The Good Counsel Blog


Oct

29

2012
What Would Adam Smith Say?

What Would Adam Smith Say?

 A post by James V. Toscano The headline reads: “A Scoop of Social Responsibility: Ben and Jerry’s the B Corp” The NonProfit Quarterly’s Nonprofit Headlines goes on to report that Unilever’s Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Company is the first sub of a publicly traded corporation to be certified as a B corporation. And what is a B Corporation? The B Corporation website is quite explicit: “B Corp certification is to sustainable business what Fair Trade certification is to coffee or USDA Organic certification is to milk. B Corps are certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of…

Read More


Oct

24

2012
The Revenue Crisis

The Revenue Crisis

 A post by James V. Toscano The traditional nonprofit revenue model is broken.  Revenue formulas are out of date. Contributions just don’t flow in the same way. Some revenue taps have dried up. Others, such as government, are fading. Traditional methods don’t work as well. It’s time to reimagined the nonprofit revenue paradigm. Attention and concern lately have focused on measuring results and impact. However, if we lack the resources to do the work, we get no results. Revenue always precedes results in priority. And if revenue sources demand results but do not pay to evaluate and obtain results, we…

Read More


Oct

19

2012

A New Paradigm?

 A post by James V. Toscano  Traditionally, help in supporting poor and vulnerable populations was largely the responsibility of government, foundations and nonprofits. There didn’t seem to be opportunity for the third sector, the market, to intervene in significant ways. Certainly, businesses give charitable dollars to help alleviate such conditions, but it has never been its focus for profits. Now, the ground is shifting. Privatization of some governmental functions has attracted the for-profit sector, now in a number of areas. Politicians of one stripe or another are talking about new ways to meet societal need through market-based competition, especially in…

Read More


Oct

11

2012

Book Review

A Review by James V Toscano  Linda Lysakowski, ACFRE, is well-known to us all. One of the few development professionals to have the Advanced Certified Fund Raising Executive distinction, she is prolific in her writing, distinguished in her consulting and highly esteemed in her teaching.  In Fundraising for the Genius (and here it’s for the genius in us all), Lysakowski has truly given us a gift, a tour de force, a comprehensive, knowledgeable, wise and practical overview of the elements of resource development. A definitive look at what we do!


Sep

28

2012

More Money for Good, More or Less

 A post by James V. Toscano In a recent posting on “Apples or Oranges,” I suggested a number of problems with Charity Navigator’s methods in trying to combine measures of financial health and of transparency and accountability into some kind of measure of effectiveness. There are number of other organizations besides Charity Navigator attempting to guide donors on the effectiveness of nonprofit organizations, including Hope Consulting, Guidestar, Foundation Center, Better Business Bureau and our own Charities Review Council, to name but a few in a crowded field. Ultimately, at least for now, the holy grail is the attempt to measure and report…

Read More


Sep

18

2012
Guest Post from the UK – Is Offline Fundraising Needed in The Current Online Era?

Guest Post from the UK – Is Offline Fundraising Needed in The Current Online Era?

 Post by Alison Richmond Where do you go to raise money? Traditional wisdom says TV commercials, mail-in forms and even door-to-door. But things are changing in the age of the internet – virtual giving is growing. Once considered a luxury, online fundraising is now a standard procedure for most charities and other non-profit organizations. Online fundraising has netted over €15 billion since 2010, a number that only continues to rise with the increasing prevalence of paperless banking.* So what’s the appeal? For one, online fundraising is easy and convenient. It requires no “sales pitch” and no haggard afternoons standing on street…

Read More


Sep

10

2012

Moving the Needle

 A post by James V. Toscano In an article in Nonprofit Quarterly, “Strategic Philanthropy: Who Wins and Loses?” Prentice Zinn, using a variety of reasons, outlines the argument against funding sources alone deciding where to focus their grants as part of their version of a  strategic initiative, often involving outcomes measurement and scaling up service. In a trenchant major point, he states: “Today, the field of philanthropy is seeing a relative explosion of conversations, debate, and reflection about how it can be more effective. Add to this rich exchange of information a dose of organizational narcissism, careerism, and peer pressure…

Read More


Aug

28

2012
Apples or Oranges?

Apples or Oranges?

 A post by James V. Toscano The news story states that Charity Navigator’s 2012 Metro Market Study “reveals the regional differences in the performance of the nation’s biggest charities.” The study compares the median process scores on Financial Health (FH) and on Accountability and Transparency (AT) of the largest nonprofits in each of the thirty largest metropolitan areas. The study covers 56% of the 5500 charities evaluated by Charity Navigator, accounting for 67% of both revenue and expenditure of the group. Using this process methodology, Houston, Kansas City, St. Louis, Cincinnati and Portland are highest rated, while Orlando, Tampa/St. Petersburg,…

Read More


Aug

17

2012

Two Themes – Part Two

 A post by James V. Toscano Research shows that there is additional private funding for nonprofits available from donors interested in high-level impact investing. We also know another significant potential is the switching of existing donations to these very same high impact investments. Estimates of both reach approximately $50 billion, about one-sixth of current private donations. Now, the redoing of government funding and appropriations for social impact guarantees and/or for impact bonding funds is happening. Some of these new revenue arrangements need intermediaries, some get payback only if success is achieved, but all have one element in common: the achieving…

Read More



Page 9 of 15« First...7891011...Last »