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Today's guest blogger is one of our extraordinary volunteers, Suzanne Boyd - who blogs here.  Suzanne is an HR professional - and one of those incredibly smart, lively and engaged people that makes me feel a little bit inadequate in the best possible way. Suzanne facilitates training for Volunteer Vancouver. In this case, she was the presenter at a Books for Breakfast event. For more information on that program, check out the propaganda at the bottom of this post.

Building Your Organization to Change

Guest blog by Suzanne Boyd
Partner, Noverra Consulting & Capital Partners

Several months...

If you're following this blog regularly, then you know I haven't posted in a while. I've been in transition as I move to Minneapolis, Minnesota and take up residence. And yet, here I am, from Minneapolis, writing this blog. I'm paid to write this blog; it's part of my job description.

"So how does that work?", you may ask. Well, I am continuing to work for Volunteer Vancouver on contract, remotely. And pretty part-time. Which leads me to today's topic of buses, employment and work. At Volunteer Vancouver we are very dedicated to getting the "right people on the bus", as Jim Collins tell us...

Today's guest bloggers  are Anil Patel, Executive Director and Jen Grebeldinger, Program Manager of The Framework Foundation, possibly better known for their Timeraiser events across Canada. And in the name of full disclosure, Volunteer Vancouver does work with the Timeraiser crew so it's a tainted, but genuine full endorsement that I can offer on everything these guys touch. Their model of engaging all their stakeholders, via their Civic Footprint, might be one of the coolest things I've ever seen.

Quick Propaganda from the authors: We are quite excited to be a few days away from the 2nd...

Today's guest blogger is Colleen Kelly, Executive Director of Volunteer Vancouver. This topic is near and dear to my heart, as I work on a program to create learning and networking opportunities for the next leaders of Vancouver's not-for-profit sector through our Next Leaders Network. It's a completely selfish effort, as I think I might be one of these "next leaders", and certainly don't know exactly how or when the "next" may turn into "current". Perhaps it has already?

When Will the Next Leaders Flourish?
by Colleen Kelly

When I walked by the Water-Wise Garden in Surrey City Hall Park this...

I recently read Malcolm Gladwell's newest book, Outliers. And I'll start this post by noting that I am a fan of The Tipping Point and never got around to Blink. I read the book because I agreed to present the material to a workshop, and talk about how to apply Gladwell's theories to the not-for-profit sector. Being a cynic, I contemplated getting up in the front of the room and saying "you can't" and sitting down.

Because this presentation was to be attended by my boss, I decided not to do this. But here is what I essentially think of this book: like many other reviewers I've found online...

Do you talk about knowledge transfer at your office?

We certainly do at Volunteer Vancouver. We actually offer training to other organizations on how to create a continuity of leadership among their staff, but that doesn't exactly solve the problem of what's in my head and how to get that out and put it in someone else's.

Knowledge transfer is a tough topic, and I find it's hard to find "experts" on knowledge transfer. Often people start to talk about IT systems when you mention knowledge transfer, but it's more than that to me. Knowledge isn't someone's phone number and alma mater - it's why...

Somewhere in my meanderings through the internet today, I came across an incredibly thought provoking post by Sidney Hargro on the future of the not-for-profit sector and how we should react to the recession in positive ways. Hargro poses three critical questions we as a sector should be contemplating:

  1. What services and systems are most crucial to the long-term health of our community and therefore should be lifted up for community support and held harmless to the best of our ability?
  2. How can we streamline, restructure, and prepare these services and systems (with no sacred cow operations) for...

So the conference is wrapping up and I have enjoyed myself immensely. Except for the aforementioned heat. But anyway.

One aspect of this conference that is both interesting and different than other conferences I've attended is the backdrop of the economic crisis. 

This context is changing the way all capacity builders do their work with organizations. And its affect on the workshop titles would be funny if it weren't. Presenters have added some version of "In These Times..." to every title. The conference's attendance is also lower than in past years. Now that's not just the effect of the...

Let me start by saying it is really REALLY hot in Palm Springs. I'm not sure my brain can actually function in this type of heat. I am now more convinced than ever that Vancouver is, actually, heaven on earth. At least you can walk outside during the day, anyway. But other than that, I am enjoying the annual Alliance Conference very much, though it's just getting going.

Yesterday I attended the pre-day for those who work at MSO's (Management Support Organizations). Basically, that's organizations whose missions are to build capacity in the sector through training, education and consulting...

Just a quick entry to let everyone know that I'll be blogging at the Alliance for Nonprofit Management Conference that takes place July 15-17 in Palm Springs. The Alliance is a US-based association for organizations and consultants that build capacity in the not-for-profit sector. I'm one of very few Canadian attendees, so I'll try and represent!

I'm joined by fellow bloggers  John Brothers, Heather Carpenter, Scott Bechtler-Levin and probably some others, too. Stay tuned for our posts about the conference. Also, follow our updates on twitter - follow me @3manypuppies and look for hashtag...

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