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Filling the Bus

Whos on your bus

April 27, 2017

In his book, Good to Great, Jim Collins created a memorable image of a business being a bus with its CEO as the driver. Nothing is more important, according to Collins, than “getting the right people on the bus” if you want to take a company from good to great. Applying Collins’ thinking to the […]

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Breakfast of Champions

March 16, 2017

By Thom Peters Recently while reading through the local business news, I noticed the profile of a local agency leader. One of the things this leader said that stuck out to me was “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” It was the first time I had heard this phrase, but I now know it has been […]

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A Tsunami is on the Way

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March 3, 2017

By Jan Brogdon On multiple occasions recently, I have heard nonprofit leaders discussing the upcoming tsunami heading across North America: the changing leadership guard in the C-level suites in large and small organizations in communities of all sizes, demographics and genres of service. If we all sense its approach, what can those of us who […]

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The Pursuit of Perfection

Perfection

February 23, 2017

By Jon Simons One of the most dangerous words in the English language is the word “perfect.” While the concept feels good and worthy of pursuit, it is – in the end – a fool’s errand. I can only imagine the number of unfulfilled goals and dreams that die on the unreachable alter of perfection. […]

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Gift-Wrapped

January 3, 2017

By Jon Simons This month, the Donor By Design Group is challenging you to take action, moving from resolutions to results. Today’s topic? Unwrapping the gifts your volunteers bring.  For our family, the month of December is filled with holiday decorations, family gatherings and an ever-growing accumulation of gifts lovingly wrapped and place beneath the […]

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Passing the Baton, Part 2

November 21, 2016

By Jan Brogdon In his recent post, Bruce highlighted the questions and opportunities that arise when there is change in leadership at the top of an organization. But what about a change in the Development Officer role? Recent data from the AFP “2016 State of the Sector” states that the average tenure of development professionals […]

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Passing the Baton

14068155 - passing the relay baton

November 9, 2016

By Bruce Berglund During an election season we are constantly reminded of leadership transitions. Many of our clients are preparing for their own leadership transitions. Long-serving CEOs and CDOs are now retiring and welcoming the next wave of leadership to move their organizations boldly forward. We know that one of the most important fundraising axioms is […]

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The Power of a Grander Vision

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November 7, 2016

By Mike Bussey Many times, I find myself working with nonprofits who are facing a time of transition. Perhaps their organization is undergoing a change in leadership. Perhaps their community is changing. Perhaps new needs and challenges are calling for a change in programs or ministries. How do successful organizations navigate these transitions? They have […]

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Changing Culture

November 3, 2016

By Peggy Vinson   Changing a board’s philanthropic culture is a big challenge. Convincing board members to become true ambassadors, as well as campaigners, for your organization doesn’t happen overnight, but is one of the best legacies you can leave. Cultural change takes time and consistent effort. Too often, we think of this as a […]

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Bet on the Jockey

bet on the jockey

September 5, 2016

By Bruce Berglund   Part of our work and counsel with our clients is to conduct feasibility studies. We have the opportunity to visit with 25-30 top community leaders and philanthropists, asking them about the image of the non-profit, the proposed plans and who might help raise money and/or be donors of the vision. Recently I was conducting […]

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Living a Life that Matters

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September 1, 2016

By Journey Johnson Last month I had the privilege of attending the Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit with my Donor By Design teammates. I always look forward to the Summit as it offers a great opportunity to reflect and focus on what is important in life. Among the many wonderful speakers, two of my favorites […]

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Execution’s Best Friends

Execution

August 16, 2016

When you speak to folks who have been successful in their work, you will hear a theme. Surprisingly, it is not the brilliance of their strategic plan (although they are certain to have one). And while they may mention the talent and passion of their team, it is not that either. (Again, a key component […]

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Leadership is Everything

Leadership

July 12, 2016

By Bruce Berglund In this series, the DBD Team will take a deeper look at some of the axioms we use when working with our clients. In today’s blog, Bruce reflects on our axiom: “Leadership is Everything.” To read other axiom blogs, click here. One of our first axioms for our firm was Leadership is Everything. We have […]

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A Bug’s Eye View

July 5, 2016

By Michele Goodrich Last week I had the opportunity to work with the leaders of a resident camp in the midst of their summer camping season. After navigating the curvy, narrow roads leading to the camp, I arrived just in time to watch groups of campers and counselors leaving breakfast and heading out to their morning activities. […]

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Share, Not Sell

Share Not Sell

June 21, 2016

By Journey Johnson In this series, the DBD Team will take a deeper look at some of the axioms we use when working with our clients. In today’s blog, Journey Johnson reflects on our axiom: “Share vs. Sell” The ability to share your vision and case for support is a critical first step to any […]

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Don’t Settle

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June 13, 2016

By Thom Peters In this series, the DBD Team will take a deeper look at some of the axioms we use when working with our clients. In today’s blog, Thom Peters reflects on our axiom: “Don’t settle.” Living in a small town, I tend to chose my home repair, insurance and mechanics from recommendations. That’s why […]

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