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Helping Organizations Thrive 
September 2015 Edition
Welcome to my September 2015 email newsletter. 

The mission of Jonathan Poisner Strategic Consulting is to make the world a better place by helping mission-driven 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 (mostly) 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

Most editions of this newsletter contain a section I call "What Works." 

In this edition, I return to a series of lessons I'm writing entitled: "Why Organizations Go Off Course."
Why Organizations Go Off Course details a series of lessons I've learned as an Executive Director, boad member, and consultant.

This series offers a counterpoint to the lessons in another series:Why Organizations Thrive.
Why Organizations Go Off Course Lesson Fourteen is: Don't accept mediocrity in staff.

Time and again, when I've seen organizations flounder and been able to poke under the hood, I encounter Executive Directors and other staff with what I would describe as poor leadership skills that plays out in mediocre employee performance.

Of course, mediocre Executive Directors tend to accept mediocre staff. Indeed, mediocre Executives may prefer to surround themselves with others who won't outshine them.

So how can boards identify if they are heading off course in this way?

And how can strong Executive Directors ensure they surround themselves with strong staff?

Read the rest of this article.

Download the article as a PDF.
Recent Success Stories and New Clients

It's not too late to register for my September 23rd workshop at the Hatch: Major Donor Fundraising 101. 

In early September, I facilitated a board and staff planning retreat for New Era Colorado as part of a strategic planning project.  Over the next month, we'll be translating their decisions into a strategic plan.

I am in the midst of six month project working with the National Wildlife Refuge Association to provide fundraising training and coaching for its member organizations.  In August, I led a workshop in Homer, Alaska.  Earlier this month, I led a workshop at the Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma.  In mid-October, I'll be leading a workshop at the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia.

I'm in the middle of a several month development consulting engagement with the Central Oregon Environmental Center.  I recently spent a day in Bend working separately with the board and staff on a combination of training and planning. 

I am consulting on behalf of several organizations working to protect the climate, aimed at generating a more aligned and effective campaign to cap/reduce carbon emissions during the next session of the Oregon Legislature.  I'll be facilitating a strategy session on October 28th.

I am just beginning a six month consulting engagement with the Bus Federation to facilitate several convenings of board and affiliate leaders aimed at finalizing a strategic framework for the organization and grappling with other challenges.   

This Friday, I will be facilitating a board retreat for the Foundation for Vancouver Public Schools.

Check out my website for a complete list of all my clients.
Recent Blog Entries and Tip Sheets

Note: I am actively looking for Guest Blog submissions.  If you have some thoughts to share on any aspect of organizational development, shoot me an email and we can discuss length, timing, etc.

Your Organization is an Intermediary

Tips for Mail and Email Fundraising

Tips for Effective Board Meetings

Questions (from Joan Garry) to ask candidates for your fundraising job

Donor Meeting Locations

Science Fiction and my Call to Service

The Power of Asking Good Questions

The BIggest Barrier to Effective Major Donor Fundraising

No Magic Words, but Themes Matter

A Goal is not an Activity

To Follow your Dreams, Learn to Say No

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

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