Monday, November 10, 2008

Picks of the Week: November 9 - 15, 2008

Website of the Week -- Tides Shared Spaces

Tides Shared Spaces was formed in response to the ongoing difficulties that social change organizations and nonprofits have in finding quality, affordable work and program space. Workspace is often the second largest budget item after salaries. Lack of affordable space has forced dislocation on many nonprofits, both in times of economic boom – due to rising commercial rents - and in times of government and funding cutbacks. MTNC’s, or Multi Tenant Nonprofit Centers, are an effective social investment with the ability to provide tenant organizations with shared services and meeting spaces, as well as opportunities for collaboration and cost-sharing to support their missions. These centers also provide hubs for community organizing and economic development. Stable costs and increased visibility lead to job creation and enhanced program services. To date, hundreds of these centers have been created across the country-regionally and internationally. Go to:

Publication of the Week -- CauseWired: Plugging In, Getting Involved, Changing the World by Tom Watson

From the publisher: An eye-opening guide to the massive societal impact of online social networks. For today's super-wired, always-on, live-life-in-public young Americans, the causes they support define who they are. Societal aspirations have so permeated the "net native" population that causes have become like musical tastes. CauseWired illustrates wired causes in action, bringing real-world stories to readers. The first book to track the massive societal impact on causes of online social networks--from blogs, to video, to the rise of social networks, CauseWired reveals the extraordinary influence of online social networks--in raising money for charity, in changing the political climate and electing candidates, and in raising consciousness for causes. From Facebook causes and campaigns on MySpace, to a raft of new startups and innovative projects, and political movements like the Obama campaign and Save Darfur, this immensely relevant book delivers actionable research and recommendations to help readers launch their own successful wired social campaigns. Tom Watson is the publisher of and founder of, an online journal of culture. A contributing writer to the Huffington Post with a 25-year professional career that includes the founding of two companies and several popular online publications, he is Chief Strategy Officer of Changing Our World Inc., a national philanthropic services company. Click here to preview this book on

Trend of the Week -- High-Net-Worth Donor Trends

Portraits of Donors is a report that reveals specific behavioral patterns and motivations of the nation’s wealthy and ultra-wealthy donors. The report is based on data from the 2006 Bank of America Study of High Net-Worth Philanthropy, the most in-depth quantitative study ever conducted of the wealthiest 3.1% of U.S. households. The original study revealed that wealthy donors possess very different philanthropic traits when compared to the general U.S. population. In response to high levels of interest in the original study from non-profit strategists and donors, Bank of America has delivered on its promise to provide a more in-depth analysis of its findings. Developed in partnership with the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, Bank of America’s Portraits of Donors digs deeper to unveil the unique behaviors, charitable practices and motivations among 12 types of wealthy and ultra-wealthy donors. Donors can leverage these findings to help determine what they want to accomplish with their philanthropic missions and identify like-minded donors or strategists for advice. Non-profit organizations can leverage these findings to help determine how best to approach and communicate with wealthy donors based on the characteristics they’re likely to possess. To download a copy of the report, go to:

Resource of the Week -- Technology Planning Tools

The following tools developed by Npower can help your organization assess its technology and plan for the future:

• TechAtlas: Managed by NPower, TechAtlas is a suite of online tools that help nonprofits assess, plan for and manage the technology they need to make an even greater difference in their communities. TechAtlas walks nonprofits through the technology planning process, from creating a vision of how technology could be most effective in their org, to assessing and prioritizing their needs, to generating a final report that can be shared with board and staff. Additionally, advanced features of TechAtlas provide tools to manage existing technology more effectively, such as online inventorying, help desk tracking and special assessments. More than 10,000 nonprofits have used TechAtlas to help manage their technology today, and plan for tomorrow. Go to:

• Total Cost of Ownership Calculator: The TCO Calculator is an important part of technology planning designed to help you analyze the long-term costs associated with owning technology on a per PC basis and then compare your results to industry benchmarks. Download the TCO Calculator at:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Shading Alternate Rows in Excel 2007

One way to quickly add shading to alternate rows in Excel 2007 is by applying a predefined table style. By default, shading is applied to alternate rows in an Excel 2007 table to make the data easier to read. The alternate row shading will remain accurate even if you add or delete rows.

• Select the range of cells you want to format
• On the Home tab, in the Styles group, click Format as Table
• Under Light, Medium, or Dark, click the table style you want to use
• In the Format as Table dialog box, click OK. Notice that the Banded Rows check box is selected by default in the Table Style Options group. To apply shading to alternate columns instead of alternate rows, clear this check box and select Banded Columns
• If you want to convert the Excel table back to a regular range of cells, click anywhere in the table to display the tools necessary for converting the table back to a range of data
• On the Design tab, in the Tools group, click Convert to Range

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