordinating committee of new york. He has thirty five years of training and experience in urban issues, public health and non-profit management, and they are at n pcc. And why on twitter melkis alvarez-baez, director of programmes at non-profit coordinating committee of new york, one of the programs she directs is the new york community trust non-profit excellence awards that we’re talking about today and she’s at melkis alvarez-baez michael melkis welcome to the show. Thank you for having us. Pleasure. Pleasure. Tio be able to spend the hour talking about some, i think extraordinary guidelines. Eight specific areas. That non-profits good. Very much benefit from michael, our president and pcc, new york. Where were these eight areas of excellence come from that? The awards are based on well, it’s. Funny. You should ask tony. We we actually little karin answer for that. I didn’t prepare nasco and not only prepared but it’s the truth. Ten years ago we looked around the country and we realised there are thirty six regional associate state and regional associations of non-profits like ours, representing a total of about twenty five thousand non-profit organizations and nineteen of them have developed their own standards for what are the key areas of management that you have to do really well, so that your organization performs at a high level and as a ceo so you don’t get fired. So the point is we took a look at those we identified even though they don’t quite agree with each other. We said we’re gonna fight eight areas that that they all had in common. Okay? And we decided to use those eight areas to build a slightly different kind of programme. Most of those are certification programs. You take a workshop, you passed the test, they say, okay, you’re certified in financial management. You certified in this, we thought we would create an aspirational program, one that really talks about what did the excellent practices and financial management look like? What did the excellent practices and communication look like? Because i think these days, most people are trying to figure out how to make the organization’s perform better. So these air guides to how to make your organization perform better in those areas and quite well detailed. We’re gonna have time since we have the full hour. Get into some of the detail of it. Um, now, only nineteen of the thirty eight organizations had had standards of sometime. That’s only that’s, only half. Yeah, that’s all within the last five or ten years. It’s a trend that they’re gradually developing these program or more. Yeah. No kisses, nothing. Yeah, i think last time i checked, it was actually twenty one of them that had some sort of standards program. It’s growing. I just came from our national conference, and we talked a lot there about standards of excellence programs and also about the excellence awards program and where they were one of only two organizations that has an excellence award. Strauss cool. All right, the other one is washington d c right now melkis this is a lot more than an awards ceremony, right? Maybe there’s let’s talk about the workshops that aaron get involved all year. You’re raising really the level of lots and lots of non-profits whether there in the awards competition or not. Yeah, we actually like to say that the awards is uneducated schnoll program disguised. As an awards program on and it’s quite lengthy process from march to november, culminating in that final award ceremony where we sort of announced three winners but really the entire process, even the application is meant to be educational for applicants, so that there’s something for all of the organizations that go through the process, even those that don’t win, right? And the idea is that by going through this application process, they’re learning about their management practices and how to improve them. At the end of each awards program, we also put on a siri’s of workshops that are actually going on. Now they’re called the pathways toe excellence workshops in the idea with those is to really disseminate the best management practices in each of these eight key areas that we’re going to talk about from past winners of the awards. And it was that award ceremony last november that motivated me tohave the two of you on the show because i was i just was so taken by how no, how the organizations had risen to the to the challenge of the eight areas that there were three organizations on stage, but i know there’s lots. Of lots of organizations a z i said, i mean, even even beyond the ones that are in the competition, there’s lots of organizations learning a lot about very, very good practices. Andi was just i hadn’t i hadn’t heard of the awards. Sorry to say i hadn’t heard of them before i was invited. Okay? All right, well, i’m too i’m helping you. We’re getting it out to ten thousand more people. Yeah, i was invited to go boyfriend hey. And i went and i really was was taken by the descriptions of the organizations out there with the three that were on the stage, the finalists and just the overall explanation of the eight areas. So welcome. I’m glad i’m glad i was there going. You’re the practices. The good thing about the program when you come to those awards and when you sit through the best practices workshop is you’re listening to people that have actually had to implement these things. Yes. So this is not somebody’s theory about how to do this stuff. This is this is just a lesson straight from the field, right? How they think it has a has a i think non-profit managers recognize that right away it has an authenticity that you wouldn’t necessarily see if you read a lot of books. There are something over seven million entries and google for non-profit excellence. Okay, it’s, a confusing world let’s start to get it let’s start to get into our eight because because there are eight, and i want it just as an overviewing i’m going to take them off, okay, if you’ll allow me great. So people know what’s what’s coming up, the first we’re going to talk about is effective and ethical fund-raising and resource development overall management focus on results, governance structure that moves the organization forward strong, transparent and accountable financial management, diversity and culturally competent organizational practices. Enlightened use of human resource is that’s interesting, enlightened use appropriate and reliable information technology it systems and regular ineffective communications and use of communications technology. That’s where we’re headed let’s start with thea the fund-raising and ethical effective unethical fund-raising and resource development let’s start with you, michael, the one of the things that there’s lots of bullets under all of them. And we obviously do not have time for all that for each bullet. That’s impossible, but let’s ah, let’s talk let’s. Look at a couple like fund-raising revenue streams are as diverse as possible. What are we looking for there? Why is it important? You’re