Monday, April 26, 2010

Picks of the Week: April 25 – May 2, 2010

Website of the Week –

The American Marketing Association, one of the largest professional associations for marketers, has 38,000 members worldwide in every area of marketing. For over six decades the AMA has been a leading source for information, knowledge sharing and development in the marketing profession. The AMA's website,, supplies marketing professionals and AMA members with the information, products and services required to succeed in their jobs and careers. The site offers a comprehensive collection of articles, reports, webcasts and a newsletter focused on marketing, public relations, advertising, trends and industry news. While some of the resources are available to members of the AMA only, many resources can be accessed through a no cost registration on the website. Go to:

Publication of the Week -- Volunteers: A Social Profile by Marc A. Musick and John Wilson

From the publisher: Who tends to volunteer and why? What causes attract certain types of volunteers? What motivates people to volunteer? How can volunteers be persuaded to continue their service? Making use of a broad range of survey information to offer a detailed portrait of the volunteer in America, Volunteers provides an important resource for everyone who works with volunteers or is interested in their role in contemporary society. Mark A. Musick and John Wilson address issues of volunteer motivation by focusing on individuals' subjective states, their available resources, and the influence of gender and race. In a section on social context, they reveal how volunteer work is influenced by family relationships and obligations through the impact of schools, churches, and communities. They consider cross-national differences in volunteering and historical trends, and close with consideration of the research on the organization of volunteer work and the consequences of volunteering for the volunteer. Click to preview this link on

Trend of the Week – Value of Volunteer Time Rises

Independent Sector announced that the estimated dollar value of volunteer time for 2009 is $20.85 per hour which increased from $18.77 per hour in 2006. IS calculates the hourly value of volunteer time based on the average hourly wage for all non-management, nonagricultural workers as determined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The estimate helps acknowledge the millions of individuals who dedicate their time, talents, and energy to making a difference. Charitable organizations can use this estimate to quantify the enormous value volunteers provide. According to the Corporation for National and Community Service, about 61.8 million Americans, or 26.4 percent of the adult population, gave 8 billion hours of volunteer service worth $162 billion in 2008. Go to:

Resource of the Week -- Resources for Volunteer Managers

Located on the website of, this resource area provides information on all aspects of volunteer management, including getting your organization ready to involve volunteers, volunteer screening, matching, record-keeping and evaluation, legal issues/risk management, volunteer/staff relations, online activism by volunteers, and volunteer management software. is a project of the RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs of the University of Texas at Austin. For the resource page, go to:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Combining Text from Two Fields in Access

In Microsoft Access you can combine the text in two or more fields into a single text string by using “concatenation”. The results can be displayed in a field in a query, or in a control on a form or report.

For example, If you have a table that contains the fields First and Last for the name, use the following expression to create a text string that displays the values of the First and Last fields separated by a space.

=[First] & " " & [Last]

Type this expression in a text box control on a form or report to display the first and last name together. (Be sure to put a space between the double quotes in the expression.)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Picks of the Week: April 18 - 24, 2010

Website of the Week – Capable Communities

Capable Communities is a website created by Michigan State University’s Office of University Outreach & Engagement. University Outreach & Engagement (UO&E) offers practical support to local groups and organizations who are working to improve their own communities and the lives of their residents through partnerships based on a model, the Outcome-Asset Impact Model developed by the work of Brown and Reed and elaborated by UO&E, to increase local capacity for building positive change. This website is designed to improve the ability of anyone working to achieve healthy, fundamental, and sustainable change for individuals, families, groups, neighborhoods, and communities. Go to:

Publication of the Week -- Succeeding at Social Enterprise: Hard-Won Lessons for Nonprofits and Social Entrepreneurs by the Social Enterprise Alliance

