Monday, March 29, 2010

Picks of the Week: March 28 - April 3, 2010

Website of the Week -- B Corp.

B Corporations are a new type of corporation which uses the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. B Corporations are unlike traditional responsible businesses because they: meet comprehensive and transparent social and environmental performance standards; institutionalize stakeholder interests; and build collective voice through the power of a unifying brand. B Corporations address two critical problems which hinder the creation of social and environmental impact through business:

• The existence of shareholder primacy which makes it difficult for corporations to take employee, community, and environmental interests into consideration when making decisions; and
• The absence of transparent standards which makes it difficult for all of us to tell the difference between a 'good company' and just good marketing.

B Corporations' legal structure expands corporate accountability and enables them to scale and achieve liquidity while maintaining mission. B Corporations' transparent and comprehensive performance standards enable consumers to support businesses that align with their values, investors to drive capital to higher impact investments, and governments and multinational corporations to implement sustainable procurement policies. For more information, go to:

Publication of the Week -- Brandraising: How Nonprofits Raise Visibility and Money Through Smart Communications by Sarah Durham

From the publisher: In the current economic climate, nonprofits need to focus on ways to stand out from the crowd, win charitable dollars, and survive the downturn. Effective, mission-focused communications can help organizations build strong identities, heightened reputations, and increased fundraising capability. Brandraising outlines a mission-driven approach to communications and marketing, specifically designed to boost fundraising efforts. This book provides tools and guidance for nonprofits seeking to transform their communications and marketing through smart positioning, branding, campaigns, and materials that leverage solid strategy and great creative, with a unique focus on the intersection of communications and fundraising. Click to preview this book on

Trend of the Week – Corporate Giving Trends

The Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy, an international forum of business CEOs and chairpersons focused exclusively on corporate philanthropy, has published Giving by the Numbers 2009. Based on corporate contributions data from 137 leading companies, including 55 of the Fortune 100, this edition of Giving in Numbers features a comprehensive study of 2008 corporate giving. Findings include:

• Even in challenging economic times, 53% of surveyed companies increased giving from 2007 to 2008—just 3% fewer than the 56% that increased giving from 2006 to 2007. Moreover, an impressive 27% of companies increased giving from 2007 to 2008 by 10% or more.
• Among the 53% of companies that gave more in 2008, non-cash giving increased by a median of 29%. Companies that gave less dropped most in corporate cash grants.
• Poll results show that CEOs and giving officers are prioritizing the fulfillment of pre-existing commitments to grantees while working to integrate philanthropic strategy with company-wide business objectives more comprehensively. CECP presents their top four imperatives for redesigning community investment programs.
• Despite sustaining greater profit declines than their non-Fortune 100 peers, 60% of Fortune 100 companies increased giving from 2007 to 2008. By contrast, 47% of non-Fortune 100 companies increased giving in the same time period.

To download a copy of the report, go to:

Resource of the Week – Harvard Business School Working Knowledge Newsletter

The Harvard Business School publishes HBS Working Knowledge, a weekly newsletter available at no charge. HBS Working Knowledge is a forum for innovation in business practice, offering readers a first look at cutting-edge thinking and the opportunity to both influence and use these concepts before they enter mainstream management practice. Every day, HBSWK features new work from among the more than 200 HBS faculty at the forefront of their diverse fields of expertise, providing a valuable source of inspiration for executives, entrepreneurs, and managers seeking to keep their organizations at the leading edge of innovation and change. Articles specific to nonprofit organizations are frequently included. If you would like to receive this e-mail newsletter each Monday, simply submit your e-mail address here: Once your subscription begins, be sure to click on "Social Enterprise & Nonprofit" in the left column for past articles on nonprofit topics.

Tech Tip of the Week -- COUNTIFS in Excel 2007

We've had the COUNTIF function in Excel for a while. This function allows you to count records in a list that match a single criteria. What's completely new with Excel 2007 is COUNTIFS which allows you to count records based on multiple criteria. Sure, there were other ways of doing this before, but none as easy as the COUNTIFS function. Here's the syntax:


Makes it really simple to count records in a range that match the criteria you enter in the formula. If you need a little more help, check out this article on the Microsoft web site: Use the COUNTIFS function in Excel 2007 to analyze data.

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