Geri Stengel

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June 2009

Business Incubators Increase Nonprofit and For-profit Odds of Success




 Every organization can use a pied piper – a leader who inspires people to follow. New York Women Social Entrepreneurs (NYWSE) has two: Natalia Oberti Noguera, director, and Allison Lynch, incubator manager. They recruited me to screen applicants for the program, provide training, and be a mentor.

Go With the Flow: “Good Business” Inspiration for Our Times

Good Business: Leadership, Flow, and the Making of Meaning by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi is not a new book, but its message is timeless: businesses can be more than just about making money. This resonated with me and I thought it might for you.

The Key Ingredients to Outstanding Nonprofit Performance

 All too often, during times of crisis, we focus on the negative and not the positive. That wasn’t the case last week when I attended the 2009 New York Times Company Nonprofit Excellence Awards, which spotlighted six exceptional nonprofits from the New York Metro Area. 

Anatomy of a Successful RFP

 By Howard Adam Levy

Looking to redesign your website or upgrade your agency’s branding and putting out a Request for Proposals (RFP)? Make sure you get the best consultant you can by making your RFP the best it can be. Consider this list of what to include gleaned from our 17 years of responding to RFPs.  

Innovate or Go the Way of the Dinosaur

 At this point, you’ve most likely gotten past being frozen by the depth and breadth of the recession. You’ve cut your budgets and staff to the bone and are lean and mean. If you weren’t aggressive about your business before, you are now. You have been in survival mode and made it.

Volunteerism in the Age of Obama

 I don’t know about you, but I’m fascinated by the creation of an Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation. The Obama Administration is looking to the public to help define what the government’s role should be in increasing civic participation. It also wants to know what best practices are available and how to motivate people to get involved. From time-to-time, I will provide updates on what they are doing, with an emphasis on the nonprofit sector. 

Insights About the Nonprofit Leadership Transition Process

 By John W. Corwin

During the past seven years serving a wide variety of nonprofits as interim chief executive (seven in all), I've frequently been asked to describe what it's like for an organization to transition to a new leader. Below you will find a brief summary of some key insights I have developed in the course of my experiences.

Sharpening Your Intuition Keeps Leaders Nimble

In today’s rough and tumble economy, leaders of small businesses and nonprofits are tested at every turn. For some decisions you have time to research or consult with others, but when decisions need to be made fast, without a lot of prep, your instincts need to take over.

Social Media: A New Way to Pass Wisdom on to Leaders

Did you know that only 20% of what is done on the job is learned formally? That’s a whole lot of learning – 80% -- that gets done socially or informally. Social learning happens frequently and happens a lot when colleagues get together, whether they be leaders of small businesses or nonprofits.

The Stuff of Entrepreneurs and Social Entrepreneurs: Do You Have What It Takes?

Based on the popularity of There Is Never a Bad Time to Start Up a Company and The Benefits of Starting a Business During a Recession posts, I thought I’d do a follow-up on what it personally takes to be an entrepreneur or social entrepreneur. The topic also happens to be fresh in my mind because I just taught about it in my entrepreneurship class at The New School.

What Can Small Business and Nonprofit Leaders Learn From Teenage Girls?

Who knew that teenage girls could teach entrepreneurs and nonprofit CEOs a thing or two about sharing?