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Nonprofit Radio for April 1, 2024: Avoid Technical Debt & Your Technical Roadmap


Jagan Narayanan & Karen Graham: Avoid Technical Debt


Our 24NTC coverage continues, to help you avoid crushing tech debt that would bust your budget and cause you a big headache. Our panel encourages you to manage and maintain your IT infrastructure and software so that costs are managed. They’re Jagan Narayanan, from Fourth Dimension Technologies, and the tech speaker, writer and consultant, Karen Graham.





Kestryl Lowery:  Your Technical Roadmap

Another way to steer clear of a technology budget crisis is to prioritize and plan your investments. Kestryl Lowrey shares the best practices for creating your tech roadmap. He’s with Cloud for Good.


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Hello listeners. It’s Tony. Every week for the past 14 years. I’ve produced a show this week. I’m sorry, I just II I could not pull it together. Uh personal problems, technology problems. Its just, it was just overwhelming. I, I could not, I’m sorry. It’s April Fools. It’s our April Fools show. Welcome to Tony Martignetti nonprofit radio. Big nonprofit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your Aptly named host and the pod father of your favorite Hebdomadal podcast. Oh, I’m glad you’re with us. I’d suffer the embarrassment of. So, Mathenia, if you weakened me with the idea that you missed this week’s show, here’s our associate producer, Kate with what’s going on this week? Hey, Tony, it’s a technology management show. First. Avoid technical debt. Our 24 NTC coverage continues to help you avoid crushing tech debt that would bust your budget and cause you a big headache. Our panel encourages you to manage and maintain your it infrastructure and software so that costs are managed. They are Jin Narayanan from fourth dimension technologies and the tech speaker, writer and consultant Karen Graham. Then your technical road map another way to steer clear of a technology budget crisis is to prioritize and plan your investments. Castro Lowry shares the best practices for creating your tech roadmap. He’s with Cloud for good. Antonius. Take two, I’ve been dreaming were sponsored by virtuous. Virtuous, gives you the nonprofit CRM fundraising, volunteer and marketing tools. You need to create more responsive donor experiences and grow giving, virtuous.org here is avoid technical debt. Welcome back to Tony Martignetti nonprofit radio coverage of the 2024 nonprofit technology conference. We’re in Portland, Oregon and we are sponsored by Heller consulting technology strategy and implementation for nonprofits. With me. Now are Jin Narayanan. And Karen Graham Jin is CEO at fourth dimension technologies and Karen is speaker, writer, consultant and coach. Welcome back to both of you. You’ve both been on the show before. It’s good to have both of you back. Jug and Karen. Welcome back. Thanks. Thank you. Pleasure. So you’ve uh you’ve done your session and your topic is avoid technical debt from killing your nonprofit, not, not just not just damaging or injuring, killing, killing, jugging. Why is this uh an important topic? Why do we need this session? Uh It’s basically it’s a more to do with being able to keep up with uh technology and trying to address issues as and when they come up and not let them pile up. Once you let the issue spile up, then it kind of grows to such an extent that it becomes a very difficult task to manage at that point in time. And that’s why we’re talking about being able to kill them because suddenly you find yourself in a situation where you have a huge technology challenge and you probably don’t have the resources both financial, as well as technical to be able to address that. Ok. And it could have been avoided with better management through the, through the years. Absolutely better management in terms of planning and probably spreading it out over a period of time. Ok, Karen, do you want to add something to, to our introduction to the topic? I think, I mean, you asked why, why this topic here, why this conference? I think it’s especially important for nonprofits to think about this because they have so many pressures that, that send them in the direction of accumulating more technical debt, of putting off purchases of under investing in technology because of the way that they’re funded because of the um just all of the different ways that they operate. I think nonprofits are perhaps more susceptible to technical debt than any other kind of organization. Um So some of the things we want, let’s stick with you, Karen. Just reading from your session description, learn, learn the negative impacts of technical debt, I mean, jug and sort of alluded to them. Do you want to go into more detail or maybe tell a story of, of the, the uh the implications of putting off proper investment and management of technology. I’ll use a release. Simple example. And this is, this is kind of an embarrassing example because it’s a way that I am accumulating technical debt myself by keeping a laptop for longer than I would ever advise a client to do. I would usually tell people to plan to replace their computers every 3 to 5 years. I’ve got a laptop that’s six years old and I’m just crossing my fingers that it’s not going to die in the middle of this conference. And then I would be forced to go out and sort of panic, purchase a new machine without shopping for sales without really thoroughly looking at what my options are. And so in that way, I’m probably not making a very smart decision and could end up the impact of that, could be that I would spend more. I wouldn’t get the right kind of computer for, for the next, the next one that I buy. And that’s just like kind of a microcosm of what happens on a much larger scale with a lot of kinds of enterprise technology systems and organizations. Well, I admire you sharing your own personal, uh, I don’t know, shortcoming or oversight. Uh, hypocrite is the word that comes to mind, but at least you’re honest, you’re an honest hypocrite. You’re not, you’re not a concealed. You know, I love Karen. Karen’s been on the show many times. We’ve talked a lot, we email. So I know she doesn’t object to. I feel the same kinds of pressures that a lot of people working in nonprofits do where, you know, I want to make the best use of my funds. I don’t want to overspend. And so sometimes I can be kind of a cheap skate, double, double hypocrite, not, you’re under investing and you’re not, you’re not turning over the technology as it ought to be as it ought to be upgraded. Alright. Um Jin, uh is there a story maybe that you wanna share or, or uh about, you know, proper, let’s let’s go to the other end of the spectrum from Karen now to the to the proper the proper management and, and investment in, in uh technology. Yeah, actually we, we manage it for a lot of organizations and uh as a part of our job, it’s, it’s a part of the job to let them know how they are accumulating debt and what are the risks they carry and what we see sometimes is uh actually quite surprising. Uh we have clients who still use versions of operating system like Windows 2000 just because it works, they use it, they want to use it. They’re not changing it because the change will cost them no longer supported. It’s no longer supported, it’s risky some of the people attending this event. Absolutely. So that’s the risk that they carry risk is whether if they’re using uh uh let’s say unsupported versions of either operating systems or some of the systems that they have, they risk the possibility of security process. So that’s the biggest risk. And uh again, security is like an insurance and the general perception is if it’s not happened to me, I’m safe. So it’s, it’s, it’s a kind of a situation where it hits until it does happen to you. Absolutely. So I think this is where the challenge is. Uh we need to take, that’s why people need to take proactive measures. So when I talk about my own experiences with organizations, this is what we see in a lot of organizations and even then they would want to probably extend it as much as possible because at the end of the day, upgrades also cost money. I think that’s the challenge. But Karen, we, we should look at this as an investment, right? I don’t know why you’re asking me questions because I’ve now completely undermined my own credibility. Well, let me, let me take a moment to rehabilitate because Karen I’ve known Karen for years. She is a very smart, very savvy tech uh tech reviewer, tech consultant, tech person, professional. Uh she used to produce reports about technology. Um and I had her on the show talking about them. So this is all that was uh that was all in fun. Karen. Karen is a very, very savvy and very smart consultant. Karen Graham consulting. I don’t know, her little bio doesn’t say doesn’t say Karen Graham consulting. It just says, speaker, writer, consultant, coach, I’ve made my best after myself consulting. And as I Tony Martignetti, Tony Martignetti nonprofit Radio Martignetti Planned Giving Advisors II, I think that’s, I think that’s the right way to go. You’re because you’re a well known name in technology. So Karen Graham consulting has gravitas and that’s not just a gratuitous rehabilitation, it’s all deserved. So he’s made such terrible fun of you. II I wanna make sure that I go uh make sure I rehabilitate and set the record straight again. That was not a gratuitous rehabilitation. It’s all true. So as a savvy smart tech consultant at Karen Graham consulting, uh we should be viewing this as an investment, right? Not expenditure, not spending, but we’re investing in tech just like we should invest in our people. Yeah, we should. Um and but in order to make a proper investment, you need to, you need to save for that, you need to budget for it and you need to understand how to evaluate return on investment. And I actually think that’s sometimes how these things start to fall apart is that people don’t understand how to really evaluate the ro I they don’t understand how to swayed someone of that. That’s something we talked about in the session a bit. There were a lot of people in the room that were it and operations, people that do understand this already and yet they’re sort of inhibited from implementing really smart technology investments in their organization because their leaders don’t understand the importance of it. Their boards don’t understand the importance of it, their don’t understand the importance of it. And so I think it’s our responsibility as technology leaders to acquire the skills, to be able to really make a strong case for those investments and to do it in the language, to use the kinds of arguments that are relevant to the people that are making those decisions. Well, let’s stay with you. How do we start to budget for this? Let’s take uh websites, for example, almost everyone, almost every nonprofit organization does some kind of website refresh or maybe even a complete overhaul, redesign every 3 to 5 years. And yet few organizations budget for that in the years that they’re not doing it. And so to smooth out that um that cash flow and to be prepared for a major website redesign, a few organizations have a practice of setting aside a little bit of money in a fund that’s dedicated for that as they’re building up to it. Um But many of them just wait until it’s kind of past due and then they’ll maybe go to a funder and say, oh, we need, you know, many tens of thousands of dollars to be able to do this redesign and they just cross their fingers that somebody’s gonna say, yes. What, what about for the jug? And what about for the kinds of technology that we’re, that’s, that’s palpable. Um Kron was talking about her laptop. Uh you know, I’m thinking of servers. I mean, I’m not a tech person but you are uh you know, how do we, how do we budget for what those expenses are going to be? The the laptop upgrades, the server up grades, things like that. How do we know how much to plan for? See? Actually, uh if you are a technology person, normally the road map for technology is laid out by the vendors. You take the large vendors, be it the network vendors like Cisco and Junipers or you take the server vendors like Dell or HP, I mean, all of them have set a road map and I think that road map is available for us as technology. So we know where technology is headed in terms of what so very clearly uh that road, once that road map is available, there is a possibility that you can therefore start seeing that this is when I need a refresh, this is when I need an upgrade and stuff like that. Well, you may not know the exact amounts which are required for these exacts. But Karen said if we put together a plan and start setting aside some money straight away, so at least it doesn’t hit you when in a big time when it actually happens, you start setting aside funds for it over a period of time and then start rolling it out on an annual basis rather than doing it at one shot every, every year, you set aside a certain amount of money for upgrades for, uh let’s say you now you’re using the technical debt for, let’s say, uh managing technical debt and you set aside some money and then you know what comes in at that point in time and start using it for that purpose. And the large providers have a road map, road maps for us that most of them have, most of them, we have some visibility into what’s in store. It’s not that they just throw something at us. I mean, there is obviously an available in terms of, if you go to Microsoft, I’m sure Microsoft will tell you when is the next release planned for their operating system? And they will also tell you when is the support stopping for the earlier version of the operating system? So you certainly have a time plan for you to plan that out and hardware, hardware as well and HP etcetera, and there might be a lot of people listening that are not with an organization that has an it professional on their staff. And so maybe they don’t have somebody that really has the knowledge to keep track of these kinds of things. In that case, they should find somebody like Jan or you know, someone who can advise them, maybe outsource that um who can help them make those plans. Actually, it’s a good idea to have a periodic audit, let’s say, do you do an annual audit to see where you are? And what is it that you need to address that? That’s probably a good way to address it in that sense. Auditing software, hardware. Absolutely. That’s right. Ok. Vendor relationships, backup plans, all of it together do infrastructure. I audit to see where you are and what are the gaps that you have to fill and then plan for it. At least you can plan for it the next year. It’s time for a break. Virtuous is a software company committed to helping nonprofits grow generosity. Virtuous believes that generosity has the power to create profound change in the world and in the heart of the giver, it’s their mission to move the needle on global