looking for something that looks like a pyramid and a lot of non-profits finances looked like an inverted pyramid are the words you’re looking for some money coming from private donors, some money coming from foundations, some money coming from the government, some money coming from corporations and that there’s a very simple reason for that. If you have only one source revenue, then you’re extremely vulnerable to changes in politics or changes in foundation trends or changes in whatever that one sources so better toe have you that that’s very risky? Yes. So you you know, just to keep it to be a sustainable is posits a big word in the nonprofit sector. Sustainability to be a sustainable is possible. You want tohave as diverse range of sources of money as you can get the the board. So i’ll tell you what we’ll may well go back and forth. So you know michael will cover. Well, michael will cover the talk about the fund-raising and then melkis will do the next area. Okay, we’ll be all right. But then chime in two, you know, i mean, let’s have a conversation. I don’t mean to shut you off milk if you want to add something about effective ethical fund-raising please do. Okay, um, the board overall responsibility for raising funds to meet the organization’s needs the responsibility fund-raising resides with the board, michael, it actually does. You know, there are three basic principles built into non-profit law about what boardmember we’re supposed to do, and one of them is called the duty of care, and that involves making sure the organization is sustainable and has revenue. A lot of board members walk onto boards and never realized that we do a lot of training with board members and coaching on they say, really, i’m supposed to help them raise money? Absolutely it’s part of its part of the job of being a boardmember so, you know, boardmember is frequently represent very different kinds of backgrounds than the managers, but they bring a lot to the table, and we’re looking for one hundred percent annual giving on the board. A good standard is tohave one hundred percent above board giving something personally. Some board set up a number something just say, give something that’s meaningful to you, but somehow you one hundred percent giving you what that is that if your board members aren’t giving, then it’s hard to convince others to give to your organization. Sure, they’re your key, your key volunteers right there. You’re a prime stakeholders if they’re not doing it, why should others? Yeah, cool. Um, let’s say i’ll tell you what, let’s let’s go out on a break and when we come back, we’re going toe we’ll get through our next area, which is going to be overall management focused on results, and we’ve got six other areas after that, so hang there with us. You’re tuned to non-profit radio tony martignetti also hosts a podcast for the chronicle of philanthropy fund-raising fundamentals is a quick ten minute burst of fund-raising insights published once a month. Tony’s guests are expert in crowdfunding, mobile giving event fund-raising direct mail and donor cultivation. Really all the fund-raising issues that make you wonder am i doing this right? Is there a better way there is? Find the fund-raising fundamentals archive it tony martignetti dot com that’s marketmesuite n e t t i remember there’s, a g before the end, thousands of listeners have subscribed on itunes. You can also learn maura, the chronicle website, philanthropy dot com fund-raising fundamentals the better way. Welcome back to big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent let’s do live listener love let’s do it early because we got a lot manami wisconsin love it, my nominee. I love that st louis missouri would bury new jersey, new bern, north carolina will be there in a couple weeks in north carolina. Anyway, new york, new york live listener love to each of you will go abroad a little later on got to send out the podcast pleasantries, people listening in the time shift on any device, anytime podcast pleasantries to you and our affiliate affections love our affiliates throughout the country, lots of affection going out to them melkis let’s, look at this overall management focus on results and why a well defined mission statement is important. Yeah, i mean, i think mission statements contend to be kind of cloudy sometimes they’re up there, right? And this area really has to do with organizations defining the difference that they want to make people’s lives in the communities that they’re serving, and then setting sort of milestones and benchmarks to assess and track their own progress towards that difference right towards the impact that they ultimately. Want to it? See? And there’s a point made that it’s ah it’s. A well defined mission statement so narrowly focused. Ah, what else? Well defined geographical focus also, you know, in terms of when it comes to what the selection committee is looking for, a strong response in this in this question, they’re looking to get a sense from the mission statement. What an organization does, right. And ultimately, if an organization has to take a paragraph toe, explain what they do, then perhaps it’s worth revisiting the mission statement. Okay. You mentioned the selection committee. Who is the selection committee for the awards? Yeah. The selection committee is a group of about thirty two consultants non-profit leaders. That’s a big committee. Yeah, many of thirty two. Yep. And the idea is that we have about four people strong in each of these eight areas. Okay. Oh, i see. All right. So there’s target over their teams. Some committee’s subcommittee. Oh, excellent. Okay. Um, expert consultants and technical assistance air used when they’re needed. Yeah. What’s what’s a focus their you know, this is an area that can get really expensive, you know, to do long term evaluations for example, and so consultants provide a service that allows organizations toe improve upon this practice, especially if they can’t do it. I’m themselves. Last year, rome, new york, during their site visit, spoke about their use of consultants and row in new york was one of the three finalists. Yes, that i saw on the stage. Three winners for one of three winners, right on dh. They spoke during their site visit, which is the final stage of the selection process about how they had used um ah, consultants teo improve their own performance in this area to assess thie impact of their work. Remember what kinds of consultants they were using? Let’s. See? So in one area they were working to improve their boards performance and making sure that they were setting expectations on dh, that the responsibilities were clear. So, you know, this area about tracking results is not just about program results, but also about organizational results as well. Yeah, okay. The organization uses reflective learning. What is that? It’s an organization. You know, it’s a practice that organizations are being mindful of what they’re seeing, and then reflecting back on that. So