Resolving to Succeed in 2013


Whether you are leading a company, a small business or a nonprofit organization, you can start the New Year with a few simple resolutions that will increase your chances for success. Here are 10 simple and easy "success" ideas offered by Synergies Consulting Group:


1. Be intentional about surrounding yourself with individuals who represent a broad range of ideas, expertise and backgrounds and who will fuel your creative juices. Identify the expertise you need and go after it whether among staff, board of directors or an advisory board as they can be the sparks to ignite organizational dynamism. 

2. Review your organization's mission frequently and align it with your strategic plans. Organizations that stay true to their mission and manifest it through their strategic plans have focus, purpose and a road map to success.   


3. Ensure that your strategic plans include a thoughtful analysis or review of your marketing and communication requirements. Today's reliance on technology means your organization must have a well-defined narrative and use technology to deliver it. Access to potential audiences has never been greater.    


4. Professional development is a must! Your personal and organizational success depends on your staying current and keeping your professional tools sharp. Attend professional conferences, take a course, enroll in a leadership class, join a list serve in your field and benchmark with the best.   


5. Sharpen your financial eye - do you understand all aspects of your budget and importantly do you know and understand what investments are needed in your organization to grow and thrive in the current and future environment? Make an investment plan for your organization.   


6. Determine whether your organization can achieve cost savings by developing a cadre of "virtual staff." Areas where this could be effective include bookkeeping, marketing, communications, grant writing, and technology.   


7. This may be the year to bid or re-bid for services such as insurance coverage, accounting, banking, printing, legal, and marketing. What are the services you  could buy more cheaply if you focused this year?    


8. Your data base is the nerve center and potential gold mine of your organization and yet customer and or donor information may be incomplete, inaccurate, misspelled, or duplicative. Remember the term garbage in, garbage out (GIGO)? No less true today than years ago! Do you have the right data base software for your organization and is it current and properly utilized? Creating information protocols could lead to new customers, donors and resources.    


9. Your organization depends on your reputation - the good opinion of others. What are you doing in your community and with your customers or donors to ensure their ongoing support and their willingness to bring others to you? You might want to consider working on a community wide project, enrolling in a Leadership program in your community, joining a board, speaking at local civic groups. Be seen and be heard!   


10. Successful organizations collaborate with others recognizing that collective energy can accomplish much more than a single entity. It may take a little longer to reach consensus but in the end the project is usually more dynamic, bigger than originally planned, and may help you accomplish many of your personal and professional goals. Who can you align with to accomplish your 2013 goals?


As we enter 2013 Synergies Consulting Group thanks our current and past clients for your business. We are most grateful to have had the opportunity to work with you. We wish you a prosperous and healthy New Year and hope a few of our "success" ideas will resonate.

Synergies in the Community:
Jingle Bell runners Sue Emerson, Barbara Lawson, Chris Marasco, Tom Drake and Mary Ann Scully supporting the Arthritis Foundation

Synergies Consulting Group partner Barbara Lawson works to cross-market her many endeavors. She serves on the boards of Howard Bank, one of the most philanthropic banks in the region, and Leadership Howard County. When the staff of Howard Bank organized to support the Arthritis Foundation's Jingle Bell Run in December, Barbara signed on with other bank employees including Leadership grads Chris Marasco and Tom Drake and supporter Mary Ann Scully. She recruited Sue Emerson Leadership marketing director and a veteran runner to run with her. Howard Bank took first place in dollars raised (over $7500) to support research that will benefit the tens of thousands folks suffering from this painful and debilitating disease. In 2012 Barbara ran for the Women's Giving Circle, National Family Resiliency Center and the Arthritis Foundation, she says an easy and fun way to support worthy causes!


Do you have an event you would like to promote through the Synergies Newsletter? Then please send the information to We publish bi-monthly and will make every effort to list your organization's event well before it happens.

Reputation Management: A continuous activity

In our last newsletter, we addressed the issue of reputation protection and gave five easy steps to start protecting the valuable asset that is your brand. In an on-going effort to assist you in that process, we will publish additional thoughts on reputation protection from time to time. This next idea is relatively simple to implement even for organizations limited time and money.


Conduct a reputation audit with some frequency. Although it is great to have the budget for formal research, a reputation audit does not have to be a major investment or overwhelmingly time-consuming. Take time to ask your various stakeholders what they are thinking, feeling and hearing about the organization. And track those perceptions over time.


Take the pulse of the brand using whatever feedback mechanisms are readily available - customer interviews, letters from constituents, the classic "suggestion" box. If customers have to wait in a waiting area, give them an opportunity to give feedback on the spot. And take time to respond to the feedback directly or indirectly.


Google and other search engines provide easy access to what is being said or written about you. Search your own organization's name with some frequency to gather what is being said and written about you and your issues. Create an automatic search of local media to identify what is being said about you. Track key words. Where these are positive, you can use them in your own communications. When these are negative, you have identified potential issues to solve before they grow.


Most of these steps can be done on your own. For a more formal assessment, Synergies Partners are available to conduct communications audits and to set up feedback systems when you are ready. Contact any of the Synergies Partners through our website,

Client Activities

The Esophageal Cancer Action Network (ECAN) will hold its 6th Annual fundraising event on Saturday, April 6, 2013 at the Renaissance Hotel in Baltimore. The event is both fun and meaningful. More information and tickets are available through the website,

About Us

Synergies Consulting Group provides the leadership and management experience to help clients build more effective and profitable organizations. Our experience informs our solutions. We listen closely to our clients and devise solutions to meet their specific needs. For more information visit