04/4 2013

The new nonprofit workforce?

My friends over at Greenlights for Nonprofit Success recently published new research on critical career trends shaping the nonprofit workforce.  A few of the key trends include:

  1. Compensation is more important than ever.

A Greenlights survey found that among Central Texas nonprofit employees, a third of respondents were unsatisfied with salary and 77% indicated a higher salary would increase their likelihood of remaining in the sector.  A major factor driving the importance of compensation is the professionalization of the sector.  Many young professionals view nonprofit work as a career path and have pursued advanced degrees to develop their skills.  They expect to be compensated fairly and also have student loans to pay off.

  1. Competition for talent will only increase.

Greenlights’ found that 80% of young professionals age 35 and under anticipate staying in their current job for no more than four years.  In addition, the majority of Central Texas nonprofit professionals in almost every age group have been in their current position less than 2 years.  All of this job hopping means nonprofits will have to think creatively about how to retain quality staff.  Survey respondents identified factors that will increase the likelihood of a longer career in the sector including increased compensation (see trend #1), increased benefits, professional development opportunities, manageable workloads, and schedule flexibility.

  1. Technology is a major factor in blurring the boundaries between personal and professional life.

The youngest generation in the workforce today, the Millennials, have grown up in an age of instant access to information.  Because of this, they often view work and leisure as one and the same and are more likely than Baby Boomers and Gen Xers to be “hyperconnected,” always attached to their jobs and the web regardless of location.   Technology has also made it possible for employees of all generations to shift where they work.  As a result, more organizations are establishing flexplace policies which give staff greater autonomy in where they work, whether that’s from home, at a coffee shop, or other public meeting space.

Thanks for their help in pulling together the top three trend. So what do you think? Sound off in the comments. And for more trends and recommendations for how nonprofit organizations and employees can respond to these sector-wide changes, check out the full report from Greenlights as a PDF.

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07/18 2011

Books vs Nonprofits: Who helps whom?

A Recap of the Greg Mortenson Furor guest post by David Matthew. David is an ERP software analyst and writes about nonprofit technology at Software Advice.

Greg Mortenson, founder of the Central Asia Institute (CAI), has long been considered among the leading lights of the nonprofit world. Not only is he a best selling author, but he is also a former Nobel Peace Prize nominee. Mortenson used his compelling story of arriving half-dead in a Pakistani village after a failed mountain expedition to raise millions of dollars to educate female students in rural Pakistan.

It started to go downhill for Mortenson when the American Institute of Philanthropy published an article in March drawing attention to a number of irregularities in the way CAI was managed. Then Jon krakauer, author of Into Thin Air, teamed with 60 Minutes for an in-depth focus on the CAI’s efficacy. This April exposé sparked an avalanche of bad press and public condemnation for Mortenson.  He partially earned scrutiny from a number of major media outlets for embellishing and making up facts in his two memoirs, Stones Into Schools and Three Cups of Tea. However, in his role as executive director of the Central Asia Institute, he has faced even greater criticism for mismanaging the Central Asia Institute.

The primary accusation is that the Central Asia Institute has helped fund his book promotion and speaking tours, but has not reaped any financial benefit for their investment. This is especially disconcerting because Mortenson was earning at least $25,000 per speaking event and travelling by private jet. The verdict is still out as to how much this situation was the result of malfeasance or mismanagement, and it would be irresponsible to draw too many conclusions without a full list of the facts before us. With Mortenson still recovering from a recent surgery, it may still be a matter of time before we have his whole version of the story.

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07/21 2010

Are any nonprofits using Alternate Reality Gaming?

I would love to hear an answer to that question. I can’t find any. And trust me, I am looking. What is your experience? Know any that I missed? Not sure what alternate reality gaming is?

Check out these links.

NIN Alt Reality

LOST Alt Reality

Olympics Alt Reality Game

P.S. I am in love with Jane since seeing her keynote at SXSW.

So take a look and let us know what you find. Or maybe pitch us on how they SHOULD be using it.

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05/24 2010

Come take our Film Class! Now with Greenlights!

Hey readers! Along with the other staff of Lights. Camera. Help. I will be teaching the following class. Would love to have you sign up and see your smiling faces.

Do you want to use video to connect to your community and inspire your donors? Do you lack the skills or the budget? Or do you just need a little confidence? Join the founders of Austin’s own Lights. Camera. Help. to learn everything you need to know to film, edit and distribute your story to the public. In this interactive, fast-paced day of training, you’ll get expert advice on DIY video production and guidance for getting the most out of your video to ensure a maximum return on your investment. Space is limited for this special presentation designed especially for individuals and small teams from the same organization. Reserve your spot and register today!

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