saying, well, why did that work a certain way, or why didn’t that work a certain way? As we expected, perhaps, and then coming back and trying to take steps to sort of address whatever you know, they did see what the result wass, you know, so they’re not just resting and great results, for example, but they’re trying to see how can they be even greater? And if something doesn’t work, then how can we improve upon it going forward? All right, how about we go to aa governance structure, michael governance structure that moves the organ move the organization forward, that’s what we do, yeah, we do more that i functional agreement, our experience high performing non-profits and i say this without exception all think of the relationship between their board of directors and their top manager, usually the executive director of the president as a partnership. I say that because when i came into the sector thirty five years ago, there was a tendency to see the board as the governance body, and they made the decisions, and they made the policy. It never really worked like that. But it sounded nice on paper. But the truth is, if they’ve got to work together because both of them play essential roles in making sure that the organization is is working at its optimum. And there are a lot of details to that, as you know, but the point is, you know, it’s it’s just to make sure that everybody’s on the same page and we’re all moving in the same direction, and that we have some markers for determining whether we’re getting there. One of the standards is that the individual board members and the board overall is regularly evaluated key huge print, huge thing people think, well, the board should be evaluating the executive director of the year it’s true that’s true, right? The government governance committee or some other body should be evaluating the performance of the board as a whole and the performance of every boardmember because it really is a job. And you want to make sure that everybody’s playing on the team think of think about rowing about like rome. New york does every day and you get imagine if eleven people are growing really well on one person’s decided that this is lunch time. You’re not gonna have a high performing rowing team? Yeah, teamwork. Is what non-profits take toe work effectively. Um, new board candidates get a recruitment prospectus and site visits. It’s a big deal. What should be in that recruitment prospectus? We look well, a lot of things that expectations. Ideally, you’d have a job description for board members. You have some sort of description of the kinds of functions of the different committees on the board. How will you be evaluated a year from now? So people know what they’re working against. You know what with what will this test cover, as they say in school and, you know, it’s it’s way give people in our organization we give people the last six meeting’s minutes so they can sort of get a flavor for how the board talks about things. We have ah, charge to every one of our committees that says not only what its duties are, but sort of what its goals are. Our contribution should be, i presume. Non-profit coordinating committee of new york is adhering to these eight standards we try, we were working in its very aspirant. They’re very aspirational really mean. They are it’s and it’s. A constant, innovative process. I can’t. Exactly. And the exciting thing. Tow us is about fifty percent of the people that apply now have applied before that’s exactly way we structured. The weight is fifty percent of the organization’s. Oh, oh have r repeat people keeping one of they want they want to do more. They want it. They want to come back to the inn are most positive. Feedback comes from people that don’t win. They say this is the best thing we ever. It was an enormous amount of lorts cream it’s the best thing we ever went through it’s better than strategic planning, you know it’s it’s ah it’s better than anything else. We’ve tried and we and we didn’t win this year, but we want to go through again next year. We have part of a big part of the reason too. That is melkis gives everybody on our toe now on behalf of detailed feedback in a conference call after the committee of the committee of our two hour and a half, you here’s here’s what the committee said about your communications here’s what the committee said about your financial management hears so mary’s where you need to improve that’s what would cost most? Non-profits a lot of money and, you know, and paid consultant and how many organizations do you do that for? Its offered to everyone that applies. So, for example, in twenty fourteen, we had seventy seven applicants. I’ve done feedback calls with fifty three of them so that’s, about seventy percent of them. Okay, that’s, a big commitment on our part, you know, toe invest that time. But as she said, it’s, really from our point perspective, a training and consulting and coaching program mohr than a competition in the competition is it’s like the voice, you know, see the voice on television. You know, the big payoff in the voice is not whether you win that particular cycle, it’s, that you get to be part of some, you know, master, musical persons team, and you’re going to learn a mountain from that. Well, we hope you learned a mountain from our whole application process. All right, excellent. Um okay. Another one just under the governance structure. That expectations are understood by board members, i guess. That’s part of that probably reflects on the prospect. The recruitment prospectus. Yeah, it does. But it’s it’s also something that needs a constant refresh because board members, i think a lot of them have sort of fallen into ah, dreamlike stand trance where they believe, you know, my job is to come and make sure that the staff’s doing a good job and pat him on the back well, that is part of their job. But there are a lot of other parts to their job, and they they need to do it. And sometimes i need coaching and coaxing and and help and all sorts of stuff, all of which is part of the picture. But staff does a lot of the driving of that process. But boardmember sze have very definite responsibilities just ah, quick. When do you think that these this the recruitment prospectus would that be something that signed by the boardmember i acknowledge that i’ve received a copy and i understand it. Is that that important? It some organizations do that. Some organizations have an annual commitment. Statement where every boardmember signs a commitment that this year i will help raise this amount of money this year with individualized goals. Yeah, this year i will attend at least seventy five percent of all the board meetings, committee meetings and so on. It’s not a light thing. You know, i had a governess, board chair, governance committee chair at a previous organization who used to say it’s the reverse of the old army slogan which used to say it’s, not a job. It’s a journey. He said, this is not a journey at the