Monday, May 16, 2011

Picks of the Week: May 15 - 21, 2011

Website of the Week – Bridgespan Group

Founded in 2000, the Bridgespan Group is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that helps nonprofit and philanthropic leaders develop strategies and build organizations that inspire and accelerate social change. At the heart of its mission is the belief that a strong and effective nonprofit sector can be a powerful force for change as well as a source of human inspiration. The Bridgespan Group pursues its mission through three sets of activities:
• Strategy consulting, executive search, and philanthropy advising, to help nonprofit organizations and philanthropists develop and implement strategies with the potential to achieve significant results.
• Sharing insights, strategies and tools developed by us and by others through research and client engagements.
• Developing or supporting strategic initiatives that aim to improve performance across the nonprofit sector. Notable among these is the Bridgestar initiative, which seeks to help nonprofits attract, connect, and develop strong leadership teams

To access this content-rich website, go to:

Publication of the Week -- Joining a Nonprofit Board: What You Need to Know by F. Warren McFarlan and Marc J. Epstein

From the publisher: Joining a Nonprofit Board offers an important guide to the roles and responsibilities of a nonprofit board member. Marc J. Epstein and F. Warren McFarlan provide a step-by-step guide to how board members can work with a nonprofit organization to achieve the organization's overarching mission, attain financial sustainability, and develop and execute the systems needed to accomplish both. Based on more than 10 years of research from Rice University and Harvard Business School and filled with illustrative examples, Joining a Nonprofit Board explores the basic structure of a nonprofit, explains how to build and monitor a nonprofit's mission, and identifies how the board performs an effective assessment of a nonprofit. The book also explores the challenges posed by the duality of leadership between the unpaid volunteer non-executive chairman of the board and the CEO. Joining a Nonprofit Board includes a helpful explanation of a "board member's life cycle." The authors start with the decision to join a board and explain how to prepare for the first meeting. The book explores how to serve effectively the first two years and reveals what it takes to develop your ongoing role as a trustee. Finally the book describes how to transition off the board to other forms of service with the organization. Joining a Nonprofit Board is a comprehensive resource for anyone who wants to take their experience in the business world and serve a nonprofit with passion and clarity.
Click to preview this book on

Trend of the Week – Foundation Funding for Native American Issues and Peoples

Over the past decade, U.S. foundation support benefiting Native Americans declined from 0.5 percent to 0.3 percent of total foundation giving. According to Foundation Funding for Native American Issues and Peoples, total grant dollars targeting Native Americans dropped 30.8 percent in the latest year, compared to a 14.1 percent overall downturn in foundation giving. This report was prepared by the Foundation Center with Native Americans in Philanthropy. Other key findings of the report include:

• The top 10 funders for Native Americans in 2009 accounted for close to 60 percent of grant dollars.
• Education received the largest share of foundation giving for Native Americans in 2009.
• Most foundation funding for Native Americans in 2009 supported organizations not affiliated with tribal governments.
• Recipients located in three of the country's seven major regions (Northeast, Midwest, and Southwest) captured more than two-thirds of grant dollars benefiting Native Americans in 2009.
• Eight of the top 25 recipients are Native-led or for the exclusive benefit of Native Americans.

To download a copy of the report, go to:

Resource of the Week – Just-In-Time Board Orientation Webinar

This webinar has been designed in response to the expressed concern that it can sometimes take new board members several months or more to fully understand their roles and responsibilities. Just-In-Time Board Orientation will provide a clear, crisp picture of your board member's responsibilities in policy development, strategic planning, fiduciary duties, fundraising, and oversight functions. This session will provide information, tools and techniques needed to bring new board members up to speed quickly. It will increase their confidence and their productivity in board and committee meetings right from the start. As a result, new board members will be better able to "hit the ground running." Just-in-Time Board Orientation can even be offered to prospective board members to assist them in making an informed decision about whether to join your board. The session can also help current board leaders re-focus their efforts. Special features include : Attendees will receive a board orientation resource manual in advance of the webinar. After the webinar, they will receive the PowerPoint presentation file as well as free access to the Create the Future Webinars Blog, an online learning community where webinar participants can get answers to questions, post comments, find and share resources, and more. The webinar is offered on a quarterly basis. For more information about the schedule and to register, go to:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Saving your PowerPoint 2010 Presentation as a Video

There are a number of new features in PowerPoint 2010 which allow you to enhance your presentations with video, images and animations. During the coming weeks we will be publishing a series of tips that introduce you to these amazing new tools. Create a Video is one of these new features. Here’s how it works

• Create your presentation
• Save the presentation
• Click the File tab
• Click Save & Send in the left pane
• Under File Types, click Create a video
• Make changes in the right pane, if necessary
• Click the Create Video button

After you create a video, you can share it with others by:
• Sending it as an e-mail attachment
• Burning it to a DVD disc
• Uploading it to a video sharing Web site such as YouTube
• Posting it on your website or other shared location

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