Subject: Nonprofits

  • Indigenous Approaches to Succession and Mentoring

    What would you do if your output and activity at your current job dipped substantially? Looking from the outside, how might you feel to see someone else in a position you had at an organization you’ve worked at for a…

  • Foundations Shrugged

    Editor's Note: Ruth Loess (her pen name) is our newest blog contributor who will bring something different to our usual offerings … satire. Ruth has over 30 years in the nonprofit and philanthropic worlds, and starting today, she’ll be challenging…

  • Starting a Social Enterprise? You Need to Know This

    Those of us in the affordable housing industry have often required our general contractors to have a payment and performance bond, but have rarely had to go out and secure one for our own organizations. If you were required to…

  • The Complexity of Compliance

    Native American Connections (NAC) is a leader in the development and management of high quality, affordable housing communities. It owns 534 multi-family units with another 106 units currently in development predominantly along light rail in Central Phoenix. To meet the…

  • Four Lessons Learned from Collaboration

    We’ve seen a renewed interest in non-profit collaboration (see articles in Shelterforce here, here, and here) but effective and successful collaboration takes more than simply finding like-minded people to walk with you.  Working with others, especially on a large scale,…

  • Address Merger Concerns Before the Merger

    The Virginia Housing Coalition (VHC) and the Virginia Coalition to End Homelessness (VCEH) both began in the early 1980’s as grassroots statewide advocacy organizations. They supported each other’s work and had their own policy and legislative agendas. Though there had…

  • Happy Thanksgiving!

    To All Shelterforce Rooflines readers and contributors: The Shelterforce staff is thankful for you and your words that inspire, challenge, and inform. We wish you and yours a very happy Thanksgiving holiday. We'll return to our regular blog publishing on…

  • #OMG: Is the #NPO Sector Tech Averse?

    I was speaking with a friend of mine who works at a very large nonprofit organization (very large as in over $100 million in annual revenues). They serve thousands of clients every year with job development, alcohol and other drug…

  • Election Polling, Big Data, and Movement Building

    There is a data geek Internet flame war going on between Sam Wang of the Princeton Election Consortium and Nate Silver of fivethirtyeight.com over 2014 election projections. Evidence of the confrontation can be found here, here, and here. My research…

  • The New Dawn of the Nonprofit Merger

    It used to be that the idea of one nonprofit taking over another was simply anathema.  Nonprofits didn’t, you know, do that to one another. Mergers and acquisitions were the territory of national banks, energy companies and pharmaceutical giants with…

  • Tips for Getting Your “Innovative” Project Funded

    In her July Rooflines post on the idea of “disruptive innovation,” Miriam Axel-Lute addressed how innovation has been over promoted in the nonprofit and public sectors. She focused on the difference between “the world of venture capital” and the nonprofit and…

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    Are You TED Talk Ready?  The Importance of Conceptual Capital

    In the callow youth of the nonprofit sector, you needed two kinds of capital: (1) financial capital, because money does, after all, grease the wheels of change, and (2) social capital, because proving you could fill the courthouse steps or…

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    Turns Out Innovation Is Officially Overrated

    Many nonprofits and social enterprises face constant pressure to be "innovative," whether from funders or charitable business leaders who want to offer their expertise from the world of venture capital and Silicon Valley. For anyone singing the constantly innovating blues,…

  • Nonprofit Funding in San Diego Under Threat

    San Diego’s sunny beaches and beautiful college campuses can be deceptive. The city's soaring housing costs force university students and low-income families to sleep on couches and to depend on free meals. Many, too, end up living out of cars.…

  • Scoring Bragging Rights—and Funding

    If there is one thing we have no shortage of here at LISC, it’s modesty. When a distressed community rebounds, we happily hand the credit to the residents and local groups who did the hard work on the ground. Yield…

  • Defining Language

    Comprehensive. Scale. Development. Capacity. Impact. These words (and many others) took on new definitions when I began working at Shelterforce just two months ago. Understanding the jargon of community development, or any sector, is essential to being part of the…

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    Nine Rules of Engagement for Recruiting and Retaining Community Volunteers

    In community development's formative years, it would have been unthinkable for a nonprofit housing organization not to have a grassroots membership and not to have a governing board elected in whole or in part by that membership. It was universally…

  • Blurring the Lines Between For-Profit and Nonprofit

    In my last blog post I spent a good chunk of time talking about the trend toward "complexification" in the nonprofit sector. There are plenty of small, scrappy, neighborhood based nonprofits around (as a matter of fact, that number continues…

  • The Complexification of the Nonprofit Sector

    Nonprofit sector organizations are getting bigger, operations are getting more tentacled, financial tools are getting wonkier, and budgets keep growing. Don't just take my word for it: check out the Standford Social Innovation Review’s provocative article: "Why More Nonprofits Are…

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    How to Hire a Consultant

    Did you ever feel like you need a consultant to help you figure out what you need your consultant to do?  Believe me, you are not alone.  As a recovering executive director (and boy is that going to make a…

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