job. Yeah, it really today running a nonprofit corporation has never been more demanding, but it’s also, you know, one of those things where it’s really closely related toe having board assessments and having a report card, you know, of the entire board or individual boardmember because that’s another way to die, checkin on whether they know what is expected of them on and to remind them when they are not performing, and to acknowledge them when they are, you know, performing you know, i love the annual commitment document or something like that. And and of course, the individual boardmember zehr all being reviewed? Yeah, cool melkis let’s stay with you for ah, accountable financial management. What? Why don’t you? Why don’t you point out what you think is important there? Yeah, i think in this area what? And michael said, one of the buzzwords earlier sustainability, right? So the selection committee is really looking for organizations that are financially healthy and that are that are making smart choices in their finances so that they’re around five years from now, ten years from now, long long term write the other thing that they’re looking for here is how their mission is informing their financial practices. And sometimes we tend to think that those two things are separate, but are the finances informed by what is important to the organization? Right? So, for example, with leek and watts, who was our gold prize winner last year, they were really focused on making sure that their programs were being maximized because beds that weren’t full meant dollars were being thrown. What you tell us what we can watch those? Yeah, sure. So lincoln watts has a school up in yonkers. They also provide tons of programs and services for juvenile justice, youth or kids that are involved in the juvenile justice and students with disabilities. They have programming for them as well. So it’s a pretty multi service organization. All right, so you want to see that alignment between financial priorities and mission and that correct mission statement? Yeah, exactly. Okay, um, adequate cash reserves. Yeah, the protect the organization against contingencies about that. Yeah. I mean, it’s sort of ties back to what michael was talking about earlier about having a diverse revenue stream. It’s all about making sure that you’re protecting yourself and having that cash available is critically important. This election committee looks for a minimum of three months of cash reserves, but ideally at least six months. And of course, you keep saying the selection committee, but we know that this is for all non-profits whether you and to the end of the competition or we’re just or not, it has been an area of serious advancement in the nonprofit world of management of governance. In the last twenty five, thirty years, there was a time when people thought, well, they should operate in a break even, you know, they should just barely make it out because we don’t want a pile of money in the closet. And the truth is, you do that and you’re putting your entire mission at risk. It’s a very silly way to do business. In fact, there’s a standard here for ah working, striving toward a budget surplus each year. Yes, you should. You should want one of the simplest ways. And people don’t think about it is one of the simplest ways to build a surplus is to put it in the budget every year. Contribution of the surplus. Fifty thousand dollars on contribution of the surplus one hundred thousand dollars and treated as an annual recurring expense. And next thing you know, you look up in five years. So it’s not just an afterthought, right? Exactly. Well, not just what’s left over what’s left at the end because non-profit people tend to always could think of more needs and more things they can do and more activity. But you got to think about preserving your organization. I don’t like your own personal finances. Budget for savings? Yes, not just save what’s left of the exactly. Exactly. All right, all right. I’ll stay with you, michael. For ah, diversity and culturally competent practices. Well, this is a very rich area. The truth is diversity. I think most people understand what that means, but diversity’s important, we believe, for all kinds of companies, not just non-profit companies, but in the nonprofit sector where were frequently dealing with such a diverse communities it’s especially critical that we have boards that represent that staffs that represent that, and those are some of the questions that we and the practices that we focus on, representing the communities, that they’re serving exactly the populations, but there’s another issue in here, which is cultural competency, which is a little newer, but i think in many ways is more on point, and that is, if you’re working with populations that are that are each have their own cultural and language and other kinds of barriers to perhaps to dealing with you, you know, it’s part of your job to make sure that you can communicate with him in ways that are understood and that you understand enough about the culture and the language to make sure that not only are you getting the word out, but also you’re getting communications back. Yes, there is, and i think we’re going you have it in one of those standards, regular feedback from the communities that you’re serving. Yeah, there’s a great example. There’s, an organism wonderful organization, bronx works that that about five years ago applied and when asked about diversity said, well, you know, they’re in the bronx and they said, well, you know, we have several people on staff to speak spanish, and i think at the time, they thought that was a good answer, but the selection committee actually dinged him on that because the bronx today represents a very diverse number of ethnic communities, and it goes way beyond the sort of historic image of the puerto rican south bronx. So we came back this past year, and i asked them that same question, and they explained that they had the capacity now to trance simultaneously translated thirty four languages, that they had people on staff speaking nine of the most frequently spoken languages in the bronx. And they want outstanding that’s. That what that’s a what a great story. That’s. Terrific. Um, you have about a minute left before we, uh, we take a little break. Um, the organization regularly assesses in response to emerging needs. So that’s. That’s a big part of that feedback you’ve gotto do you know what your community’s needs are? Yeah, because the truth is not a static, especially in new york city, no place like new york city, where neighborhoods turnover constantly in terms of ethnic and demographic, another composition just look at brooklyn or queens in the last ten or fifteen years, so what you want to do is keep making sure that the geographic area is serving on the issues that you’re working on, connect with those realities outstanding. All right, mohr with michael and melkis coming up first, pursuant and crowdster i’ve talked to