From the publisher: From the Social Enterprise Alliance, the organization dedicated to building a robust social enterprise field, comes Succeeding at Social Enterprise. This practical guide is filled with the best practices, tools, guidance, models and successful cases for leaders (and future leaders) of social ventures and enterprises. A groundbreaking work, it brings together the knowledge and experience of social enterprise pioneers in the field and some of today's most successful social entrepreneurs to show what it takes to implement and run an effective social venture or organization. Succeeding at Social Enterprise focuses on real life examples, lessons learned and the core competencies that are needed to run a social venture in a nonprofit, highlighting such skills as managing and leading, business planning, marketing and sales, and accounting. Click to preview this book on

Trend of the Week – America's Nonprofits Brace for Tough 2010

According to a survey released by the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) America's nonprofits expect that 2010 will be financially more difficult or as difficult as 2009, as 80% anticipate an increase in demand for services, leading many to seek creative alternatives. Key findings include:

• Nearly 90% expect 2010 to be as difficult or more difficult than 2009; only 12% expect 2010 to be financially easier for their organizations.
• 80% of nonprofits anticipate an increase in demand for services in 2010; 49% expect to be able to fully meet this demand level.
• Only 18% of organizations expect to end 2010 above break-even; 35% of organizations ended 2009 with an operating surplus.
• The majority – 61% – have less than three months of cash available; 12% have none.

For more information on the study, go to:

Resource of the Week – Free Excel Spreadsheets

Matt H. Evans maintains a website that offers one of the most extensive collections of financial management resources on the Web – virtually all of it available at no charge. He has gathered collection of free excel files to download from various sources. Go to:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Templates for Microsoft Word

Often the quickest way to create a professional document is to use a template. There are thousands available online. Many are even free. Check out these links for Word templates:

Monday, April 12, 2010

Picks of the Week: Week: April 11 - 17, 2010

TechWebsite of the Week – Jim Collins

This website offers resources by management guru and author of "Good to Great", Jim Collins. It provides access to the teaching, writing and ideas of Jim Collins including free access to insights, articles, audio files, answers to the latest questions and more. Go to:

Publication of the Week -- The Power of Legacy and Planned Gifts: How Nonprofits and Donors Work Together to Change the World by Kevin Johnson

From the publisher: The Power of Legacy and Planned Gifts provides practical knowledge and tools nonprofits need to connect with loyal donors, resulting in a stream of future income that will sustain and advance their mission. Filled with illustrative real-world examples and cases, as well as worksheets to guide the reader, the book details a simple, multi-stage process for nonprofits to build a pipeline of future bequest income and offers donors perspective on making their gifts in a way that will best accomplish their goals. Click to preview this book on

Trend of the Week – Donors Showing More Willingness to Give

Donors are growing more confident in their ability to give to charity as the economy shows signs of stabilizing, according to a new poll of more than 500 donors. Nearly half of the donors questioned said they would give as much as they did in 2009, compared with the 44 percent who predicted they would give the same amount in a poll conducted two months ago by Campbell Rinker, a Valencia Calif. company that regularly questions donors on their confidence levels. Most of the donors said the economy was the main influence on their giving. Donors to religious charities continued to have the most positive outlook, according to the report. To download a copy of the report, go to:

Resource of the Week – Consensus Building Guide

Robert’s Rules of Order is a fine way to run a formal meeting or a town hall vote, but too rigid for a business meeting where the agenda is to build consensus behind decisions. This is a freely available excerpt from the 1999 book, The Consensus Building Handbook: A Comprehensive Guide to Reaching Agreement, by Lawrence Susskind, Sarah McKearnan, and Jennifer Thomas-Larmer, and posted by the Public Disputes Program at Harvard Law School. This chapter, “Short Guide to Consensus Building,” provides a no-frills, step-by-step approach to running a creative, productive meeting, down to the level of how to invite participants who might be assuming a legal liability by attending. Go to:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Insert a Worksheet Based on a Template in Excel 2007

