Friday, June 17, 2011

June 15th Issue of NPT Released

The June 15th Issue of The NonProfit Times was released this week.  If you have already subscribed, you probably have received your copy in the mail (or will be soon).  In the meantime, here is an excerpt from one of the articles in the issue:

Marketing to Hispanics Is More Than Language

By Samuel J. Fanburg

The March of Dimes (MoD) began a direct response campaign to Hispanic donor prospects in 2006 after recognizing that not only was this a population with formidable purchasing power, but that the organization provided services used by people in the demographic group.

A year later the White Plains, N.Y.-based MoD generated $122,305 by mailing donor acquisition packages to 602,000 Hispanic households and $54,184 by mailing 148,771 renewal packages. After reigning in efforts during the recent recession, Kim Haywood, vice president of direct response fundraising, said the organization has begun discussing implementation of new direct mail packages into the market segment.

Based on 2010 data from the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau, more than half of the growth of the United States population between 2000-2010 was due to an increase in the Hispanic community. The Hispanic population grew 43 percent to 47.7 million people. By 2050, estimates have Hispanics representing 24 percent of the U.S. population and are expected to hit 102.5 million, making roughly one of every four Americans having Hispanic ethnicity.

Purchasing power is expected to triple to $1.5 trillion by 2016, and 33.9 percent of the Hispanic population is younger than age of 18.

MoD began its Hispanic direct mail campaign by first renting lists from popular magazines, such as People en Espanol and Latino Magazine. Starting with a Spanish only website,, meaning “born healthy,” MoD tried to cater to the cultural values of Hispanics, according to MoD's Director of Latino Outreach, Lilliam Acosta-Sanchez.

“Using our Spanish language website to specifically reach out to Spanish Latinas, the March of Dimes has really been able build a brand. Hispanics are able to use a site that is not only culturally relevant, but linguistically as well. The content and imagery is also different, in order to meet the needs of women and family,” said Acosta-Sanchez.

To read the rest of this article, as well as some of the others in this issue, head on over to  And if you haven't already, subscribe today!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Save The Children Picks Miles For CEO

Carolyn Miles will become the next CEO of Save The Children, according to a story just posted on The NonProfit Times website.  She will become the first woman CEO in the 80-year history of the organization when she assumes the position on September 1st.  Her rise to chief executive comes after it was announced that the current CEO, Charles F. MacCormack, would be stepping down after 18 years.  Here is an excerpt from the NPT story:

“Our leadership committee considered many extraordinary candidates for this position during a nationwide search,” said Anne Mulcahy, Save the Children's board chair and former Xerox CEO. “But it soon became very clear to all of us that Carolyn was the right choice to continue our important work on behalf of children in need and to create a new vision for the future. She has an in-depth knowledge of global children's issues, many years of experience in leading large organizations and is highly results driven. But most importantly, she has an authentic passion for our mission, to make lasting change in the lives of the children who need us most.”

Miles joined Save the Children in 1998, as associate vice president for sponsorship and marketing, and was appointed executive vice president and COO in 2004. Previously, she worked for American Express in New York and Hong Kong and was a successful private entrepreneur. She received an M.B.A. from the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business, where she now serves on the Board, and has a B.A. from Bucknell University. Miles is also on the Board of Directors of the Blackbaud Corporation.

“I am thrilled with the Board's decision and honored to be asked to head the organization I believe is making the greatest difference for children and families around the world,” said Miles.

To read the full story, visit NPT's website.

7 Tips to Confront "Poor Performers"

Nothing is certain but death and taxes.  You can add below average employees to that list.

As a nonprofit manager, you are always going to have to handle less than ideal employees.  It's simply a fact of life.  How you confront these individuals can determine how successful your organization can be.  It would seem there are only two ways to deal with these types of workers: You can avoid a potentially messy confrontation and hope they improve.  Or, you can meet with the problematic employee and tell them to shape up or ship out.  In his book How to Lead by THE BOOK, Dave Anderson (founder of The Matthew 25:35 Foundation) says there is actually a middle ground.  By combining gentleness with firmness, a strong nonprofit manager can approach these "poor performers" in a way that will get them to perform better without making a scene.  He lists 7 ways to get the most out of these confrontations:

