Email newsletter banner
Helping Organizations Thrive 
August 2012 Edition
Welcome to my August 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 most recent 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 month's lesson is Why Organizations Go Off Course Lesson 4:  Don't Avoid Internal Conflict


Organizations that develop a culture of avoiding conflict almost always suffer in the long run.


This is true within individual organizations and with coalitions.


I was once responsible for a coalition that needed to set some policy positions.


After an important meeting at which we'd set some positions, I walked back to my office with the leader of a coalition member.  I asked him how he thought the meeting went.


His response: "I was really upset with the decision we made to X."


I was perplexed because I clearly remembered when the issue of X came up that he didn't say a word.


"But you didn't say anything!," I replied. 'If you disagreed with the potential decision, why didn't you speak up?"


"I didn't want to make anyone upset," he replied.


Of course, he'd wound up upset, and because his organization was going to disagree with the coalition decision, it had set us up for even more conflict in the long run. Indeed, it took nearly a year to work through the all the problems created by this "avoidance of conflict."


So how can we tell good and bad conflict apart?  And how can we encourage good conflict? 


Read the rest of the article.  


Download the article as a PDF.  


Recent Success Stories and New Clients

I have begun a six month project in which I'll be providing a variety of fundraising consulting services to the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

I am in the middle of a strategic planning project for the  Denver Region Mobility and Access Council, which coordinates the Denver-region effort to provide transit options for people seniors, people with disabilities, and others with access challenges.  We held a great planning retreat in mid-July, and I'm now working with a planning committee to create a draft plan.  

I am in the midst of the research phase of a strategic planning project for Recycling Advocates.  We are preparing now for a mid-September board planning retreat.

I'm wrapping up my executive coaching services to leadership of Portland's Leadership & Entrepreneurship High School. 

I'm also in wrap up stage for a large strategic planning process for the Alliance for a Sustainable Colorado.

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


Looking for a presentation for your organization or coalition's conference, workshop, or event? 

I've recently updated my website to more fully describe presentations I've delivered or am prepared to deliver.  Contact me directly for more information.  
Recent Blog Entries

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

Clarifying the Why when Doing Strategic Planning

Get it Done

Nonprofit Leadership Traits

Tips for Being Innovative

Don't Take Board Relationships for Granted

Some Opening Thoughts on Leadership

Time is your Most Precious Commodity

Effective New Board Member Orientation Meetings

Tracking Time

Looking for one of my past blog entries on a particular topic?   I have now categorized my past blog entries.  Just go to my website and hover over the "blog" link on the navigation bar and you can see the topics and choose from among them. 
Contact Information
Jonathan Poisner Strategic Consulting
phone: 503-490-1234

Follow me on Twitter

Find me on Facebook
Join Our Mailing List