• Right click a worksheet tab
• Select Insert
• Choose the template
• Click OK

You can choose a custom template which you have created, one of the templates available when you click the Spreadsheet Solutions tab, or click the Templates on Office Online button and choose from hundreds of templates available from Microsoft.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Picks of the Week: April 4 - 10, 2010

Website of the Week – Cause Marketing Forum

Cause Marketing Forum (CMF) was founded in 2002 to advance and expand cause marketing in America. Activities of the Forum include:
• The Cause Marketing Forum Conference – an annual summit that attracts business and nonprofit executives to learn, connect and celebrate cause marketing’s best campaigns and outstanding practitioners.
• The Cause Marketing Halo Awards – Judged by an interdisciplinary panel of cause marketing experts, the Halo Awards recognize outstanding cause marketing programs.
• The Cause Marketing Resource Center – case studies, best practices, “Cause Marketing 101” and more to support creation of effective cause marketing programs.
• Cause Marketing Forum Membership - Individuals who join the CMF receive free admission to monthly Cause Marketing Masters teleclasses, 10% off other CMF teleclasses and advance notice of CMF events and more.
• Cause Marketing Forum Workshops and Teleclasses
• Cause Alliance Research Service - Offers specialized background profiles on nonprofit organizations for corporations researching potential partners.

For more information, go to:

Publication of the Week -- The 10 Laws of Career Reinvention: Essential Survival Skills for Any Economy by Pamela Mitchell

From the publisher: In The 10 Laws of Career Reinvention, America's Reinvention Coach(r) Pamela Mitchell offers every tool readers need to navigate the full arc of career change. Part I introduces the Reinvention Mindset, with what you need to know to be prepared mentally to get started. In Part II, you read the real-life stories of ten individuals who successfully made the leap to new and unexpected careers, using the 10 laws. Each story is followed by an in-depth lesson that explains how to adapt these laws to your own career goals, and what actions and precautions to take. The lessons answer all your tactical concerns about navigating the roadblocks, getting traction and managing your fears. The final section provides workbook exercises for fine-tuning your reinvention strategies for maximum results. Clear-headed, calming, practical, and thorough, this is the ideal action plan for getting through any career crisis and ending up securely in the lifestyle you've always dreamed of having. Click to preview this book on

Trend of the Week – Nonprofit Job Growth during the Recession

According to a new report from the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies and the Maryland Association of Nonprofit Organizations entitled “Nonprofits and Recessions:New Data from Maryland”, nonprofit organizations are a counter-cyclical force in the economy, actually adding workers in times of economic downturn. Key findings include:

• Despite the recession underway at the time, nonprofit employment in Maryland continued its growth in 2008, increasing by 2.7 percent between the fourth quarter of 2007 and the fourth quarter of 2008.
• By contrast, for-profit employment in Maryland decreased by 3.3 percent during this same period, eliminating over 61,000 jobs. Demonstrating the nonprofit sector’s role as a critical counter-cyclical force, nonprofits thus accounted for all of the state’s private employment growth between 2007 and 2008
• Despite the continued growth of nonprofit employment in Maryland, nonprofits have actually lost market share in some fields due to the more rapid expansion of for-profits in these fields. Between 1999 and 2008, the nonprofit share of private employment declined by 13 percentage points in educational services; 7 percentage points in nursing and residential care; and 1 percentage point in social assistance organizations.

To download a copy of the report, go to:

Resource of the Week – Free Webinars on Foundation Fundraising

To help you master the world of foundation fundraising, proposal writing, and all that goes into getting the grants you need, the Foundation Center offers a number of short web-based training courses that are free of charge. Go to:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Display Tabbed Documents in Access 2007

A new feature in Access 2007 is the option to use a tabbed interface. This allows you to open multiple objects (tables, forms, reports, or queries) at once. Each object is a separate tab so you can easily see the available objects and click on the one you want. To use this feature:

• Click the Office button in the left corner of the screen
• Click the Access Options button at the bottom of the window
• Select the Current Database in the left pane
• Under Document Window Options, select Tabbed Documents