their ceos, both of these guys, you are focused on small and midsize shops just like this show, and just like i am, trent recur at pursuant, he has thirteen years working in small and midsize non-profits he gets your fund-raising challenges he’s lived them day in and day out and that’s. Why pursuing tools are made to overcome those challenges so you will raise more money pursuing dot com over crowdster the ceo there, joe ferraro, he and his wife, hanna run a small charity, and he used to be a marketing executive at t he knows your challenges also living them now each day and he’s at crowdster applying corporate marketing to overcome these challenges. That’s why, they added apple pay for mobile donations they’re peer-to-peer micro sites, they’re simple to set up elegant crowdster has terrific support. You are not going to be doing this alone just ah, talk to joe yourself. Joe ferraro, joe dot ferraro at crowdster. Dot com talk to the guy now. Time for tony’s. Take two. I am so grateful to our three regular contributors, amy sample ward, maria semple and jean takagi. They are by no means regular, like ordinary. They’re exemplary. The time they put in to prepping were even before prepping. But just thinking about topics, you know they’re always out thinking about topics emailing me here. This could be good. How about this? And nine times out of ten, whatever they come up with is outstanding. And i say, yes, let’s, go with it. And then the time that they spend preparing and then actually doing the show, you know they have to arrange their schedules around that. Obviously so, you know, very very grateful. Ah, i’m thanks. Latto have amy and maria. And jean on the show, month after month, it’s been for years, all of them jean has been the longest, like he was on one of the very first shows. So that’s, almost latto what we’re coming up on five years, six years come upon six years in july, and maria and amy, like four years or something, you know, it’s just enormous gratitude to the three of them. Thank you so, so much that’s. Tony’s take two now here’s michael and melkis continuing with eight areas of non-profit excellence melkis i think i think it’s your turn all right, let’s sound right for the enlightened use of human resource is what’s enlightened use? Um, so enlightened use means that that organizations are sort of maximizing the talent that is available of them, that they are taking care of their staff. And what else? That they’re sort of using their staffs experienced, tio benefit the organization. Okay, uh, another area in that and there is making sure that your risk level for your staff and three organization is as low as possible so that you don’t allow your organization be blown off course because of something didn’t expect and for that matter, you don’t subject your staff too. Such stressful conditions that it’s bad for them. So it’s it’s, really? The karen nature nurturing of your staff, as well as optimizing with one of the standards, is professional development opportunities, internal and external melkis yeah, so that’s something that the selection committee members really look for in strong organizations is that they’re investing in their staff, right? And so that khun b you know that can take the shape of online universities almost that are created for larger napor imitations and their staff, or something as simple as belonging to end pcc and sending your staff to the workshops that we put on that’s that’s you know something else that a lot of organizations tower in their own applications? Um, that there that there is a whistleblower and conflict of interest policies. Now i noticed those those specific policies appearing to two different standards. What? Why are those specifically mentioned whistleblower in conflict of interest? Well, one one big thing is we just wait. Just finished passing the first revision of the new york state, not for-profit corporation long forty five years and i served on the attorney general’s task. Force that created much of the draft for that and the truth is so so i’m only i’m only two levels. I’m only two degrees of separation from new york state attorney general, two degrees of separation. Well for mr snusz wish i had known you als, but the upshot is it requires now used to be recommended and now requires that every non-profit have a conflict of interest policy and a whistleblower policy, and not everyone was civil or you have to be above a certain budget level. But the point is that there’s much more law undergirding those doing policies. What conflicts of interest are we talking about this between morgan over primarily material conflicts of interest between your sister is the treasurer, right or or the money, you know says we’re paying we’re paying an insurance company. This is an actual example. We’re paying insurance company to ensure all of our operations, but it turns out you’re paying the insurance company more than they really charge, and they’re taking the extra and kicking it back to us. Executive director is just a couple of examples of flagrant abuse that’s about somebody just went what prison last year? For okay, for eleven years of that kind of behavior. And the truth is ah, it turns out this is far more important even than the audit. We actually raised the threshold for audits in the state from two hundred fifty thousand up to a million starting over the next few days. Give a break to the smaller organization exactly on it for what it is not because an audit is not it. You know, every one of the organizations that you’ve read headlines about people stealing money in the last fifteen years, they had a clean audit here before. So the point i’m making us it’s. Not that the auditors weren’t doing their job. They were. And on it is a very limited tools to assess the finances. Okay, and the conflict of interest part are we also thinking about conflicts between boards? Boardmember is doing business with the organization? Yeah. That’s part of what’s covered. Okay. Has a whole list of things. If your mother, brother, sister, grandfather, any people like the any relatives, children, you know, life partners or people are also being paid by the organization. Then you have to. You have to do a declaration. You have to fill out a form. Okay? Succession planning is a part of this too. That that’s part of risk is it is you don’t want an organization that has suddenly hit from sideways because executive director dies. Gets run over by a truck is the favorite example. Yeah, or just, you know, gracefully retired, whatever it is you want to know about that, you want to plan for it in advance. You want to have process established for how it’s going to work on big organizations. You might even have somebody in waiting in smaller organization to at least know what the plan is, you know? And it could even be a you mentioned could be retirement. Retirement could be corixa. Resignation could be sudden. And ideally, the person would stay until the replacement is in place. But maybe there