generosity by helping nonprofits better connect with and inspire their givers. Responsive fundraising puts the donor at the center of fundraising and grows, giving through personalized donor journeys that respond to the needs of each individual. Virtuous is the only responsive nonprofit CRM designed to help you build deeper relationships with every donor at scale. Virtues gives you the nonprofit CRM, fundraising, volunteer marketing and automation tools. You need to create responsive experiences that build trust and grow impact virtuous.org now back to avoid technical debt. Something I’m curious about, I know both of you, but I, I know I’m not the person who introduced you. How did the two of you come together to do this session together. That’s interesting. That’s interesting. Actually, I’m going to locate in only the last few weeks. Ok. Uh We have another gentleman in our organization who’s been talking to her for a long time. Ga ga. That’s right. So Ronga has been driving this and uh that’s how he got set up and we’ve been in this nonprofit technology thing for the last couple of years. So we’ve been working with multiple people and reaching out to a lot of people and Karen was certainly one of the, on our list. She was on top of our list. Outstanding fourth dimension. Of course, you were a sponsor of nonprofit radio and uh you were on our 650th or 6/100 show, 6/100 show. I interviewed you in uh Moynihan Station in New York City, Moynihan Hall. Pardon me, Moynihan Hall in New York City. And then we had a very nice dinner together. So I know I know the both of you. Well, I just regrettably, I’m not the person brought you together, but Ron found Ronga found Karen top of her list, top of his list. Um Let’s talk a little about Ro I let’s stay with you, Juan. Uh and then we’ll Karen, I’ll turn to you to fill in some too about how do we start to estimate RO I because this is something that if, if, if everything is going along fine, then the C suite may just say, well, everything’s going along fine. I don’t, I don’t see any downside to continuing with uh with uh Windows 2000 for instance. Wh wh why, why should, why should we bother, how do, how do we quantify the, the, the value of upgrading to a, to the current uh operating system, for instance? OK. There are multiple ways of doing this. There are multiple ways, one is uh uh very simply is, is there a productivity impact because of the fact that you’re running older systems? I mean, that’s, that’s one way to look at it. And uh when you look at productivity impact, that’s something we can straight away uh add money value to it and do it. The other is a potential risk that you carry. Like when you say security risk, it’s a risk. But to be putting a money value on it, we need to put a model by which you can say, hey, in case we have a security incident, what is the impact that is having on the organization? OK. So these are the two things that, that comes to my mind straight away security wise, we can look at some of the headlines, a ransomware attacks uh on, I mean, sometimes even on nonprofits, we don’t even have to just look at the commercial, the corporate side of hacks, uh like Yahoo is the one that comes to mind, but there have been others since then. But some nonprofits have been attacked. In fact, I’ll send you a very good example of technical debt, which actually had an impact on general users. Uh Some time back, we had an issue at Southwest where I think the systems came down. I think this is about the air this happened, I think about 34 years back. And I think the one of the reasons was that some of the systems were not upgraded in time. Ok. So having said that, I mean, I’m saying even for large organizations, it happens because we tend to ignore it in a lot of ways, right? So having said that from an ro I look at the impact and uh so if you look at it as an impact, somebody has to put together and say in case this happens, what are the costs and therefore it’s better to invest now and prevent an incident happening sometime down the line. And then also, as you mentioned, productivity, productivity is a very simple, simple model. Yeah, we’re working, right mccarron, we’re, you know, suppose let’s take this windows 2000 example. I mean, we’re, you know, aside from the security risks of using an operating system that still hasn’t been supported for, I don’t know how many years or decades or a decade or so, but just, you know, like the work arounds, like if you wanna integrate calendly, let’s say, or something, you know, to your email or you know, to, to to use something modern with something that’s 24 years old. Um, that’s enormously unproductive. Right. Well, and just to put some numbers to this and I hope I’m not the technical side to it. I hope I’m not doing the math rather spontaneously here. But I was just thinking, like, let’s say you have 10 minutes a day that your old computer, your old operating system, your workarounds are slowing you down by 10 minutes a day. And then if you multiply that out, say by like 40 40 hours a week and 50 days or 50 weeks a year with some vacation, things like that, say, you have somebody that’s being paid $50 an hour. If you take the value of their time, I think that’s $2000 a year, right? One employee. Right. So, I mean, for $2000 would you want to upgrade their operating system? It seems like that would be a pretty clear two $1000 of ongoing costs each year. And then on top of that, the risk of the security risk, we haven’t quantified that right now by, by making the investment of time and money into upgrading the operating system, you’re not really gonna save $2000 you’re still gonna be paying that employee, right? You’re not going to be paying them for 10 fewer minutes every day, but they 10 more minutes that they could be using to do something that is advancing your mission that is raising more money for your organization that is increasing your reach. You know, there’s, there’s all kinds of things they could be doing. So it’s really more of an opportunity cost in reality. But if we wanna put numbers to it and be able to use that to compare ro i of different options, then that’s a, that’s a way that you can do it. Ok? Um uh I’m just reading from your session description um best practices for managing and maintaining it, infrastructure and software systems. Have we, have we covered that? Have we covered that? We talk about it? We did talk about managing and maintaining. That’s right. One of the things that came across during our session itself was uh one was the periodic audit itself which kind of gives you an idea of where you are and where you want to be. Uh The other was I think one of the participants that brought this out was to put together a plan. I mean, while he spoke about a five year plan, I mean, my personal view was in technology, five years is a long time. It’s a very long time. I think about where we were five years ago and how many things didn’t even exist yet. So, but to put together at least a plan saying, hey, this is my technology plan over the next few years and then start implementing it in phases so that you spread out your cost over a period of time. So these are primarily this one is an audit to see where you are because we are so much into the issue that you become part of the problem and not a part of the solution, right? So it’s one way is to step back and get somebody to do an audit and look at it and give you a feedback. The other is to spread out, put together a plan for the, for the next few years. I would, I would rather say three years and spread out your cost over a period of time rather than have them stuck. I mean, thrown at you at one time, these are the two things which came across at that point, I would say with technology planning because things change so much and it’s nearly impossible for that reason to make anything more than even a one year plan, I would say in the environment that we’re in right now, it’s equally important to have a technology strategy. And to me that means priorities, for example, in security, there is often a trade off or friction between higher security and higher convenience for the end users. And so to have sort of a philosophy like when those two things are in conflict, we’re going to lean in one direction or the other or if it’s a matter of investing more money versus um I, I’m trying to think of what the tradeoffs might be here. There’s, there’s all kinds of dichotomies where you can say our philosophy, our approach is going to be that we’re going to lean in this direction and those kinds of things can guide the decisions that you don’t even anticipate. You’re going to have to make a year from now when some new technology arises or when something changes in your environment or your organization and talking about security, there is no limit to the level of paranoia that you can have. It’s clear which side you would, you would. Karen said one way or the other, it’s clear which way you would. It’s a question is where do you want to draw the line and say, hey, I’m willing to live with a certain set of risks and you need to be sure that you’re not taking the one, you can’t be one extreme or the other. If you’re pursuing perfect security, I mean, you’re just going to drive yourself crazy. It’s impossible. You have quadruple factor authentication because they spend half their day logging on. So you have to decide what’s good enough and it’s probably not what you’re doing right now, but there is something that’s probably good enough. Another thing that I was thinking about when you were talking about return on investment is user adoption and training. And, um, and I often see really great technology investment sort of go to waste because people don’t take advantage of them. It’s like the treadmill that I have in the basement right now, which is collecting dust. You know, that’s not gonna help me get more fit. You don’t have to tell your own personal story about the treadmill now too. But, but, but, um, it sounds like there’s, you’ve seen some evidence of that or you’ve seen cases. I most often see that in CRM, um, databases and, you know, other kinds of software applications, but mostly CRM buying something much more robust than needed or even buying the exact thing that’s needed. But then if staff don’t fully utilize it, if they’re not well trained on it, then you’re just leaving a lot on the table. We had a session yesterday. I spoke to some folks actually from Heller consulting about leaning more on your existing tech stack before you go to an outside shiny object that does just one discrete thing. It may be very well buried in your Microsoft 360 subscription or your Google subscription like and they, they were using uh calendar, calendaring as an example, like polling calendar polls that exist in Microsoft 360 also in Google um beyond oh white boards, white boards that’s buried in Microsoft 360. A lot of people don’t know that. So using that also to your point, Karen, knowing what you’re paying for and utilizing it fully. I always tell people don’t be so scared to click on things. You’re not going to break anything, you know, just like go through the whole menu and just click on every single thing and see what it does and you’ll probably find all sorts of things that can improve your productivity and avoid extra expenses because you have already something that will solve the problem. Video video conferencing was another um and, and and transcribing video conferencing. So this stuff is all buried in Google and Microsoft. You may very well be paying for it. Alright, that was another that was a session yesterday uh utilizing your existing tech stack before you go outside. Um Alright, well, so you spoke to folks for an hour yesterday and uh we’ve only been talking a little over 20 minutes, so don’t hold back on nonprofit radio listeners or otherwise I I can’t have either of you back. So if I know you’re giving short shrift to our listeners, so don’t do that. So what else did you talk about yesterday? That uh we haven’t, we haven’t talked about today or, or go deeper in something maybe that we’ve covered but not sufficiently. Actually, we had a lot of uh participation from the audience and a lot of them are willing to share what they had done in their organizations. And uh if you look at some of the um uh what should I say, takeaways that happened? Uh It is more, more from uh participants sharing their views as much as what we were talking about. And this five year plan, in fact, one of them came up and said, hey, we do a five year plan which I think was very impressive uh when everybody heard about it, but maybe, uh maybe not, maybe ill advised. It sounds like like 1 to 2 years is more, having a rigid five year plan is probably ill advised, but having a flexible five year plan. That sounds fantastic. More importantly, having a plan. Ok. What else, what else from the audience? Questions or things folks said privately, what else came from the audience? Anything that you remember that you can? It’s funny being in the moment I was just listening to everybody and now I’m trying to remember exactly what was the most juicy stuff that came out of that. But I will say that it felt a bit cathartic for people to just have a grape session together and compare notes. You know how that is when you experience things and in isolation, maybe you are the only it person in your organization. But I think that was true for a lot of those people. They’re not part of a big department, they’re in a relatively small organization. And so they, they might not even be an it professional, maybe they’re the operations person. And that’s one of five different areas of responsibility that they have and the chance to connect with other people and understand that like other people also experience this and, and they have figured out ways to overcome technical debt or, or at least to move in that direction that seem to feel good for people and a few individuals commented to me about that afterward. Another thing comes to my mind, Karen is uh I think there was some thought in terms of how do we present all of them are mostly it professionals and if they need to present it to their boards or to their uh CXO how do we present technology challenges in a manner which the senior management understands? I think there was a, there was a need, there was a need to see, I mean, we are aware that this is something we need to be presenting it differently from what we probably do because normally we tend to talk technology language. So we probably need to talk the business language for the senior management to understand the impacts of what we do. And therefore, Karen, you alluded to that earlier talking about using the right language. Do you have advice about converting tech language to language? Yeah. Um Think about the audience and what they care about, right? So you’re going to present probably a different message to your CEO or executive director than you would to your CFO or to your board. Um Boards care