INK Consulting Blog

INK Consulting’s mission is to help nonprofit organizations realize the potential of all relationships. INK combines hands-on experience, strategic thinking and a healthy view of the big picture to help nonprofits create an organizational culture of concentrating on what really drives mission success: relationships.


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Change: Be SMARTER about It.

We all know change isn’t easy… right? Personal change is hard enough: all the reflection, commitment and self-recognition that goes in to change can be exhausting.

Well if it is so hard to change yourself, isn’t it even harder to change an organization? I say no.

I say change isn’t hard because of one thing: Attitude. When change is imminent, attitude is everything. You must have a positive attitude about the tough road of change ahead. And that, my friends, makes all the difference.

In addition to a positive attitude, it helps to have a plan for change. A roadmap of sorts. What always works for me, personally and professionally, is the S.M.A.R.T.E.R. goal-setting template. I’ve been using this for personal and business goals as I kicked off 2013, so I feel compelled to share it with you, my loyal blog readers. Here’s to setting SMARTER goals in 2013!

SMARTER means that goals should be…

Specific. What do I/we want to accomplish?

Measurable. How will I/we know when our goal is accomplished?

Actionable. Is the goal something that I/we can do something about?

Results-Oriented. Will this goal help me/we achieve other goals toward our desired end state/mission?

Time-Specific. Have I/we committed to a realistic deadline?

Enjoyable. Will I/we feel fulfilled in achieving this goal?

Relevant. Does this goal match other efforts?

change

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What’s Your Word?

If you have been reading my blog regularly, I think that you get my point that I think all relationships are important toward the achievement of any nonprofit’s mission. So many different groups of people have a lot to offer to your nonprofit.

Do you believe this too? If so, do you act on what you believe?

If your organization truly values all relationships, you’ve likely moved beyond the donor-centric language. Instead, you might be using more accurate words: supporters, customers or constituents — instead of a catchall term like “donors.”

So tell me, what word does your nonprofit organization use to talk about your collective relationships? Do you use supporters, constituents, customers or something else? For whatever word you use, what does this definition include for you (volunteers, government officials, general community members)? Please share your thoughts in the comments box of this post.

…And if you aren’t at the stage of changing your internal language yet, I hope that this post made you stop and think about what you might need to change for your organization…


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Painting a (Relationship) Picture

Anyone that knows me is probably chuckling right now that I am writing a post titled painting a picture. Lucky for you, I’m not talking about a real picture. I don’t have an ounce of artistic skill in my body.

Like I said in my last post, shifting to become a relationship mindset organization starts with believing. Your organization has to believe that relationships will achieve the mission. Your organization has to believe that money is not the only way to achieve the mission. After you believe, two important steps come next.

  1. Your organization has to look at the big picture and recognize what various people can offer toward achieving the mission. Donors are not the only people who matter.
  2. Your organization has to engage people to achieve the mission.

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