next-gen job doesn’t allow that. Thinks that i mean, that could that could shake things up pretty seriously when the ceo walks in and says, you know, i’m only gonna be here another three months yet big deal. Okay, okay. I’m going back to melkis because you took over work-life. Um melkis information technology. This is this is big reliable we have reliable. So if we’re using windows x p still that’s ah, we probably do not have, which is totally unsupportive and has been un supported by window by microsoft. For i think a year now or something that’s, not a reliable system. Ok, yeah. So this area actually focuses more on like it. T infrastructure has a hole, right? But also i’m shallow, shallow examples of so here we’re looking at, you know, making sure that you have the technology that you need to make sure that the organization is efficient. That it’s, you know, sort of making everyone’s job a little bit easier. But also, you know, what roles does technology play in advancing your mission related goals? A cz. Well, so we often hear about how organizations are trying to use technology. Teo sort of helped deliver the programs and services that they offer. So eh? So i guess this this area is twofold. It’s about building that infrastructure to support your staff, but also the infrastructures to support your programs as well. Yeah. Ok. I see that disaster preparedness and disaster recovery planning is a part of that. One of the interviews i did we’re gonna have? Ahh we’re gonna have ahh half a show devoted to that because it’s one of the end and tcs reviews i got was exactly that. Why? Why so important? Well, we saw it with sandy firsthand, right? Organizations that didn’t have that solid infrastructure were unable to return toe work on dh basically were not able to provide services on dh programming organizations that had a more solid infrastructure we’re able to, even though they might not have been able to return to their offices physically were able to continue their work with pretty minimal interruption because they were ableto work remotely from home on. And we saw that, you know, with our own organization where a lot of us were able to work from home even though it was difficult toe commute into the into the office. Okay, andi, even if you can’t maintain fool full operations, at least you khun, you’re functioning, you’re in communication with each other, you can you can communicate outward to the people that you’re serving mean, at a minimum, you know, i think those things are important communications. What was your michael? What was the ceo there? President there? What was the post sandy like for ah non-profit coordinating committee? Well, it was quite hectic because a lot of organizations were, you know, trying to scramble to come up with solutions to problems that varied all over the map from literally being underwater toe having some of their system’s knocked out toe, having clients that were stranded in communities that were heavily impact about the hurricane and one of our winner is actually in the excellence awards program redhook initiative had had had the foresight four years earlier to build a wireless network in the largest public housing project in brooklyn, and it was it was done for the right programmatic reasons, the very reasons melkis just mentioned so they get communicate easily and cheaply out toe people that lived there, that’s the low income population so that those people could talk directly back to bradrick initiative and say, we need a program that does this, and we need some economic work on this and so on it’s very rambunctious programmed as a lot of stuff, and they didn’t plan it. I don’t think that’s a disaster response mechanism, but when the when the flood hit and then i think fourteen thousand people stranded in all these buildings with no elevators and very difficult problems with medications and food and stuff. They were all they were able nonetheless, in most cases to communicate, at least with every floor, and they were able to talk to people going to get people out, bring stuff in. So, you know, you forget sometimes you think of it and wireless services, you know, that stuff that you have to have a certain level of influence for, but, you know, when used public broadband and things like that, you can actually make it quite cheap, so non-profits air finding very innovative ways to use it, i think, okay, augment their mission, all right, and it’s part of the standards melkis thea, there should be a technology plan shouldn’t just all be happening haphazardly. We should actually should be planning our use of tech. Yeah, i mean, this is something that i feel like a lot of organizations don’t do but it’s a worthwhile investment, it helps you sort of monitor the systems that you haven’t place and thinking about where you’re going in the future and what sort of investment’s in you’re right, you’re going to need to make right. And that also sort of gets the different parts of the organization involved in talking about it. T as it relates to them as well. So, you know, it should not just be the Job or responsibility of 1 person, but really, it should be integrated until the entire, you know, organisation and its functioning. Yeah. Including the people who are doing the program work, everybody’s feeding in at least to the to the person who has the responsibility. Um, there was something that oh, yeah, the confidentiality standards, privacy standards. That’s a little about the importance of thinking about this. Yeah. And and this becomes a bigger issue with the following area as well. Communications. But, you know, there are organizations that do health related work that need to really be mindful of the hip standards on dh, the responsibilities that they owe to their clients to make sure that their information is protected and kept confidential. Okay, michael, anything you want to add on the on the side? No, just obviously, with all social media that are exploding. And with all the various ways in which people network these days non-profits have to be at least keeping up with that and making sure that they’ve got the ability to reach people and at least a lot of those ways, and this would this would flow back to the financial management. I think that should be budgeting for it for the support, the play and that we need to have in this area exactly it it is a growing budget item in a lot of non-profits lives, sure, and it cuts across communications and just basic infrastructure of technology. But it’s it’s pretty much an indispensable assumption today that you need that you think we’ll do with live listen, love, we got more new york, new york joined us welcome, welcome additional new york city people and madison, wisconsin joined us live listener love going out there to medicine let’s go abroad! We’ve got we’re in china! We’ve got wenzhao and tajol china ni hao, seoul, korea and young son korea love went south, south korea so loyal, always, always south korean listeners, please, on your