about risk management. They care about big picture strategy and how is this going to help our organization be successful in the long term? I think CEO S and executive directors care about the same kinds of things, but they’re also more operationally oriented than a board of directors would be. And um but they also above all, probably care about the mission. And so that’s something we talked about is as soon as you can connect a technology investment to serving people better um providing better quality of service or better reach or quicker response times or things like that to, you know, whoever your constituents are, then that starts to get people’s attention more than talking about. You know, this license is going to expire. This product is no longer going to be supported and there’s security patches that won’t be happening anymore. La la la people kind of tune out when you start talking like that. But if they can translate to what this means is that our food shelf might not be able to continue providing services, we might have a disruption, then it becomes very real. All right, perfect. How about we leave it there? That sounds like good motivation and, and advice. All right, she’s Karen Graham, speaker, writer, consultant, coach at I’m gonna add at Karen Graham consulting and uh with her is Jin Narayanan Ceo at fourth dimension technologies. All about avoiding technical debt from killing your nonprofit, Jin Karen. Thank you very much. It’s been a pleasure. Thank you, Johnny. Good to see both of you. Thank you. Thank you and thank you for being with Tony Martignetti nonprofit radio coverage of the 2024 nonprofit technology conference where we are sponsored by Heller consulting, technology strategy and implementation for nonprofits. Thanks for being with us. Its time for Tonys take to thanks Kate. I had a dream recently. Uh it was a fundraising dream. Um I was hosting a Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon. Now, if, if you’re not 50 or older, you may not know what that even means. But the actor Jerry Lewis used to hold, used to host Labor Day Telethons over the Labor Day weekend to raise money for the muscular dystrophy association. MD A. So uh but in the dream, I was the host. So Jerry Lewis that hack. He’s out. Second rate comic. He’s out, I’m the host and we are raising money, not for muscular dystrophy, but we’re raising money for a philharmonic in the dream. And I ask the executive director of the Philharmonic, what is the all in cost of a production night? So all the rehearsal, backstage, front of house performers, everything. What, what’s, what’s the total cost? And he says $300,000 and right away, a donor comes to us and I don’t remember whether it was online or actually phones were ringing. That’s the way it used to be done in the, in the Jerry Lewis Labor Day Days, the phones would be ringing, but whatever a donor comes to us and he pledges $3 million which is enough for 10 performances. So we acknowledge that transformative gift and we shut down the shut down the fundraiser. It’s over. We’re done because this is, it’s an amazing gift. But the funny thing is that the donor had the voice of the actor Paul Benedict. Now he’s not a very well known actor but in, in a movie that I love, remember this is my dream. So I, I’m entitled to put anybody in who I want. Um in the movie I love, which is Waiting for Guffman. It’s a Christopher guest film, Paul Benedict plays kind of a savior character in that movie waiting for Guffman. So it makes sense that, that he would be the sort of savior for the, for the fundraising telethon that we were doing. All right. Uh So then, so then after the dream, then I got up and I went to the bathroom. But so what’s the takeaway? Uh you know, after the bathroom you gotta think about, well, why am I having this dream? All right. So the takeaway I think is there’s the bona fide for fundraising, share your real need with your donors, don’t, you know, don’t pretend that you can get away with less than you really need. I asked the executive director, what’s the full cost of a performance? And, and he shared it. So I think you should share your full needs and then when you’re budgeting and planning plan for full needs, not sort of get by type deeds, I think if you share your full need with your donors, they’re gonna be very much more likely to step up and fund you just like Paul Benedict did in my dream. That is Tony’s take two. OK. That was such a vivid dream. I feel like when most people remember their dreams, they’re like, oh, I was just falling in the middle of nowhere. You had like faces and voices. Well, I have those too but I, I made some notes uh right after this dream. So I was able to help that helped me remember it. Well, we’ve got Buku but loads more time. Here is your technical roadmap. Welcome back to Tony Martignetti nonprofit radio coverage of 24 NTC, the 2024 nonprofit technology conference. We are still in Portland, Oregon at the Oregon Convention Center and this conversation kicks off our day three coverage of the conference. Maybe you can hear that in my voice. Uh Just a little bit were sponsored at 24 NTC by Heller consulting technology strategy and implementation for non profits. I am now with Castrol Lowry. He is managing director for technical services at Cloud for good Krol. Welcome to nonprofit radio. Thanks for having me here. Absolutely pleasure. Thanks for being with us early in the morning. Uh your session, you’ve done your session already. I assume it’s this afternoon. 115, you’re one of the last ones. Ok, this afternoon. So a little preparation for you. It’s oh, the places we’ll go building a technical road map. Alright. So I’m gonna start with the, you know, just the basic uh why did, why did you feel we need this session? What are nonprofits? Uh what uh not quite, not quite getting right about uh their technical planning. Um I think that a lot of nonprofits end up in a very reactive place when it comes to their technology that instead of being able to really think ahead, you know, where are we going to be in three years and five years? And what tools do we need to support that? It becomes a, oh, we’ve been prioritizing, you know, our outcomes and our mission driven delivery and technology becomes kind of an afterthought. And I think that there can be a lot of impact by thinking ahead and saying what tools are out there. What could we be doing differently? How could that increase our impact instead of having it come from a reactive place um and maybe even avoiding a crisis. So I’m just drawing from your, your session description, uh how to prioritize tech investments based on the growth and maturity of your organization. Um How do we like, you know, how do we forecast what our needs are gonna be? And you even talk about our growth and maturity, help us to look ahead, how do we do that? So a big part of it first is to both, look at, look at where you are and what you’re using. Um and think realistically about what you have the capacity to absorb there. I think one thing that a lot of nonprofits end up doing is, you know, there, there can be some great free tools out there, both of enterprise level tools that will give free licensing for nonprofits or also things that are deeply discounted. And so someone might adopt a tool that is frankly bigger than what they need. You know, I say with the free license, sometimes it’s free like puppies, like somebody two days ago said free like kittens, same thing just because you have the tool doesn’t mean necessarily that it’s the right fit for your use case or that you have the team to support it. So then you can end up with some pretty tremendous technical debt. You’ve got all your data into this thing or you’ve built all this automation and you’re not able to manage it well. So some of that technical road mapping is thinking through like what’s the right fit size for your organization and not just what do you need to implement it, but what do you need to be successful with it? Long term? But how do you figure that out? What factors, what variables are we looking at to determine that what’s right for us? So things to look at for figuring that out. Of course, first of all, looking to your peers, you know, looking to other organizations with a similar size or that do um comparable work in other industries, even essentially for what you’re doing. Um conferences like NTC can be a great place to kind of start seeing what’s out there and what your options are. Um looking at what the, what the tool is best at, which is hard sometimes when you’re talking to sales people, you know, because every sales person is going to tell you it’s the best thing for anything you would want to do. But trying to actually get some references from them of how are other people using this tool and then really taking a step back and not, not saying, oh well, gee this this thing, you know, this marketing tool looks awesome. It can do all of this stuff. Look at how you’re doing marketing right now. If you’re sending a scheduled email on a weekly basis, that’s a newsletter and you don’t have um journeys or drip automation. If you don’t have responsive campaigns, then those might be things to look at bringing in, but you probably don’t need the broadest feature set just to start with. So think about whether or not you’re going to be able to support that. Um and something like that like an email journey that may even be in your existing stack already, your email provider may already have that for you. Exactly. Like when you’re building your road map, it doesn’t necessarily mean tool change. It can mean staying on the same thing that you’re using and using it better um I think the first with any technical change really, you start from features and capabilities that you need, like you start from, what does your organization actually need to do? And that’s what should be driving any of the conversations that you’re having and decisions that you’re making for the technology. What you need to do might be about your marketing, might be about your fundraising, might be about security and compliance, but you should start with what do we actually need it to do and then find the tools to suit that instead of starting with? This looks like a really cool tool. Let’s find a way to use it. Ok. Yeah, very smart. Um And you know, it seems common sense but very worth saying because a lot of times I think the shiny, right, the shiny object gets our attention. Plus other people, my friends are using it, I just saw and the interface is so simple. It was so easy for me. I was able to just turn it on and now I have this thing and I can send out text messages. Ok. Well, have you thought about how you’re going to use text messages for your organization? Are they actually going to move you forward? Have you thought about compliance for that? Can people opt out? Like anytime you bring in the new shiny object, you’re actually opening a whole can of worms of other things to think about that. Who should we be getting input from uh who should be at the table, making these decisions. Well, not, not tech implementation decisions but thinking through, you know, what do we need, what are our needs? Who, who should we be getting this uh input from? So I think that any of these changes really, it’s, it’s a whole organization conversation. Like you want to get input from staff that are going to be using the tool you want to, you don’t want it to just be coming, you know, from it. You don’t want it to just be your executive. That said, look, I went to a conference and saw this cool thing, we’re implementing it like you need, you need to actually think about what, what is our organization doing? What supports our processes better? What is our vision for how we’re going, where we’re going to be and what we’re going to be delivering in two or three years. Um I can speak from my own experience, one nonprofit that I used to work directly at um where we were a legal advocacy organization. Um And we were expecting a specific Supreme Court decision to come, you know, within the next year and it was going to be a tremendous spike in our case volume. And so what we were looking at was what tooling do we need to be able to scale up to? You know, I think in the days after the decision that we were concerned about we went from typically having about 10 to 30 inquiries a day to over 1000 inquiries in one day. It was tremendous. And so part of my role as the it director there as we were planning for that was to look at what do we need to accelerate response times for our paralegals? What can we set up for knowledge management so that more people can help faster? Um What did our existing database have that could do that? And what did we need to bring in to support that? So to get to that decision, I was then taking and talking both to our paralegals to our lawyers that would be taking the kind of the equivalent to tier two or tier three cases to do it, talking to our different legal compliance people of OK, if we have this high volume and what do we have to then retain later for it to make sure that we’re doing everything to cover our requirements there? Um What sort of scalability considerations am I not thinking about talking to other it partners with that? So I could really get the full picture on it. It turned out in that case that the system we had and we were working on sales force at that point, was able to scale to what we need. But we did end up implementing a few other pieces of the platform in order to support that fast responsiveness. So in some ways, it’s really, you’ve got to both look at what’s coming, talk to the people who are actually going to be using the tools that are implemented. Look at what you have whether or not you can expand what you have, if that works in the time frame you do or if that’s not going to work, then what other tools are out there that you can bring in and support what you need to be doing? That’s incredible scale. Sounds like overnight when the, when the decision was released, you know, and there was a Supreme Court decision, Supreme court decision related to gay marriage. So that was a significant one. Um And we had not just, you know, the like technical planning there, but there was additional planning even of like document access for our uh our C suite because they were often traveling all over. And so what was the planning to make sure that, you know, our director of Legal could read the decision as soon as it came out when we knew she might be on an airplane. So how do we make sure that that document availability was going to be there? Um So which I suppose points to that your, your technical road map and your technical planning should factor in not just the day to day tools, but what do you have for handling specific moments of surprise or crisis communication? Yeah, that’s a good story. Thank you. Incredible scale. Um You’ve got some Uh Well, I guess we’re starting to get into them best practices for creating this tech road map. So I’m gonna