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Helping Organizations Thrive 
March 2012 Edition
Welcome to my March 2012 email newsletter. 

The mission of Jonathan Poisner Strategic Consulting is to help progressive organizations thrive.  I do that by assisting my clients with strategic planning, campaign planning, coalition building, fundraising, communications, and other organizational development challenges.

To keep people informed about my work, I set up this monthly e-newsletter.  If you want to unsubscribe, just look for the link at the bottom.   My February edition can be read in my archive.

For a complete lists of the consulting services I offer, check out my website.
What Works

Each edition of this newsletter contains a section I call "What Works." 

Most editions include sections from one of two longer articles I'm writing.  Why Organizations Thrive  and Why Organizations Go Off Course detail lessons I learned while growing the Oregon League of Conservation Voters (OLCV), buttressed by my observations of dozens of other groups both in Oregon and across the country.


Collectively, I believe these lessons are a very useful set of principles that any Executive Director can use to improve their organization's capacity to fulfill its mission.


This edition takes a detour and instead reviews a book I recently read, Great by Choice, by Jim Collins.


I previously reviewed Jim Collins' monograph, Good to Great and the Social Sectors. 


In Good to Great, Collins wrote a seminal text on what separated some corporations that became great from others that remained just good or mediocre in similar industries. In Good to Great and the Social Sectors, he extrapolated on how the lessons learned apply to nonprofit organizations.


In Great by Choice, Collins and his research team subsequently address a follow-up question: why do some organizations thrive amidst chaos. Does luck differentiate them from others that fail?


While the book is based on a study of for-profit businesses that thrive/flounder under comparable circumstances, once again Collins delivers lessons that apply to all organizations, not just those motivated by profit.


Running throughout the book, Collins delivers a series of lessons based on the 1911 race to reach the South Pole between teams led by Ronald Amundsen and Robert F. Scott.   Amundsen's team reached the South Pole and returned without any deaths. Scott's entire team perished.  


Read the full review.


Download the PDF from my website.   

Recent Success Stories and New Clients

I completed my work assisting the Mount St. Helens Institute with an executive transition.

I've begun working with the Regional Marine Conservation Project of the American Littoral Society to facilitate a meeting seeking to develop a shared strategy among west coast organizations interested in conservation of forage fish species.

I'm continuing my work with the Oregon Chapter, Sierra Club, with a focus on developing a new long-term fundraising plan.  

I'm in the thick of a large strategic planning process for the Alliance for a Sustainable Colorado.  I was in Denver twice in the last month interviewing stakeholders and facilitating retreats.  One more retreat to facilitate and then we should be ready to create a superb new strategic plan for the Alliance.

I'll be in the other Portland (Maine) in mid-April at the annual conference of State LCVs.  If you're a current or prospective client and want to set aside time to talk me, sign up for one of my one-on-one coaching sessions or just shoot me an email and we can set aside time outside the official agenda.

Check out my website for a complete list of all my clients.

Other Book Reviews

Did you find my review of Great by Choice useful?

If you're interested in hearing my thoughts (and sharing yours) on books unrelated to my profession, feel free to connect with me on Good Reads by searching for my name.

If you're interested in my reviews of books that relate to organizational development, here are some of my other book reviews:

Good to Great and the Social Sectors

The Secrets of Facilitation

The Psychology of Persuasion (Part 1 of the review)

The Psychology of Persuasion (Part 2 of the review)

Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High Impact Nonprofits

The Executive Guide to Facilitating Strategy

Contact Information
Jonathan Poisner Strategic Consulting
phone: 503-490-1234

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