Saturday, November 2, 2013

Picks of the Week: October 27 - November 9, 2013

Website of the Week -- Youth Service America
Youth Service America (YSA) improves communities by increasing the number and the diversity of young people, ages 5-25, serving in substantive roles. YSA fulfills its mission through four key strategies and program areas:

  • Large-scale public mobilization campaigns such as Global Youth Service Day, Semester of Service and Service Vote;
  • YSA Grants of more than $1 million annually, available to youth, schools & organizations around the world for youth-led service projects;
  • Resources and trainings that equip youth and adult mentors to lead high-quality, high-impact service and service-learning programs;
  • Recognition programs such as Everyday Young Heroes and the Harris Wofford Awards, which recognize exceptional youth and adult mentors who are champions of youth voice.

Publication of the Week --  Finding Allies, Building Alliances: 8 Elements that Bring and Keep People Together by Mike Leavitt and Rich McKeown

From the publisher: Your business challenges extend far beyond you and your firm, to the competitors within your industry and the regulators outside it. Finding solutions to larger issues requires cooperation between diverse stakeholders, and in this rapidly changing world, only those able to adapt and network successfully will produce fast, competitive solutions. How can leaders successfully bridge divides and turn competitors into collaborators? Leavitt and McKeown explain how a well-chosen network can become a powerful alliance. Whether you're launching a new partnership, or rehabilitating one already in progress, Finding Allies, Building Alliances will help you find workable solutions to the most complex problems.

  • Written by Mike Leavitt, former Governor of Utah who brought the 2002 Winter Olympics to Salt Lake City, former US Secretary of Health and human services, and former head of the EPA; with his former Chief of Staff and business partner Rich McKeown.
  • Includes a framework of 8 elements that will help any leader foster and maintain an effective, productive collaborative venture
  • Shows how better collaboration can not only solve problems, but boost the competitiveness and resilience in all sectors

Finding Allies, Building Alliances is essential reading for any business leader looking for transformative solutions and a sustainable future.

Trend of the Week --  Board Governance Trends

According to results from the eighth edition of Grant Thornton's National Board Governance Survey for Not-for-Profit Organizations, approximately half of respondents are confident with their programs and brand. The 2012 edition of the survey is based on responses received via an online questionnaire from 706 board members and senior management of higher education institutions; trade and professional associations; social and human service organizations; religious organizations; cultural organizations; health care organizations; and foundations. Not-for-profit organizations are emerging from the recent economic downturn stronger than ever. Over the past four years, significant numbers of not-for-profit organizations have implemented new strategic plans, restructured their organizations and made their programs more efficient as they weathered the difficult economy. According to the results from this survey, approximately half of respondents are confident with their programs and brand. Fewer still are convinced they have achieved the right expense structure or that revenue is being maximized. Confidence in staffing, structure and communication is even lower. There are a number of possible explanations for lagging confidence, including continued fallout from the nation’s financial meltdown, and recent staff reductions and structural changes that may need more time to settle in. In some organizations, further work is necessary to distinguish themselves in the new competitive landscape. To download a copy of the survey report, go to:

Resource of the Week –  Giving Circles

Giving circles are one of the fastest growing and most varied of giving models.  Giving circles can range from extremely informal settings such as four or five donors seated around a kitchen table deciding how to allocate their “coupon money” to extremely sophisticated, structured and formal programs. The concept behind giving circles, no matter what the composition or disposition, is that pooled giving has greater impact on making a difference in the community.  New Ventures in Philanthropy, a program of the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers, has developed a comprehensive web site on initiating and managing a giving circle. For more information about giving circles, go to:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Automatically Tab from Cell to Cell In Excel 2007/2010

If you have a spreadsheet with several data input cells and would like to automatically jump from cell to cell using your tab key, you can use the Protect feature to accomplish this.  In a previous tip we explain how to Protect Cells in Excel 2007/2010. After you have:

  • Unlocked the cells that can be changed and
  • Protected the worksheet

You can simply use your tab key to automatically move from cell to cell.  This can greatly simplify some types of data input and you'll learn about worksheet protection in the process!

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