let you take over through some in preparation for your session this afternoon. Thank you. Yeah. So best practice. First of all, is that your technical roadmap approach? It like a project like approach, working on that road map, not as something that you’re doing just off the side of your desk, but that you devote resources and time to actually making it happen. Um I’ve seen too many organizations that kind of say, you know, what things are on fire. We need to start changing things now. And if you jump in too quickly, then you might end up not really having any direction of where you’re going, you know, and so you can spend a significant budget and significant time and not have the progress you’d want to show for it because you might end up working against yourself. You might implement one thing and then realize a year later. Oh, wait, this doesn’t really go where we needed to and change course. So first best practice actually take it as a project. It is a good phase zero to start about. Um Next thing I would say is make sure that you have a good diversity of people in the room. It shouldn’t just be, it, it shouldn’t just be executives, it shouldn’t just be line staff, you should have a variety of voices across the organization, you should probably bring in another point of view outside your organization to talk to you. Whether that’s through, you know, other nonprofits that you partner with that might have done similar things before. Whether that’s bringing in a consulting partner to work with you other people to help, push a little on your ideas and think through like, is this where you want to be here are the things that you’re not thinking about. Here’s what I’ve seen at other organizations. That’s some of what I end up doing a lot as a technical architect is help, help people think about the bigger picture. The outside perspective is valuable, help benchmark. You’ve seen other cases. Yeah. Um I’d say the next one is really avoiding a lift and shift mentality. So a lot of times I’ll see nonprofits that mostly will say like, OK, well, we’ve been using this database for 10 years, maybe it’s time for us to move to something more modern and then they roadmap out essentially rebuilding the same system that they had on whatever the new tool is. Um Without anyone stopping to think about like, oh gee is that process, is that way that we do things the way we do it because the tool made us do it that way or because it’s the most efficient way to work. Um One story I like to tell for this actually that uh so when I, when I was a kid, I would always watch and help out when my mom was making a roast and I noticed that she would always cut off the ends of the roast on either end of it and make the roast. Um, and so that was then how I learned to make a roast leg and I assumed it must have been that there’s something wrong with the meat on either end of a roast or something, you know, it’ll better something. Yeah, that’s what I figured. Um, and then, then a couple of years ago I was cooking with a friend and she noticed me doing this and she said that that’s perfectly good meat. Why are you cutting that off? And I said, oh, well, this is, this is how my mom taught me. It’s just, it’s what I always saw growing up. She was like, hm, that’s weird. You should ask about that. Um, and so I asked my mom and her response was, oh, well, when you were a kid, we had a really small oven and the pan that I had, wouldn’t fit something larger. So I had to cut the ends off so things would fit in. And so, you know, it’s the same thing there of just that lift and shift of, I took the process that I saw and moved it forward without understanding the context of it. And we see that sometimes with nonprofits also of that because, because processes get adapted to fit whatever your current situation is because sometimes you have a level of turnover. That means the people who are doing the process now don’t understand why it came to be that way and just know like, oh, well, I have to tick these three boxes in the system and then fill in this field here and enter this data and I don’t really know why we do it that way, but it’s what we do. And so this next system needs to support ticking those three boxes and filling in that piece of information. So I think you can’t do your technical roadmap without also really doing kind of your business capabilities, roadmap and your business processes. And they go hand in hand to make sure that you’re actually helping your organization mature and move forward instead of just maintain current state. That’s a touching little story about your mom and the roasts you be watching as a child. Um Plus I know baking you have baking in your uh bio that you love to bake. So did your mom influence your baking too? Um I mean, probably a lot of the things I know how to cook came from her, you know, but uh at least with that there aren’t anywhere. It was like, oh well, you don’t put in the baking soda or something. It’s a sweet story. Um I mean, other best practices, um other best practices I’d say is to not be, not be trying to make your technical roadmap, an indefinite plan, I’d say always work towards deciding what your time horizon is that you’re trying to plan within, I think 3 to 5 years is normally a pretty good range. Um, because if you’re trying to make something that’s going to last forever, first of all, it’s going to be really intimidating. Second of all, you’re going to close yourself off to what innovation might come in a few years and say, well, we have this plan that has us extended 10 years out. We need to stick to that and then you miss out on innovations, like what we’re seeing with A I, for instance, three years ago, five years ago, we didn’t probably expect to be where we are now. Um Plus your forecast just becomes less reliable beyond five years. Exactly. And also like it can, it can help then be a good frame of reference for what investment makes sense for your organization. Um When you think about the total cost of ownership of things that you’re going to bring in and also how viable are things that are maybe the solution that you’re choosing because it’s, it’s good enough for right now. You know, like, yes, I know it’s not the best to have double entry into the finance system and the donor database and it would be a lot more efficient for people. It would be less annoying for our team members to have an automated integration. But gee this is what the automated integration is going to cost and we only expect this system to be in play for the next two years. Is it worth it then? So that sort of thing can help you really think through where to put your investment based on how long you expect a tool to stick around. There was a panel yesterday that said uh two folks, you know, beyond year three, you need to build a lot of flexibility into your tech plan because we don’t know to your point what the technology is gonna be artificial intelligence as an example. And we’re not even, you know, we’re not even certain what direction the organization, I mean, not that you surrender your mission or your core values. But, but you know, there might be programs in four years that we’re not anticipating today. So, so beyond like from the 3 to 5 year point, you need to have a good degree of flexibility exactly. Like probably one of the last things in like your road map is going to be your next road map project to then start planning where you’re going next. You know, because both like and with that, like once you make a road map, it should not be locked in stone, you should maintain some plan for flexibility and innovation. There, you have to be able to be responsive. Um But also it’s really good to be able to finish a road map and say, OK, we did what we planned to, we got where we were planning to here. Now, let’s go on to the next one. I think that some organizations get to a point of change, fatigue if they essentially are just constantly updating the same plan instead of being able to step back and say, yeah, we got something done. Now, where are we going next? Do you have any other best practices to share? I know your session is just 30 minutes, right? I I’m not trying to embarrass you or anything but, but if you have more best practices, uh we’d love to hear them. I think the other, the other best practice is to um how to phrase this, not be afraid of picking up what’s happening in other industries that are not nonprofits and using those technical benefits frankly towards nonprofit use cases. There’s a lot of powerful tools out there that don’t necessarily frame themselves as being for nonprofit and there can be a lot of advantage in looking at, you know, something you’re experiencing with. I don’t know your say your supermarket loyalty program or something and figuring out like, how are they doing that? What could we do to better engage our donors with it? Um How could we for our museum membership? What about this would actually be more engaging, like being open to looking more broadly because that’s where some of the really transformative change can come in for your technical road map is not narrowing your scope to just what’s been done before. Ok. What else, what else are you going to talk about? Um, so you can share with our listeners. Yeah. So other than that, what I’ll be talking a bit about is making sure that you do in that road map, use it as an opportunity to improve things like your security and compliance posture. So that’s something that we’re seeing more and more of, um with, for instance, data regulations coming up. You know, California has their data rules that in, in the presentation, I have a list of something like 20 different states and localities that are bringing in new data regulations in 2024. Increasingly, you’re going to see a lot more that you have to be doing from a compliance perspective. If you’re managing anything that could be considered, excuse me, personally, personally, identifiable information. And so any technical road map, you’d rather be looking at that head on instead of having to kind of retroactively look at your systems and say, oh, wait, what do we need to do to actually align with being able to let someone manage their preferences, being able to delete someone’s data when they ask for it, being able to send it all over to them. Um I think that also during these road mapping times is a really great time to think about how you’re handling identity and authentication, making sure that your user management is secure. Um because that’s part of then what you can either if you don’t have it in place yet, it’s a great first place for organizations to start and then it’s something that should just be table stakes for any new tool that you’re bringing into the system. Like, can you bring in single sign on? Does it have multi factor authentication? How is it going to be managing your data? Um, so, yeah, compliance and security. Right. Right. So these are things that, you know, um, especially if you’re dealing with the personally, personally, personally identifiable individual information, is that personally identifiable information? Only two, I’s not three. Ok. Personally identify identifiable information, but that one hasn’t caught on keep trying. Don’t give up, don’t give up on your, on your, uh, on your key word. Um, so if you’re, you know, if you’re dealing with those, something like that, that, that’s just something that you’re looking to be a part of whatever, whatever system app you, you’re looking to bring in. Yeah, definitely. Um, and then I guess the other, the other thing I would highlight is when you’re, you’re planning out your road map to not just be thinking about tools but also to be thinking about staffing for it. So it’s great to bring in a new tool, but you also got to think about the care and feeding of it who in your organization already could handle it. Um, but also, you know, every nonprofit people are wearing seven different hats. Um, I think that particularly at a conference like NTC, at every other conversation you have, are people saying, oh, I didn’t start in technology. I ended up here because we got this tool for marketing and I really liked it. We got this new CRM. And so the accidental techie. Exactly. You know, and so either figuring out like, do you have that person in your organization already that wants to take up whatever the next steps of this road map are or specific pieces of it, or is that something that you need to hire in? Do you need to build that into head count for your organization? Is it something where sure you have someone who can administer it but you need to bring a partner in and to implement it, you know, and figuring out actually what the human side is going to be of that technical road map. Ok. Yeah, that’s all valuable. Yeah, I’m not sure if people think about the staffing, you know, they’re thinking, as you’ve said, they’re thinking about the, how, how, how, uh, wonderful this, this new app is gonna be but is there somebody who can support it? Maintain it? The care and feeding, as you said, as you said, anything else that, uh, we want to talk about? I don’t want, I don’t want to hold out on, uh, nonprofit radio listeners. Ok. All right. Good luck in your session. Half hour. Why don’t you leave us with a little motivation for the uh for the technical road map, motivation for the technical road on a high point with your technical roadmap. But it’s really an opportunity to take a good look at where you are and where you want to be and then plot out the steps that it’s going to be to get there. It can be a really exciting journey and can also mean that you are much better prepared to weather any of the bumps along the way. Outstanding. Thank you, Castro Lowy managing director for technical services at Cloud for good. I think Cloud for good is lucky to have you. Thank you for having me on the radio. My pleasure. Thanks for sharing. Thanks for sharing with our listeners and thank you for being with Tony Martignetti nonprofit radio coverage of the 24 2024 nonprofit technology conference where we are sponsored by Heller consulting technology strategy and implementation for nonprofits. Next week, the generational divide. No, that’s another April fool’s joke. Next week will be email, deliverability and email. Welcome journeys. If you missed any part of this weeks show, I do beseech you find it at Tony martignetti.com. We’re sponsored by Virtuous. Virtuous, gives you the nonprofit CRM fundraising volunteer and marketing tools. You need to create more responsive donor experiences and grow, giving, virtuous.org. Our creative producer is Claire Meyerhoff. I’m your associate producer, Kate Marinetti. The show, social media is by Susan Chavez, Mark Silverman is our web guy and this music is by Scott Stein. Thank you for that affirmation Scotty. You’re with us next week for nonprofit radio, big nonprofit ideas for the other 95% go out and be great. Ok. I wanna try something. I wanna try a second take on, uh, the generational divide next week.