haserot and going to japan, konnichiwa to honda and masato kenichi while we got hungary with us, we can’t see your city, hungary, but we know that. You’re with us live. Listen, love going out to hungary and bringing it back to you to the states. Middleton, middletown, middletown, delaware, joined us live, listener love, of course, those podcast pleasantries always and the affiliate affections so, so important. Okay, um, we’re moving on can hear me turning pages, uh, where we now with michael, right, michael, tends tio take over a bit, but really, sam, we got a minute for a break, ok, it’s melkis astern. Okay, melkis, we’re going tow. I’ll tell you what, let’s, go out for a break. Now. I think it makes sense to have our break now, when we come back, effective communications that melkis was just alluding to stay with us. Like what you’re hearing a non-profit radio tony’s got more on youtube, you’ll find clips from stand up comedy tv spots and exclusive interviews catch guests like seth gordon. Craig newmark, the founder of craigslist marquis of eco enterprises, charles best from donors choose dot org’s aria finger do something that worked. And naomi levine from new york universities heimans center on philanthropy tony tweets to he finds the best content from the most knowledgeable, interesting people in and around non-profits to share on his stream. If you have valuable info, he wants to re tweet you during the show. You can join the conversation on twitter using hashtag non-profit radio twitter is an easy way to reach tony he’s at tony martignetti narasimhan t i g e n e t t i remember there’s a g before the end he hosts a podcast for the chronicle of philanthropy fund-raising fundamentals is a short monthly show devoted to getting over your fund-raising hartals just like non-profit radio, toni talks to leading thinkers, experts and cool people with great ideas. As one fan said, tony picks their brains and i don’t have to leave my office fund-raising fundamentals was recently dubbed the most helpful non-profit podcast you have ever heard. You can also join the conversation on facebook, where you can ask questions before or after the show. The guests were there, too. Get insider show alerts by email, tony tells you who’s on each week and always includes link so that you can contact guests directly. To sign up, visit the facebook page for tony martignetti dot com. I’m rob mitchell, ceo of atlas, of giving. And you’re listening to tony martignetti non-profit radio. Big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. Welcome back to big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent and since we did the live listen love wigan uk joined us welcome, wigan live listen love out to you, marcus, you’re up communications and and use of communications technology why is this important? Yeah, so with this area were really focused on not just how organizations are broadcasting their own work and the services that they provide, but also, you know, going back to that piece of feedback, how are they asking their different stakeholders? Not just their clients, but they’re funders there? Other donors, they’re boardmember zeev anon volunteers? How are they asking them for feedback? And then what our organization’s doing with that feedback? So our communications out, and then we’re also listening in writing to be listening to our stakeholders, right? So there’s that focus on the two way communications bond with the stakeholders it’s not just about communicating with all of them and the exact same way there should be the communications practices should really be tailored towards the stakeholders and you would know, you know what works with them by sort of tracking the effectiveness of your communication strategies and also just by listening to them, right? So what is what is it that they like to hear about? How do they like to be communicated with all right? Critical? I mean, you know, you’ve got to go to where people are not not the channel that you want them to be on, whether it’s email or social media or your sight or you’re a blogger or live events, you’ve got to do where you gotta go, where they are, right, and with social media it’s not even just about, you know, being on everything that’s available, right? It’s about being really mindful about about how you use each forum. So, for example, the washington heights corner project was a finalist last year, and they talked about how they use social media for the purposes of of connecting with city officials, right? So if they attend events and didn’t get to shake a hand, they will tweet at the city official and say, sorry i missed you hope we can reconnect at some point, all right? So that’s a very smart use on very targeted use of one particular media and your point about not being in all of them just because they’re exist when i was it. Ah, again non-profit technology conference this week few people mentioned, you know, avoiding shiny object syndrome just because there’s something new and shiny, a new network, a new social channel doesn’t mean that you need to be on it. Are your people there? Do they want? Do they want to hear from you? There doesn’t make sense for the age, the geography, the other demographics of the people you’re talking to it might not make sense for for your audience. I noticed that there’s something mentioned about formal and informal communication strategies. This could be just meeting people in the building where they live all right, right? Right? Or even, you know, mapping out sort of ah, touch strategy. Right? For particular people, for donors. Maybe where you’re going to map out, how many times a year going to speak to them and whether you know you want to make sure that, especially with funders this is true. You don’t want to make you want to make sure that each touches not an ask, right? So one of them might be, you know, how’s your daughter doing is she liking college? Write something very simple like that that’s that’s an informal check in but something that could go a long way right and says also a lot about how you communicate with with your you’re different audiences making the form nine ninety available is mentioned in this standard thiss area. And in a couple of others to teo to one or two others. Well, what you looking for? That nine? Ninety? It speaks the transparency of the organization. Is the organisation willing to put its finances out there for the public to review? Andi, think, michael, you can jump in here, but i am seeing that more and more of them are available online because it’s a testament to how the organisation sort of holds its self accountable by putting out there it’s, you know, it’s finances or others to see michael anything when we actually did a national guide to how to read the nine ninety and figure out what it means. Because it’s a complicated form, the iris requires it it’s not just a financial form and asked you to talk about are you still pursuing the mission that you were created for? Are you getting results? What