Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Picks of the Week: April 24 - 30, 2011

Website of the Week – ARNOVA

Founded in 1971 as the Association of Voluntary Action Scholars, the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) is a neutral, open forum committed to strengthening the research community in the emerging field of nonprofit and philanthropic studies. ARNOVA brings together both theoretical and applied interests, helping scholars gain insight into the day-to-day concerns of third-sector organizations, while providing nonprofit professionals with research they can use to improve the quality of life for citizens and communities. Principal activities include an annual conference, publications, electronic discussions and special interest groups. Go to: http://www.arnova.org/index.php.

Publication of the Week -- The Future of Nonprofits by David J. Neff and Randal C. Moss

From the publisher: The Future of Nonprofits helps organizations capitalize on internal innovation and predicting future trends to remake and reshape their culture, structure, and staff. By applying the strategies laid out in this book, nonprofit professionals of all levels can prepare their organizations to take advantage of future trends and develop innovative "internal entrepreneurs" that will grow revenue and drive their mission.
• Provides nonprofits with a comprehensive playbook on how to create a new, more flexible, innovative organization.
• Provides nonprofits a look at the future of fundraising and communications trends into 2016.
• Case studies highlight successes and failures.
• Highlights the power and strength of Social Media.
• Highlights how to hire, train, manage and inspire "internal entrepreneurial" employees.
• Features actionable advice on creating an organization that is primed to grow and thrive in the immediate and long-term future.

This game-changing book reveals how every nonprofit can put technology, innovation and future trends to work to reach their mission and grow revenue. Click to preview this look on Amazon.com.

Trend of the Week – Taxing Tax-Exempt Organizations

A recent survey by the Johns Hopkins Listening Post Project found that a surprising number of the responding organizations are currently paying fees, taxes, or payments in lieu of taxes (PILOTs) to local governments. On top of this, respondents reported that local governments have been placing increased financial pressure on nonprofits during the current financial crisis. Survey results varied considerably, however, by field, size of organization, and geographic region. Key findings include:

• Nearly a fifth of all respondents (17 percent) reported that their services or activities are subject to field-specific taxes, such as taxes on admission charges or bed taxes. These field-specific taxes were much more commonly paid by elderly housing and service organizations (37 percent), by the largest organizations (28 percent), and by nonprofits located in the Northeast. By contrast, only 7 percent of respondents in small organizations and 11 percent of respondents in mid-sized organizations reported paying such taxes.
• 9 percent of respondents reported paying PILOTs to local or state governments, but this share reached 26 percent among elderly service and housing groups, 19 percent among the largest organizations, and 20 percent among those located in the Northeast.
• Taken altogether, 63 percent of responding organizations reported paying some kind of tax, fee, or payment in lieu of taxes. This reached 73 percent among large organizations and stood at 48 percent even among respondents from small organizations.
• Most seriously, fourteen percent of all respondents indicated that they are aware of proposals in their state or locality to impose new taxes or fees on nonprofit organizations and 43 percent indicated concern that their state or local government will adopt new fees or taxes targeting nonprofits during the next year.

To access the full report, go to: http://www.ccss.jhu.edu.

Resource of the Week – 52 Free Development Opportunities for Nonprofit Staff

Kirk Kramer, partner at The Bridgespan Group, led a session on organizational effectiveness at Bank of America’s Neighborhood Excellence Initiative (NEI) leadership program in October 2010. One of the topics discussed was nonprofit staff skill development, which surfaced many creative ways NEI participants offer on-the-job development opportunities to their employees for free. These resources are now available at the Bridgespan Group's website organized by skill type, of ways nonprofit leaders can engage promising staff members in critical skill development areas without sending them to formal external trainings. Use these suggestions as a checklist, identify which opportunities best fit with your staffs’ development (or your personal development) needs, and put a few into action. Go to: http://www.bridgestar.org.

Tech Tip of the Week -- Turning Photos into PowerPoint 2010 Slide Shows

To turn your digital pictures into PowerPoint 2010 slide shows:

• Click the Insert tab on the Ribbon
• In the Illustrations group, click Photo Album
• On the Photo Album dialog box, click the File/Disk button to Insert pictures
• Click the Create button

The steps are the same for PowerPoint 2007. Click here if you're using an earlier version of PowerPoint.

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