Nonprofit Radio for August 15, 2014: Female Technologists & Hiring Geeks

Big Nonprofit Ideas for the Other 95%

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Dahna Goldstein, Rose de Fremery, Tracy Kronzak: Female Technologists 

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Dahna Goldstein, Rose de Fremery, Tracy Kronzak

Women are underrepresented in nonprofit technology–and leadership. What can your organization do to support the women who make up 60% of nonprofit employees? How can women help their own careers and each other? Dahna Goldstein is founder and CEO of PhilanTech; Rose de Fremery is founder & CEO of lowercase d Consulting; and Tracy Kronzak is consulting manager at Cloud for Good (Recorded at NTEN’s Nonprofit Technology Conference.)



 Amy Sample Ward: Hiring Geeks

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Amy Sample Ward

Amy Sample Ward, our social media contributor and CEO of NTEN, the Nonprofit Technology Network, shares strategies for hiring technologists if you’re not technical: job descriptions; interviewing; testing; and onboarding. 




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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. We have a listener of the week, jeff jody he’s, constantly spreading the word about non-profit radio, especially on twitter, is in athens, georgia, and franklin, tennessee. His businesses, lighthouse counsel. At lighthouse council dot com on twitter he’s at jeff jody j o w d y jeff shout out to you! Thank you so, so much for helping spread the word about non-profit radio. Really, i’m very, very grateful for your support. Congratulations on being our listener of the week. Jeff! Jody! Oh, i’m glad you’re with me. I’d come down with african trypanosomiasis if i heard that you had missed today’s show female technologists, women are underrepresented in non-profit technology and leadership. What can your organization due to support the women who make up sixty percent of non-profit employees? And how can women help their own careers and each other? Our panel interview is from the non-profit technology conference back in april and hiring geeks, maybe sample ward, our social media contributor and ceo of n ten, the non-profit technology network, which hosts the non-profit technology conference, shares her strategies for hiring technologists. If you’re not technical job descriptions, interviewing, testing and onboarding or what we’ll talk about on tony’s, take two a taste of non-profit radio video we’re sponsored by generosity siri’s they host multi charity five k runs and walk here’s the interview from non-profit technology conference on female technologists, welcome to tony martignetti non-profit radio coverage of ntc twenty fourteen we’re at the marriott wardman park hotel in washington, d c and i am joined by three women. We are going to talk about female technologists leading ourselves on duh leading helping each other, and those three women are dahna goldstein she’s founder and ceo of philantech rose defremery founder and ceo of lower case d consulting, and tracy kronzak, consulting manager at cloud for good ladies. Welcome. Thank you, thank you. Get to be here, let’s. Start furthest away, tracy. Well, why are women so underrepresented in technology? You know, i think it has a lot to do with a few things, you know? I’ll start with a little factoid, and it really is one because women in the nonprofit sector represent almost sixty percent of non-profit staff and on lee, twenty one percent of senior leadership. And that means that when you layer in something like technology, what happens is that you are not on ly coming to the table with already it’s slanted against you when it comes to accessing senior leadership. But all of the things that we talk about at this conference here, such as getting it to the table in the first problem, is prioritizing strategy at an organization you’re fighting that in addition to that slanted table. And lastly, you’re also fighting the factors that actually just make women’s career success something much more difficult than men’s career success because of all the things that you know, you’ll hear from, like strong women leaders in the for-profit sector, like marissa mayer and shell samberg’s, say about mentor ship role models and the ability to access that sort of informal formality that happens there on career promotion. So, you know, we’re here today because this is a time that it’s come from women in the sector, and we’re here today to talk about an issue whose time is necessary to talk about at this conference, and it sounds like women need to be helping each other considerably more than they are absolutely, i mean, the time has come for both women to not only step up to the plate with our own networks but simultaneously, you know, make sure that we’re looking forward for our own careers and put our hands back for people’s careers behind us, most notably other women okay, roughs anything more? You want to add introductory wise us to that topic? Absolutely, uh, the issue of women and technology in our sector, to my knowledge has never really been a formal topic of conversation at this conference, where in other non-profit forums that have been a part of and speaking as someone who has a long career in non-profit before the career, i have now about ten years as a non-profit director, i personally select role models. There weren’t i was one of the only ones around who i could look to as as the person who was performing that function. Uh, and although there’s plenty of networking for tea here at this conference, women in technology that has not been a dedicated for maura dedicated topic of conversation and there’s so much fertile ground. Um, and i’ve had women over plenty of time coming to me because they saw me in this role wanting to have this conversation. I thought, you know what? We really need to be talking about this in a more formal i structured way, okay? And rose in your own career, going backwards as an it professional. Did you feel sort? Of left out. Or did you did you, in fact have the support that we were encouraging? Well, it’s interesting, because some of that is mixed in with the issue that tracy was talking about just now where it is a function can have difficulty getting a seat at the table man or woman. I see my male peers running into this often as well. That being said, ah, yeah, and i think that some of this was, uh, necessary to build on my own networks and support groups of in mentorship opportunities with other women. Um, i didn’t necessarily feel obviously in concrete. Lee left out often, but then rate later on in my career, i began to realize, wait a minute in order to advance my career to the next level, i really need to be doing more in my own professional dahna and figuring some of that out a good amount of it on your own. Exactly. You know, dahna anything you can add the introductory wise. Yeah, i do think that the time has really come to have this conversation and i think even just walking around the conference if you look at the number of women here versus the number of men, you know, a lot of more tech oriented conferences, you’ll see a lot more men than women. But if you come to the auntie si, there are a lot of women so there’s a lot of women representation here, not everybody, is necessarily in a technology function in their organization, and some of that has to do with just the way that it functions are developing and non-profits and that a lot of people, men and women end up being maura kind of accidental techies and sort of being the people in their organization who are in a marketing your communications function, who are just comfortable with technology and end up sort of taking on the role of technologists. So one of the things that we feel is important to talk about is particularly for women but for men as well. When you end up in that accidental techie rule, as technology is becoming really mohr integrated into the mission work of organizations, how khun that transform your job function and potentially your job title so that technology is a more essential part of the role and more cases part of the job. Description in the job function that it’s actually being being pursued and since you’re talking about jobs, you just ended job description and function what what daniken can organizations do? And we’re going to get to the personal level also women helping themselves and each other, but let’s start at the organization level. What would you like to see done differently? Better? There are a number of things, and one is, you know, i do think that this this conversation about women and technology is really tied into the conversation about technology having a seat in the at the table in general s o bringing technology to the table to senior management, but the the staff that that tracey mentioned early on that despite the fact that women represent sixty percent of the jobs and the nonprofit sector on ly twenty one percent of the leadership, i think it’s really important for organizations to grow there women leaders and to grow women who are performing good functions within the organization into leadership roles, promote them into leadership roles, bring them to the table, we’ll bring them us into senior management s so that we can also then provide role models. For people coming behind us. And do you have advice at the board level? The non-profit board could be contributing to this. I mean, i think the board needs to be involved in the conversation. You know, boards are involved in doing things like setting hiring plants and setting compensation plans. So, you know, sometimes the board construction can also be ah, factor dependent. You know, an all male board is more likely to think about things and all male terms. So depending on the board construction, there may be ways to diversify the boards as well. There have been a number of studies that have come out recently in the for-profit sector that outlined the fact that companies that have women on boards and women and senior management rules outperform companies that don’t. You were making that point. Tracy was violently shaking your head. Yes. You want to tell us about one of those surveys? Well, i mean it. Obviously, the facts and statistics are out there. And frankly, one of my favorite terms lately at this conference has been let me google that for you. Because i think, you know, to dana’s point, you know, we have studied the phenomena of women in technology for years we know where the numbers lie for both companies that make conscious efforts to incorporate women’s leadership into their board and senior management. We know how they perform. We know, you know, on awful lot about women. But all of that study is actually, in my opinion, taking the place of riel action. Well, it’s, the kind of writes the chronic that we hear a lot of times by obstructionists needs to be studied more exactly, better studies. The research is not there, right? Yeah, you know, so it’s, like, you know, when people ask me for facts and statistics, i’m like, let me google that for you right now, i’ll tell you so. But on the other hand, it’s, like, you know, the difference now is the time has come for action. And i think what all of us came to the realization during the course of development of this workshop is that in the absence of seeing concrete, organizational action or consistent organizational action in the nonprofit sector, we would start somewhere. And that was kind of the onus for this workshop to beginning with anything more tracy you’d like to add to what dahna suggested still at the organization level, i think of the organization level, the study that most kind of resonates with my own experience is the one that says, you know, organizations that are mostly predominantly run by men always will default to male modalities and hiring and promotions, and it’s not got anything to do other than with communication styles and presentation of career assertiveness that makes those choices happen and very unconscious ways. So we can on ly break that by being much more conscious about elevating women toe boards until leadership positions in the nonprofit sector roughs anything you want to add on the organization level? Uh, well, i’m goingto definitely agree with my colleagues on what they said so far. Um, i also think that it happens at the personal level that women ourselves as technologists are going to have to kind of stretch forward and backward at the same time we’re going to be advancing ourselves and ours, our careers, um, and seeking a seat at the table if it’s not extended and and like tracy said, i don’t necessarily think it’s always a conscious thing, i think that there are defaults in culture that can kind of facilitate this but it’s not necessarily an obstacle. All you need to do is kind of press forward and ask one of the things that i learned in the research for tomorrow’s presentation was ah, that women a cz muchas this is still, you know, being debated and discussed right are not requesting professional advancement opportunities as much as they could, um, in the mentorship department. So that’s something that we as women can do, um, and it’s there’s nothing to lose, there’s everything to gain, but at the same time, i think we also need to recognize our own talents and experience and consciously look at other women dahna made a point about if you’re a woman and senior leadership at a non-profit to consciously invite other women who are coming up in the organization, too, the table to leadership discussions and conversations and forms, which would be appropriate so they can get experience and exposure. So you’re not necessarily asking for a promotion, but you’re asking for inclusion into some of the is it literally just like some of the meetings that you’re excluded from, even even without that having that? Leadership title? Is it that easy? Or i guess i’m asking what what is it we’re asking for? We