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Author: Amy Coates Madsen


52 Tips in 52 Weeks: Navigating Whistleblower Policies

I read with interest a recent article from the Philadelphia Inquirer entitled “Philadelphia Mulls Protections for COVID-19 Workplace Whistleblowers.” (June 11, 2020 by Karen Kahn). The story discusses a bill that the Philadelphia City Council is considering which would protect employees who speak up about unsafe conditions in their workplaces related to COVID-19 risks and transmissions.The story cites the findings from the National Employment Law Project (NELP)’s recent study, Silenced About[…]
By Amy Coates Madsen | June 26, 2020 Read More>

52 Tips in 52 Weeks Blog: Building Public Trust

Like you, we follow the headlines. Of course, the headlines have been dominated the last few months with news and updates about the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on our communities, country and world. We’ve been keeping up with the infection rates, the numbers of deaths and recoveries, and the situations related to stay-at-home orders and news on re-opening. Most recently, we’ve been overwhelmed and profoundly saddened by the headlines about systemic racism, life-threatening situations faced[…]
By Amy Coates Madsen | June 19, 2020 Read More>

52 tips in 52 weeks blog: May I Announce My Candidacy on Your Front Steps?

News headlines in the recent past have been filled with stories of candidates for political office using nonprofit organizations as backdrops for their campaigning efforts without asking for permission and in some cases, while harming people in the process. To many, these graphics are disturbing. To others, the graphics are sickening, grotesque, or worse. What happens if a political candidate approaches your organization with a request to hold a campaign event, such as announcing their candidacy[…]
By Amy Coates Madsen | June 12, 2020 Read More>

Attention Nonprofit Consultants!

Are you ready to take your nonprofit consulting services to the next level?The Standards for Excellence Institute’s Licensed Consultant Training is an exclusive professional development initiative that gives independent consultants the knowledge, skills, and tools necessary to work with nonprofit organizations across the country interested in learning about, implementing, and becoming accredited by the Standards for Excellence Program. Applications are due July 8th for the November 2020[…]
By Amy Coates Madsen | June 11, 2020 Read More>

Saying No to Proxy Voting on your Board

Nonprofits are facing tough choices during this challenging time.As we discussed in last week’s 52 Tips blog post, nonprofit board members are needed now more than ever. Organizations are stretched, and need strong support from their governing bodies. The Standards for Excellence code offers the important tenet that “Board members are in a position of trust to ensure that resources are used to carry out the mission of the organization.” Boards cannot allow a lapse in service, especially now when[…]

Board Members: We Need You Now More Than Ever Before

We are living in unprecedented and uncertain times. For many of us, the normal cycle of work and life has been turned completely upside down. Nonprofits of all sizes are wrestling with more challenging and difficult decisions than they ever have before.To weather the current situation, we must engage in our organizational best thinking, from staff and board leadership. Every resource at our disposal should be deployed to meet the challenges. Nonprofit staff members cannot and should not be[…]

Purchasing During COVID-19

Buying supplies, equipment, and mission-critical resources have always been an art as well as a science for many nonprofits. Nonprofit leaders strive to be the best stewards of their resources and work diligently to get the most for their money while having just the right amount of inventory on hand at all times.In these times, when we’re all in the midst of the pandemic, the purchasing needs have likely changed dramatically for a lot of nonprofits. For nonprofits providing around the clock care[…]

52 tips in 52 Weeks: Check in with your board—Update their profiles

Since the Standards for Excellence program’s inception, nonprofits have received advice about how to run their board meetings, recruit new members, and avoid conflicts of interest, just to name a few of the ways we seek to strengthen boards. The Leadership section of the Standards for Excellence: An Ethics and Accountability Code for the Nonprofit Sector is a comprehensive section and includes benchmarks and best practices of the full range of board and staff leadership measures, as well as[…]

Valley Medical Center Foundation

Standards for Excellence Seal Holder, The Valley Medical Center Foundation, is working hard in the Silicon Valley to meet vital community health needs for the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, O’Connor Hospital, and St. Louise Regional Hospital—check out their blog here. To our friends at the Valley Medical Center Foundation, we are proud of the amazing ways you are serving.[…]

Data Security

In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, nonprofits across the country are facing challenges that none of us have ever had to ponder, let alone tackle, before. Issues related to assisting those we serve, our staff, and volunteer teams are perhaps more pronounced than ever. Along with all of the new challenges and difficulties, there are a host of vital management and operations tasks that have always been on our plates—and continue to be on the proverbial “to do list.” Certainly, issues[…]
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