  1. Confront with class: Anderson urges respect when confronting problematic employees. Keeping that in mind, it is best to discuss problems with poor performers in private rather than bringing up the problems in front of their colleagues.  Making a mistake is embarrassing enough without it having to be revealed to everyone in the office.
  2. Nix favoritism: Top performers are another constant for any nonprofit organization.  But just because this individual hits the proverbial home run 99% of the time doesn't mean you should be cutting them slack if they happen to strike out once or twice.  This will severely undermine the culture of your organization, as well as your credibility as a manager.
  3. Make sure the correction fits the "crime": Poor performers should be punished appropriately for whatever mistake they made.  If it was only a small error, there is no need to institute harsh penalties for them.  Anderson lists problems that stem from poor attitude, a lack of respect for the values of the company, or an overly inflated ego as issues that must be corrected most forcibly.
  4. Beware of committing a false kindness: Never try to forgo confrontational talk by just giving positive reinforcement.  You might think this will help them perform better, but according to Anderson you are actually showing a lack of caring.  He says that you should confront these problems before they get too big.  This will help to teach employees that their leader cares about how work is conducted in the organization.
  5. Choose your battles wisely: A strong nonprofit leader will be able to know when a response is needed rather than a rebuke.  Anderson uses the example of a mostly reliable employee coming in late one day.  Instead of yelling at this employee, he suggests inquiring with them whether everything is all right.  Tardiness from a repeat offender, on the other hand, would warrant a much different response.
  6. Follow up with follow-through: Always offer advice and encouragement after your initial confrontation with a poor performer.  Failing to do this will leave the employee with no knowledge of what they need to do to improve.  As Anderson says, it's like going to a doctor for a diagnosis and then refusing to take the prescribed medicine.
  7. Don't dig up the past: As tempting as it may be, you should never bring up past mistakes to poor performers.  It does no good to live in the past.  What's important is to correct the current problem, and bringing up dirty laundry won't help that.
Interested in reading more about what Dave Anderson has to say?  Visit the website for How to Lead by THE BOOK at  And if you want even more management tips similar to these, visit The NonProfit Times.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

NPTtv Summary: Tax Policy Hurts Charity, Says CBO

New findings by the Congressional Budget Office suggest that potential changes in the federal tax code could leave a huge mark on the nonprofit sector.

The CBO says that adding a contribution floor would reduce the total federal tax subsidy, as well as donations to charity. The reduction in the subsidy would lead to an increase of government revenue larger than the reduction of giving, whether measured in dollars or a percentage change. Introducing a floor would continue to provide a tax incentive for giving above its level. At the same time, it might reduce the tax subsidy for donations that people might have made; even without a tax incentive.

Here are some additional findings by the CBO report:

  • Allowing all taxpayers to claim a deduction for charitable giving would have increased donations in 2006 by $2 billion (or 1%).
  • This also would have increased the total tax subsidy by $5.2 billion (or 13%).
  • Combining a deduction for all taxpayers with a contribution floor could increase donations and decrease the tax subsidy. 

NPTtv Summary: Kids Serve Founder Charged in Child Porn Case

The director of a San Francisco-based arts group faces jail time for allegedly possessing child pornography.

After The FBI traced suspicious online activity coming from the house of Anthony Josef Norris, who founded Kids Serve Youth Murals more than a decade ago, they decided to investigate further.  This lead them to discover 600 explicit images of children.  Norris faces a maximum jail sentence of 10 years. He was released from prison after posting a $200,000 bond.  He may be in for even bigger trouble, however, as investigators work to determine if any of the children involved with Kids Serve were harmed by Norris.

The fall out from these revelations have hit Kids Serve very hard.  The city of San Francisco, which had already given $53,000 to the organization this year, has suspended all further funding for Kids Serve.  The organization’s website has also been shut down.

NPTtv Summary: Homelessness Gets Slam Dunked

An NBA superstar is bring his game into the philanthropic court.

The Los Angeles Laker's Kobe Bryant has launched the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation, which aims to help the homeless in LA.

Bryant made the announcement at a news conference at My Friends Place, a nonprofit resource center that offers free emergency services to about 1,600 homeless people a year. The goal for the new charity is to provide permanent housing and career/educational resources for the homeless.

If you would like to learn more about Kobe's charity, visit it's website at

NPTtv Summary: Reel Grrls Dumps Comcast

Reel Grrls, a Seattle-based nonprofit that teaches film production and media literacy to teenagers, is parting ways with Comcast after a dispute over a tweet.

The trouble all started when the organization sent out a message on Twitter that questioned Comcast’s hiring of former FCC chairwoman Meridith Atwell Baker. The following day, a VP at the cable company told Reel Grrls they could no longer give them an $18,000 grant to support a summer film program. After some media backlash, Comcast publicly apologized. They said the executive was not acting under company policy and offered to continue their funding of Reel Grrls.

It would appear the apology came too late.  The nonprofit has since rejected Comcast’s offer. So how will they cover the costs of their summer program?  A little online fundraising.  They recently e-mailed their supporters with a video asking them to donate to cover the cost of the program. Within two weeks, the campaign raised $24,000 from 600 individual donors.  Nearly all of these were new donors.

New NPTtv Webcast Now Available

The newest webcast of The NonProfit Times TV is now up.  Here are the stories in this episode:

As always, you can expect summaries of each of these stories to follow shortly.  In the meantime, go to NPTtv to watch the webcast!