should be asking for, well, that’s going to depend on a specific woman in her situation, so they’re they’re they’re playing women who i think probably should and, you know, definitely need to go out there and as for promotions, depending on what they’re doing and you know where they are in their career, but at the organizational level, absolutely, i think that there should be concrete efforts to develop women in terms of professional development, development opportunities, trainings and education and all of that kind of stuff that’s invested in the staff and this this also is an issue for i t staff non-profits in general men and women. Um but ah, in addition to that women and and others and in leadership in organizations should yeah, consciously think about if we have forums where decisions are being made in the organization at that hyre level, how do we get the younger women who have leadership potential explosive that an early stage? Excellent. Okay, i can actually often example from the for-profit world as well. And that is, you know, at this last dream force, which is a very large sales force conference this year, mark many often, and cheryl samberg spoke a great deal about some of the stuff that they’re doing at salesforce dot com with regards to including women in that kind of experience and it’s not so much that it’s the case that we’re saying ok, now you as a junior person should come in and make senior level decisions, but the truth is, is it’s a recognition that the exposure to the process is about how those decisions get made? The types of conversations that need to happen around them are limited for women and in there, the limited in a number of ways up to and including the absence of role models at higher levels. So, you know, if you’re a guy in technology, you know, another guy will take you out for a drink and say, you know, okay, young lion hears how business takes place, whereas, you know, if you’re a young woman in technology, a guy will take you out for a drink and everybody will say, ah, washington d c so, you know, the truth is i don’t get that. Washington. I don’t get it younger woman, older male usually indicates a transactional relationship, so here we are in washington, okay. Oh, i see on a d c residents. I’d take that a little personal thing. So you know, the new yorker, i did, i didn’t get it. I don’t think we think i hope you don’t think like that in new york. I don’t, i don’t think we do, but all right, but we’re in the belt, we are in the beltway now. I i got it now, thank you, didn’t didn’t, didn’t dick dude ing good ending. You’re listening to the talking alternate network, waiting to get you thinking. Dahna. Good this’s. The way we’re hosting a party in my french city, guests come from all over the world, from mali to new caledonia, from paris to keep back. French is a common language. Yes, they all come from different cultures, background or countries, and it comes desires to make new york they’re home. Listen to them. Share this story. Join us, part of my french new york city. Every monday from one to two p, m. Are you stuck in your business or career trying to take your business to the next level, and it keeps hitting a wall? This is sam liebowitz, the conscious consultant. I will help you get to the root cause of your abundance issues and help move you forward in your life. Call me now and let’s. Create the future you dream of. Two, one, two, seven, two, one, eight, one, eight, three, that’s to one to seven to one, eight one eight three. The conscious consultant helping conscious people. Be better business people. Buy-in you’re listening to the talking alternative network. Oppcoll dahna you know, they’re making an effort for young women who are identified as potential leaders at salesforce dot com to be included in those types of manager meeting so that they can understand how those meetings take place and then replicate that modality of that decision making in their own careers to enable their own advancement. So, you know, he said, oh, i got an email mark daniel said, i got an email from a woman saying, i don’t feel comfortable going to this meeting because i’m going to this meeting and my manager, who’s a male, is not and he said, no, you absolutely need to be there because your manager, who is a male, has obviously had already the exposure to this type of meeting that you’re not getting so come, you know? And i think it’s those kinds of simple steps that can vary from organization, organization and career to career that can help create new, fresh opportunities for women in the sector in a way that, you know, hasn’t even been fully encompassed in terms of what the possibilities are, okay, dahna are there any resource is that you can point organizations to our sites that you can point argast idealware any any anything that an organization could turn to for increasing diversity and making conscious decisions around elevating the the statue of women? Well, i would say the first thing is anybody who’s, an anti seizure come to our session tomorrow on we will give some practical tips for the incredibly this is not going to air. We’re not. We’re not live and s o but people should have come to our senses that ntcdinosaur don’t worry overviewing sorry e-giving come, t c well, it’s it’s your life, but next year it’ll be a fifteen ntcdinosaur anything else? What about what i would recommend is starting? Teo, look within your organization to see if there is a woman who could take that leadership role and who can start teo, bring other women to the table if there isn’t somebody within the organization who’s in a position to do that looked to other organizations, maybe there are collaborating organizations. Maybe they’re partners, you know, maybe there’s somebody on the on the board who it has been a successful woman in business, you know, to have her come in and help think about howto structure programs and doesn’t need to be that formal, but how to start to create that type of inclusion at the organization. Okay, andi let’s, stay with you down, and we’ve talked some about what women can do for themselves, but let’s think about what women could be doing for other women that we haven’t we haven’t touched on yet. Where can we start there? Dahna yeah, absolutely. So, you know, i think that negroes mentioned this a little bit, but, you know, we’re at a point in the development of women and i t where there aren’t that many women and later the senior leadership roles, those who are and those who were sort of coming up through the ranks, we think have an opportunity and maybe even a responsibility to be good role models. Teo, you know, really bring to the four what they’re bringing to the table and also to mentor women who were coming behind them. You know, i think one of the things that we all experienced more have all experienced to date is that none of us really had any mentorship. We didn’t have any women who were doing the types of things that we thought we wanted to do who we could go to to ask for advice. And now that there are women who are in these types of roles, there’s a real opportunity and a real need, we’ve seen it already, and we have forty women signed up for the session to tomorrow. Younger women who are coming up through the ranks and non-profits doing on t work are really looking for that type of mentorship. They aren’t necessarily asking for it. So it’s zoho those rose would advise. And obviously rose said absolutely, if you would agree way that women should be asking absolutely, but but okay, but from the senior level we should be offering exactly. And if women aren’t asking, then we should be offering that’s exciting eyes, there’s something going on, universities that need maybe even lower in education. That’s discouraging women from thinking about careers in computer science, computer engineering, computer programming. I can speak to that. Okay? Because i took computer science at oberlin college. This was some time ago, but i found myself or berlin. Okay. Yeah, this was a while ago, but unfortunately, it is much the same as it was when i was there. This is circa nineteen, ninety four to nineteen, ninety eight. There are so very few women in computer science. Yeah, i was literally like one of the only women. I think i was the only woman in certain classes in one of two and the others on. But does this mean, is there something institutional in our education process, but even going back to high school, but where you have presumably not in their programming courses and, you know, are we encouraging women into those programming courses? And then how are the women treated by a the teacher and be their fellow students who probably are mostly male once they’re in the course? You know, where they there’s there’s like, belittling and ridiculing of marginalizing or they really, you know, part of the class meaningful e well, uh, that all of those things that you described and certainly happen, i think, there’s constructive steps that institutions can take to facilitate on reach out to young women who want to be interested in this type of work. There’s actually, i should say there’s a wonderful organization right now called girls who code, which is a founded by another overland alumna. Ah, that’s. Trying to address some of these gaps, i think that a lot of interesting entrepreneurial solutions to the problem are are underway. Aah! The institutions that i really care about and want to draw more women into the profession, which i think is absolutely necessary. You’re totally right that, you know, if you have these opportunities early up, as you’re bringing women through their early stages of education, it really sets the stage for future development on a much greater level. S o i along the lines of what tracy had said earlier, there’s so many resources out there. I could name a few that’s one women who code is one yeah, and there’s plenty of others, i think. There’s thie, anita borg institute for women and computer science and general. Slower, sure and need a borg institute for yeah, georgie for women who are interested in in coding in computer science. There’s. Plenty out there that there’s more than i could list in the course of aa program. Okay, if i could jump in for a second, i think they’re a couple things to think and to keep in mind one is that computer science courses in college or university are really only one path to a career in technology, you know, i think most of us who end up being technologists in the nonprofit sector come at it from an interest in non-profits primarily and, you know, whatever the mission is the particular organization and frequently come at it from being, you know, a junior staffer in communications or in marketing or a program or something along those lines. So it’s not necessarily women who went into it thinking i’m going to have a career and technology, maybe women thinking i’m going to have a career in marketing and sort of develop opportunities and see that they have an innate talent, but on the on the coding side of things, in terms of actually developing programmers, the organization rose mentioned is wonderful. Andi think part of what that’s trying to combat, and maybe this is sort of getting out a little bit of your question about the university campuses in the developer world, certainly in the in the start up world there’s a culture of kind of programmers. You don’t know if you’ve heard that term, but it’s, you know, bro bro sam, i haven’t so you know programmers and you know, they’re they’re they’re all guys and, you know, that is in the midst of changing, but breaking into that culture is tough, and organizations like girls who code are really working on that, i think a lot of people there seeing that women are, you know, clearly as active as as men at programming and certainly on the strategic side of things, but we still have a ways to go all right turn, i think, you know, to this goes back also in a way, to the question of mentor ship on the question of, like, who’s ahead of me and what do i see them doing, andi? And because, you know, when we were putting together this workshop, we all realize that all of us have had really strong male role models in our life. I mean, like, we’re like, wow, you know, we can name all these great men who were role models to us and, you know, it kind of there was this moment of, like, a collective like, ah, you know, and, you know, we don’t want that to happen for the next generation of women moving forward on dh, you know? That’s not to take away from the mentor ship that we’ve all received from strong male role models, but it is to say that men and women fundamentally the way that we communicate, even if it’s the same things said in the same way they’re received two different manners, they’re perceived two different ways and the same communication from a guy that’s like, you know, looked out his mavericky and looked at is like a trail blazer and a creative thinker looks at, you know, a woman saying the same stuff is often interpreted as, you know, someone who is unreliable and has fundamentally ill founded principles. So i was thinking pushy or noxious, assertive and aggressive, bossy, even boston leven well, i have another p word let’s just say i mean, she’s a real bitch. Yeah, yeah, and i mean, i will tell you that i have progressed to appoint my own career, where i’m managing people, and to this day i am haunted by that word because i will look at my which work the b word, you know, and i will literally chat over to a coworker him, i’m not coming across too much of, you know? During the course of this conversation because, you know, being conscious of that means understanding that, you know, being a guy, you know, being one of the broads is not gonna work for us, and they still call it the guy for a reason exactly, and, you know, we’re not going to get a head in that way, so you know, this is part of starting a conversation of how are we going to get ahead in a way that’s