is your board looked? Like it’s, it’s, a pretty exhaustive look at your organization from different angles, and they are all indeed online. But the truth is, you know, not every organization puts it on its own website was that my question would be where, where they’re accessible at the national level from an organization called guides guide star, of course, is that but for the for the committee, like now, i am going to focus on what the committee is looking for. Is that sufficient? If it’s if it’s killing one guy, they want ideally, they want to see your nine ninety on certainly they want to see it referenced on guide it’s our maybe a link or from your site? Yes to it on god, because the guy it’s different than a financial form because it gives the organization a chance to talk about its mission. It’s progress, it’s it’s ways of tracking progress and that sort of stuff. So you know non-profits have a cz jim collins once said, i really have to bottom lines. We have a financial bottom line and we have what they call a return on social investment and that’s the way in which you are are not fulfilling your mission. Are you changing anything in the world? And you should be able to track both of those things every year. Ideally, you’re nine, ninety and a certain sections of it that will help people figure that out. Are they making progress? So they helping more kids? Are they getting the kids not only into high school, but into college or they you know that sort of stuff? I had a guest. Ah, a couple of months ago. Now c p a huge tomb and the the conversation was about using the nine. Ninety as a marketing tool. The narrative sections instead of just copying and pasting from your mission statement, you use the narrative two to beam or if you save about what? About what your what your work is because because it is so widely available, use it as a marketing tool. Right? Um, all right, we just have a couple minutes left, and i want to talk some more about these workshops that are that that you conduct or are they strictly in person events or they on the web that others can take advantage of melkis pathway, sexson’s workshops are in person events. But what we do is we post the materials that are distributed at each of the sessions on our awards website, so folks can still i have access to all of the tools and templates that we share in person. Okay, cool it’s called pathways to excellent pathways. And, of course, the site organs of the sorry the organization site is n pcc. And why dot org’s? And where would people go to find the resource is you’re talking about melkis yeah, so actually, they would be on the awards microsite, which is np excellence dot f d n y dot or ge and there’s a a section for that on pathways to excellent say that. Say that you’re ill one more time, it’ll slower for the for the awards. Microsite yep. It’s n p excellence dot fc. And why dot or ge? Okay, i think there’s a link to it and the pcc. And why dot org’s? Yeah. Okay. Okay. Yeah. You’re raising the level of ah, lots and lots of non-profits minutes. It’s important for people to recognize. This is not just ah, a competition. All right. And and those have start the workshops have started. You said march to november. So there started, right? We yeah, so we’ve conducted three of them to date. So the one on fund-raising one on results in one on human resource is going to more coming up. And for those folks who are in new york when what’s the date of the ceremony, i very much hope to be there. We might be talking about that, michael. Yep. So for the twenty fifteen awards, the date is november nineteenth. A location to be determined. Okay, excellent that’s. Michael clarke is president of the non-profit coordinating committee of new york and melkis alvarez-baez director of programmes also at n p c c and they are at n pcc. And why on twitter? Michael melkis thank you so, so much. Thank you, toni. This has been great conversation appreciate. Thank you. My pleasure. Next week, i’ll be back live, probably with mohr from the non-profit technology conference. Got over thirty interviews from there. If you missed any part of today’s show, find it on tony martignetti dot com. Where in the world else would you go? Hyre? I don’t know. Responsive by pursuant online tools for small and midsize non-profits data driven and technology enabled pursuant dot com and by crowdster online and mobile fund-raising software for non-profits now with apple pay for mobile donations. Crowdster dot com. Our creative producer is clear. Meyerhoff. Sam liebowitz is the line producer. Gavin dollars are am and fm outreach director. The show’s social media is by dina russell, and our music is by scott stein. That’s right, scotty, be with me next week for non-profit radio. Big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. Go out and be great. What’s not to love about non-profit radio tony gets the best guests check this out from seth godin this’s the first revolution since tv nineteen fifty and henry ford nineteen twenty it’s the revolution of our lifetime here’s a smart, simple idea from craigslist founder craig newmark yeah insights, orn presentation or anything? People don’t really need the fancy stuff they need something which is simple and fast. When’s the best time to post on facebook facebook’s andrew noise nose at traffic is at an all time hyre on nine a m or eight pm so that’s when you should be posting your most meaningful post here’s aria finger ceo of do something dot or ge young people are not going to be involved in social change if it’s boring and they don’t see the impact of what they’re doing so you got to make it fun and applicable to these young people look so otherwise a fifteen and sixteen year old they have better things to dio they have xbox, they have tv, they have their cell phones. Me dar is the founder of idealist took two or three years for foundation staff, sort of dane toe add an email address card. It was like it was phone. This email thing is right and that’s why should i give it away? Charles best founded donors choose dot or ge somehow they’ve gotten in touch kind of off line as it were on dno, two exchanges of brownies and visits and physical gift. Mark echo is the founder and ceo of eco enterprises. You may be wearing his hoodies and shirts. Tony, talk to him. Yeah, you know, i just i’m a big believer that’s not what you make in life. It sze, you know, tell you make people feel this is public radio host majora carter. Innovation is in the power of understanding that you don’t just put money on a situation expected to hell. You put money in a situation and invested and expect it to grow and savvy advice for success from eric sacristan. What separates those who achieve from those who do not is in direct proportion to one’s ability to ask others for help. The smartest experts and leading thinkers air on tony martignetti non-profit radio big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent.

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