I was recently the guest speaker at the Jackson Rotary and as Monica Moser was introducing me, she shared that I am a avid fan of my kids and have a "collection" of cow bells that I take to football games.
The background to that story is that after games, I would ask my kids if they could hear me - above the noise of the game, the noise of the opposing team, the noise of the crowd. And their answer was: "No" - the family joke is that if they had only said yes...
It was so important to me that they knew I was watching THEM, and was cheering THEM on, I saw their successes and knew their challenges. I did see that play - and I did see that tackle, that block. So, I started collecting cow bells. I bring about 4 to every game. I have pom poms and an assortment of fan gear. Some may say I take my role a bit too seriously. But you and I know better.
Yes, they can hear me now. They know I am there and am cheering on each success or encouraging them to get up, brush off and try again.
Since I was at Rotary to promote not only what Nonprofit Network does - but what our members are doing, and their struggles and successes - it occurred to me that it is as important to me to know YOU, our members, can hear me cheering you on, too.
I may not be able to be on the field with you, but I am here, encouraging you to get up, brush off and try again - and when you make it to the end zone, I have a cow bell in each hand going crazy.
Above the noise of the game, the noise of the opposing team, the noise of the crowd - I hope you can hear me.
|Our Fall Conference SAVE THE DATE!! Friday, November 4th
We are thrilled with how the lineup is coming along for our fall conference. The following speakers have already been confirmed:
- David Near, Near Consulting Group - Taking your Board to the Next Level
- Dan Robin, Nonprofit Enterprise at Work - Recruitment and Onboarding for an Engaged Board
- Diana Kern, Nonprofit Enterprise at Work - How to Engage your Board in Fundraising
- Jerry Pinney, Jerry Pinney & Associates - The Art of Leadership and The Five Dysfunctions of a Team
- Donna Mullins, Michigan Department of Human Services - Avoiding Communication Potholes
- Georgeann Herbert, Detroit Public TV - Storytelling
- Tamela Spicer, Consultant - Growing Exceptional Events
- Phil Wezenski, Toy House & Baby Too - Staff and Board Meetings that Everyone Wants to Attend
- Allison Treppa, Michigan Nonprofit Association - Creating a Communication Plan
- Dennis Dupre, Detroit Executive Service Corps - Nonprofit Finance and Oversight
And we aren't done yet! Look for registration information to be available soon!
Cost-Cutting Ideas You Might Not Have Thought Of Barbara Haislip, Wall Street Journal
Lower the Cost of Debt
The interest rate being charged on debt is more important than the amount owed, says Charles D. Katz, an accountant in Sudbury, Mass. So, he advises listing all debts owed by your company, starting with the highest interest rate and going on down. Pay the minimums on the lower-cost debts, and pay off the highest-cost debt as fast as possible.
Let Workers Telecommute
Craig Smith, founder and CEO of Trinity Insight LLC, an e-commerce consulting agency in Philadelphia, boosted his company's efficiency with free software that lets employees access their office computers from home. Before these tools, such as LogMeIn, Trinity Insight would have to deal with employee absences for doctor appointments or family illness. That meant key tasks weren't being done in a timely matter. Mr. Smith says, "Having employees being able to get tasks done from home allows the business to run more effectively and allows us to ensure that client needs are being met, while at the same time allowing our employees to have a work/life balance."
Mr. Andrawes of Personalwine urges the procurement team at his Austin, Texas, company to get bids from three different vendors to ensure the best deal. And he encourages them to ask vendors for 10% off the cost of any item they're purchasing. "Asking for discounts and fighting for lower prices will save you tens of thousands of dollars," Mr. Andrawes says. "It never hurts to negotiate, because the vendors are asking for discounts themselves from their suppliers, everyone is doing it."
Mr. Andrawes also suggests creating a "profit savings" pool, where the company contributes 2% of any savings on a purchase to its employees.
After using the practice with two of his employees, he says, he cut the cost of wine accessories and office supplies by some $14,000 last year.
Get a Check
For transactions over $1,000, Personalwine's Mr. Andrawes gives a 1% incentive to his sales reps to close deals with personal checks or cashier's checks instead of credit cards. This step saves the nearly 4% transaction fee that merchants must pay credit-card processing companies. "We saved $8,000 in transaction fees last year and it cost me $1,000 in incentives," he says.
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