different and understands the context in which we’re working? Tracy, i want to stay with you just to pursue the the question of what women can do for others, the women who are in leadership roles, aside from offering mentorships and making conscious decisions, is there more than female leaders who who have that empowerment can can convey it down? You know, i can share from my own personal experience that i have had some very powerful women ahead of me in my career at various institutions that i’ve worked with and the trap that i felt they fell into that i have tried very strongly to resist for myself is now that i’m here being completely possessive of my power and authority as that person in that role has been advanced that far, i think any woman ahead of us in our careers, who’s proceeded to the point of things like vice president, director, founder principle it’s really easy because of the context in which we work to say, this is mine and all mine, you know, i have made this this moment in my career and, you know, any woman who’s coming up behind me is a threat to that because she might be doing something different or she might be doing something better. And i think, you know, for women who have advanced to a certain point in their careers, it’s not about saying what i accomplished it’s about saying, what are the women behind me doing that can inform their own achievement that i can highlight using that power using that established role that i’ve achieved to advance their own careers? So in some ways, that’s beyond mentor ship it’s actually calling out the context of saying, yeah, you know, like, i’m i’m confident in my role as you know, vice president or founder or prince civil or president and look at this other woman look at her achievements, look at how she is doing this work this way and, you know, focus that attention on her next because i don’t obviously need to prove myself because i’ve already been here and i think that’s a trap that we fall into a lot is saying i have to continually prove myself, even though i have that title on my door that says vice president or director or principal or founder are present good if i can just for a second, you know, i think in terms of asking what we can do for for others, it’s it’s not only a matter of doing for others within your own organisation, one of the big takeaway is that we want people to have from our our session and from ongoing conversations is the opportunity of network with each other, you know, so it doesn’t necessarily. You may not have somebody in your organization who can be that mentor or who can serve as that type of role model. Work with your peers, talk to your peers, their ways to either structured or unstructured pierre mentor each other. There are a lot of younger women who are sort of coming up through the ranks and there’s a great opportunity that creates a community, create some networking opportunities, help each other, figure out career paths, help each other ask for things, help each other get mentor ship s o i think even without having that that strong or, you know, senior level woman within your organization, there’s still lots of opportunities for us to help each other. And we have to we have to wrap up a rose. Please. I would just also add if you’re currently a woman and technology in a leadership position to be more visible. And if you are also coming up through the ranks, consider actually presenting on this topic. Last night i spoke with a woman at ntc. Very young woman, very smart. Who said, you know, i think i want to present a session next year said absolutely do it. If you want to find ah partner to present with your going tto learn so much in the process and you can keep that dialogue going. Thank you very much, ladies. Really real pleasure and important that it’s an outstanding topic and a rare one too. But but increasingly that’s that’s falling away. And it’s becoming more common dahna goldstein, founder and ceo of philantech rose defremery founder and ceo of lower case d consulting and tracy kronzak consulting manager, recently promoted at cloud for good ladies. Thank you so much. Thank you very much. Pleasure. Tony martignetti non-profit radio coverage of the non-profit technology conference ntc twenty fourteen, thanks so much for being with us. My thanks to everybody at non-profit technology conference and and and ten, you know, generosity siri’s they host multi charity peer-to-peer five k runs and walks multi charity means that you can have an event with a small number of runners because together with a bunch of other charities, turns into many hundreds of runners and walkers. So if you’re using summer to plan for your fall fund-raising or if somehow you think that a five k run walk fits into your fund-raising i hope you will talk to dave lynn he’s, the ceo at generosity siri’s they have events coming up in new jersey, miami, atlanta, new york city, philadelphia and toronto. You’ll find ah, dave lynn at seven one, eight five o six nine triple seven or generosity siri’s dot com but you know, i prefer to pick up the phone and talk? Make sure you tell him that you’re from non-profit radio i pulled a video off youtube and put it on tony martignetti dot com this week. It’s a taste of non-profit radio two minute sampler with seth godin craig newmark, the founder of craigslist, and craigconnects charles best ceo of donors choose dot org’s, mark echo from echo enterprises, and several other people are in that sampler. Of course, the full interviews with each of them are on youtube, and again, the sampler is that tony martignetti dot com that is tony’s take two for friday, fifteenth of august thirty second show of this year. Amy sample ward you know her she’s, the ceo of non-profit technology network and her most recent co authored book is social change anytime everywhere her blog’s, amy sample war dot or ge and she’s at amy rs ward on twitter, pay me sample word hi, how are you? I’m doing terrific ly while how are you? Good, good. I don’t know how it’s august but i’m fine other than the incredibly swift passing of time. Yes, i know thirty second show of the year already. Holy cow and god, yes. And mid august already? I know, but are you enjoying your summer? Yeah, i it feels like a vacation because i haven’t had to travel since the middle of june. So many people travel during summer and it is their vacation. But for me, it’s been a wonderful vacation of staying at home and having plans locally. Excellent way. Enjoy our summers, each of us, the way the way we like that’s. Very good. Portland summer in portland is the place to be so it’s hard it’s. Hard to leave when it’s the most perfect time of year here. Excellent. Excellent. Yeah, i got a visit. You out there sometime. I gotta come to oregon. I’ve never been to oregon. Um, i know, i know, but i want to go. I really do want to go pacific northwest. Absolutely. I want to wash. I’ll believe it when i see it. Okay. All right. What do you think this is what you think of this panel of three ladies from it’s? Great. You know, it’s really interesting. And something that we were reflecting on is a staff after the conference to was, you know, it’s, not a brand new conversation, talking about supporting different groups, different communities either in within the inten community, at larger or in the tech sector in the nonprofit sector. But what we’re reflecting on really is the way those conversations i have taken shape and changed over the years, and this last year really felt like this was the ntc where there were multiple formal sessions opportunities like you presented where you folks could come talk, talk to you and have their their stories and their ideas shared more broadly, but also a lot of kind of ad hoc meeting’s at lunch where they would say, everybody come to the table if you want to have this conversation or let’s meet, you know it at the reception tonight and so many conversations about how do we how do we do more to get more people like us or more people like you or more people that know how to do acts? You know, how do we get more people into this community? And i think that’s really exciting and really interesting that that it’s at a place where it doesn’t have to feel like, oh, this is kind of a controversial topic. You know, we’re gonna have to go over here in secret and have this conversation, but that it’s such an open, you know, we really want to create a space in this community that is inclusive and is welcoming, and part of that is creating a great community, but the other part is saying, we have to go out there and make those invitations, you know, you can’t just say, i want to have the best dinner party and make all the food if you haven’t invited anyone to come over, so so i’m excited that the community is kind of at that space where it’s ready to go out there, think about how we’re creating community in inside this space, but also go out and make introductions and invitations and welcome new people in cool. I’m glad so this feels like a watershed year for you and yeah, it’s exciting, and i think it really inspired a lot of staff to feel like they’re not the only ones, you know, getting to see that there’s opportunity to bring more people in, because, you know, staff when when we know that there’s so many community members out there, but we don’t see them because we’re just in the office. I think the ntc really inspire them and reminded them, you know, there are all of these people out there and we can invite more people in it’s going to be great instead of thinking that it’s kind of just, you know, tucked away in the office that’s outstanding, and i’m glad i was a part of it. You feel like it was water. You’re cool. Maybe you’ll have me back next year. Yeah, well, we’ll see. Yes. All right. I’ll see you when i e i’ll believe it when i see it. I believe that recently. So over there at ntc, you get a lot of enquiries about bringing people literally into your organization. Hiring who are technologists? Yes. Oh, so you have some advice around let’s? Start with the the job description. Yeah, i think you know, this is especially the question we get asked the most. You know, we know that we need someone to do manage all of our attacker to help us with our website. But that’s what? That’s what? All that we know. You know, we just know that we need somebody who knows more. Than we dio. So how do we write a job description or where do we even promote the job on dh? So obviously it kind of depends on what kind of job it is it’s a website versus maybe on it, director, managing all kinds of systems, et cetera, but there’s still some some basic steps that everybody can take, no matter what technical job they’re trying to fail, and first is to remember that you don’t necessarily need to know all of the jargon and the acronyms and the web two point oh, everything. What you do need to know very clearly is what your organization needs and what your goals are, who your audience is. You know, if you kind of try to make up for not knowing by filling, you know, job description with a bunch of technical terms, but you’ve never put in there, you know what? We really need our systems that can talk to each other, someone who doesn’t have that integration expertise is not going to apply, they’re not going to know that’s what you’re looking for. So knowing what your goals are, the kinds of tools that may be necessary to meet your mission knowing that and being very clear about that is going to serve you more than, you know, trying to do an internet search for a bunch of jargon. Ok, so so that that’s the first caveat reminder on dh then also, before you start putting that job description together, there’s a great opportunity to talk to everyone inside the organization pull in from from what they know in their own job, you know, what do they need? What what tools are they using that they think need to be updated or and this is not like, oh, there’s, you know, so and so, who just personally doesn’t like this one tool we use not a preference kind of, uh, list, but here’s something that’s really stopping me in my work, you know, here’s something that isn’t serving me to do my job and create a bit of an internal needs versus wants assessment because when you look at that and you can say, will hear things that may be a bunch staff want, but they’re not the priority items of this, you know, kind of three or four things on our really critical needs list that’ll help you. Decide howto prioritize things both on the job description and when you’re looking at applicants. So if you see someone has, you know, a really great experience but saying their most experienced in isn’t on that needs list, you know, it’s it’s like, wow, that’s, greatest really cool project you did once, but not what we’re looking for. It’ll help you feel like you’re not just getting kind of dazzled by all of the shiny things on their resume, but you know what to look for, at least what? To prioritize a cz faras they’re experience or specific skills. All right, so a lot of the information that you need you already have. You just gotta start a conversation inside. Exactly. Okay? Okay. Ah, what? Anything else for the aa for putting together the job description? Well, another thing that i would suggest and it’s not going to be perfect. Of course you’re still going to want to edit it and make sure it’s, you know, meets your needs is an organization. But i’ve seen very few jobs that i have never been, you know, hired for before there’s very few times where someone has posted a job and i thought, wow, i’ve never seen a job like that, you know, i never in my life. So so knowing that you probably could go to, you know, idealist dot org’s look where there are millions of job postings for nonprofit organizations and look for a job, title or job description similar to what you’re looking for and just see how other organizations have explained that or how they’ve kind of structured some of the, you know, needs and an experience pieces there’s probably many examples out there just to get you started, especially with, you know, that fear of had i don’t wantto say this the wrong way, etcetera. You know, it occurs to me this could all apply if you were hiring ah, consultant as well, yes, i was only thinking of, you know, i was only thinking of the employees, but certainly ah, it all applies on the in that respect to consulting. Yeah. And i would even say, um, it applies when you’re bringing in, uh, like i contract id. You know, someone on an r f way. Wantto, you know, designer to dio this project or we want to bring in, you know, an organization? An agency to kind of help us with this campaign, like even those kind of larger than one individual consultant, but still outsourced project still using a process like this because if you can tell them nothing but what you want to dio teo to meet your goals, then you will have at least serve yourself well, instead of trying to anticipate all the things that they might be thinking, you know, you’re hiring either the staff person or this contractor, this consultant because they know more than you on those topics, so let them no more than you on those topics and really be clear about why you want to do those projects, why you need them to do this work anything else around the job description or i think we should move to starting to interview people. Yeah, let’s, start interviewing people. Let’s go. All right, so we’ve got these resumes, and of course, we’re now scanning them based on what our needs are making sure that we’re not we’re not getting attracted by shiny things on resumes that have no relevance to what we’re trying to do and what we’re trying to achieve. Um, okay, we were bringing people in and they’re a lot smarter than us about, about the things that we’re trying to hire them for, yes, we’re gonna do so i’ve seen a few different, uh, tactics work well for organizations that really depends on your comfort level, i think, but remembering, of course, that most often or organizations are kind of small enough that the person they’re hiring, whether it’s, a web person or a night person, etcetera isn’t reporting to another technical person, you know, they’re still going to report to maybe the executive director so not feeling that that person has to kind of opt out of the interview process because they don’t know the language again, they do know what all this work is going towards on, so they still should be a part of this interview process, especially the the manager, whoever that will be. But i would also encourage people to participate in that interview that art are probably not technical, but will rely on this person, you know, ensuring their systems their great, the development or fund-raising manager is often a great person because they maybe our technical, maybe not, but in many organizations they’re the one’s touching. The database the most and if you’re hiring a technical person who, you know, maintaining that data basically part of their job again, they might not be the most technical person on staff, but they probably have a deep investment in this tool, working well for them so that they can do their job. So bringing those people in that really care that the tools work well will help in the interview process because, again, even if they don’t know the language, they will be able to test out what it’s like to talk to this person they would be working with, and if they feel like, you know, they can talk to each other, even if in different languages and still get their points across it’s much better to figure that out and kind of have a feel for what? Talking and working with each other would be like in the interview process than it would be, you know, on day one when they’ve hired, and they’re just getting to meet and realize they can’t talk to each other right versus the she’s kind of condescending to me or, you know, right doesn’t really get me and yes, because you are going to be talking day to day once the hyre is made. So how does the person translate what they know the brilliance that they have in there in their niche of technology to the rest of us who were going to be using this technology and hoping it’s all going it’s all gonna come together and talk to each other? Exactly. And i like that you use the word translate because i was also going to make a suggestion kind of the other side that i’ve seen folks take in the interviewing process is to find someone that’s kind of a translator or ah, liaison. So reaching out either to a local non-technical group, you know, look, look on meet up, there’s. Probably a ton of groups in your city, whether it’s a non-profit tech related group or just, you know, maybe if it’s ah, web person you’re hiring for and you know that you use droop a ll contacting the local grouper droop a ll user group on dh just saying, hey, we’re hiring someone we would love it if we could spend ten minutes on the phone, you know, i was a volunteer from the group just to help us make sure we have the best questions for this interview, and that way, you kind of bounce the questions that you want to ask, you know, shared the intention of the question and had someone who isn’t. They have no, you, no stake in the game. They’re not applying for the job. They are not part of your organization, that they can say, you know, that’s, probably not the best way to ask it. Or, you know, if i was doing this, i would say it this way so that you feel confident going in your questions, meet your needs, and we’ll speak to this kind of technical component. We gotta go out for a way to go out for a break. And, amy, when we come back, we’ll keep talking about maybe testing and and some onboarding we’ll get that in just a couple of minutes. Stay with us. You’re listening to the talking alternative network. Have you ever considered consulting a road map when you feel you need help getting to your destination when the normal path seems blocked? A little help can come in handy when choosing an alternate route. Your natal chart is a map of your potentials. It addresses relationships, finance, business, health and, above all, creativity. Current planetary cycles can either support or challenge your objectives. I’m montgomery taylor. If you would like to explore the help of a private astrological reading, please contact me at monte at monty taylor dot. Com let’s monte m o nt y at monty taylor dot com. Are you suffering from aches and pains? Has traditional medicine let you down? Are you tired of taking toxic medications, then come to the double diamond wellness center and learn how our natural methods can help you to hell? Call us now at to one to seven to one eight, one eight three that’s to one to seven to one eight one eight three or find us on the web at www dot double diamond wellness dot com. We look forward to serving you. Treyz. Talking alternative radio twenty four hours a day. Hi, i’m bill mcginley, president, ceo of the association for healthcare philanthropy. And you’re listening to tony martignetti non-profit radio. Big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. Oppcoll all right, amy, where? Ah, we’re past the interview stage and ah, we want to well, yeah, we’ve we’ve decided that we want to move forward with a couple of candidates and, uh, test their skills. How are we going to do this? Well, there are a few different options i’ve seen organizations who, when they’ve kind of brought on that translator to discuss, you know, what air the best interview questions that we could craft for our specific a job and organization that they’ve also said, are there some tests that could go with some of these questions or, you know, ways that you would suggest we do this and they get it? It really depends on kind of the suite of skills you’re looking for, but i’ve also seen organizations really successfully say cash, we have this board of directors and a couple of them, you know, workin in larger organizations that have an hr department. Could we ask you to tap your hr department and see if they have a standard set of questions or a standard? You know, couples sets of tests that they’ve used in hiring on dh we can modify those and that way. You know, it’s been used towards success before on dh most, you know, most boardmember zehr happy to say, sure. My h r department will share some of that. Are these are these written tests are online tests. Have you seen i’ve? I’ve seen things where it’s online. It would be usually directly following the interview. So we’ve had the interview. You know, we’ve all been at the table talking, and now, you know, way have ah, laptop set up with this page. And can you, you know, walk us through how you would? Okay, as part of you know, okay, it’s, part of an interview. Yeah, okay. And and that so i would say, even if you don’t have a kind of technical components test, you know, tio assess that side of the skills. One of the most i would i would say important test to include in that interview process is to have identified from your staff what staff consider to be, like, emergency all hands on deck with a technical issue. So for many organizations, that means, you know, it’s, our end of year fund-raising campaign. And the donation page is not working, you know? Donate now. Button isn’t working, we just sent out an e mail to ten thousand people and donate now doesn’t work that’s like critical all hands on deck. This is an emergency, and so in the interview, actually sharing, you know, this would be an emergency tow us on dh staff would would be communicating in-kind of a crisis mode style walk us through if you came into the office that morning, you know, you walked in the door and a bunch of staff were right there and said, oh, my gosh, the donation pages down the donate now button isn’t working. You have to get this fixed right away. What would you d’oh? And if you have a candidate for your job, you know, start coming back with very technical language, even in the interview, you can anticipate that’s how they’re going, you know, talk in that moment and if staff immediately feel like, well, i’m not getting information, i need him, i’m still frustrated, i’m still in crisis mode, i don’t know what’s happening, you know, it’s probably a good measure of what it would be like if instead they’re saying, great, this is exactly what we’re going to dio this is how long it’s going to take, you know, this is when we’re going to be able to know if it’s thick and people feel like, okay, i know what’s happening, even if i can’t fix it, someone is fixing it and it’s going to be okay, you know, it’s it’s an easier way to deal in that actual crisis and maybe a better way to talk through kind of a test quote unquote, in an interview without having to set up non-technical, you know, actual demonstration, okay? You said there were a couple of ways of going about this any any others? Is that it? Is that it? Okay, so let’s say those were probably the most frequent that i see they’re, you know, talking through a situation or including something technical, you know, actually showing them some systems and seeing if they i would say looking that the systems is i’ve at least seen it happen more often when organizations have a little bit more of a custom set up, you know, they’ve done a lot, teo modify their database or they’ve got a website kind of cms that custom to them, and they want to see you know, hey, you probably not seen this before because it’s kind of our set up, why don’t you poke around and let’s see how it goes? We just have about a minute and a half left for for onboarding you have some advice about bringing somebody in? Yeah, i think that there’s this sometimes organizations have this feeling that they’ve hired this technical person because they’re totally different than everyone else, and they’re just going to go sit at their desk and be technical and somehow do everything all by themselves. But ultimately what that means is they’ve never been oriented to what everyone does and why they do it and why they need to be maintaining these systems the way they are. So i would say, onboarding needs to really focus on including this new technical hyre in all kinds of team meetings, campaign meetings, anywhere where they can really be exposed to the way folks, we’re talking about the tools they used, and they’re able tto learn oh, that people don’t know that we could really set up, you know, the database to do that report for them. I can i can help here so they feel. Like they’re a contributing part of the team and not just someone kind of keeping everything running in the background, we’re going to leave it there. Amy, thank you very, very much awesome, thanks so much for my pleasure. Amy sample ward dot org’s is her sight. And on twitter at amy r s ward, she’ll be back next month. Don’t worry next week we have two more interviews from ntcdinosaur non-profit technology conference. I have a ton of great guests from there. I’m going to pick two more for next week. If you missed any part of today’s show, find it on tony martignetti dot com small and midsize shops remember generosity siri’s seven one eight five o six, nine, triple seven or generosity siri’s, dot com our creative producers claire meyerhoff, sam liebowitz is the line producer shows social media is by julia campbell of jake campbell social marketing and the remote producer of tony martignetti non-profit radio is john federico of the new rules are music is by scott stein of brooklyn you with me next week for non-profit radio big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent go out and be great. Yeah. They couldn’t do anything, including getting dink dink, dink dink. You’re listening to the talking alternative network waiting to get a drink. Nothing. Cubine are you stuck in your business or career trying to take your business to the next level, and it keeps hitting a wall? This is sam liebowitz, the conscious consultant. 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