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What Charity Executive Directors Should Be Reading and Watching, Part 2

Non-Fiction

Getaway2Give Reading ListGrit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance
by Angela Duckworth

From the back:

There is no shortage of great books to aid and inspire nonprofit executive directors to be better leaders. We’ve compiled a list that is by no means comprehensive, but it is a fantastic start. (and if you’re seeking to inspire your fundraising team and volunteers, these make great holiday gifts!). We’ve also included some recommended watching for the times when you just need to kick back a bit. AND we found so much great material — this is part 2 of our series!

Why you should share it with your fundraising team: 

Angela Duckworth is a psychologist whose research is focused on the two traits that predict achievement: grit and self-control. This book is both persuasive and inspiring. It is great for nonprofit executive directors who need a pep talk now and then, and especially for leaders who are devoted to helping people overcome difficult circumstances.


Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die: Made to Stick
by Chip Heath & Dan HeathGetaway2Give Reading List

From the back: 

Made to Stick is a book that will transform the way you communicate ideas. It’s a fast-paced tour of idea success stories (and failures)—the Nobel Prize-winning scientist who drank a glass of bacteria to prove a point about stomach ulcers; the charities who make use of the Mother Teresa Effect; the elementary-school teacher’s simulation that actually prevented prejudice. Provocative, eye-opening, and funny, Made to Stick shows us the principles of successful ideas at work—and how we can apply these rules to making our own messages “stick.”

Why you should share it with your fundraising team: 

As the executive director, you know the ins and outs of your organization. But it’s entirely possible that the messages you want to convey aren’t getting through, precisely because you know so much! Made to Stick will help you craft stories and messages — for donors and your team — so that your ideas stick.


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Fiction 

Getaway2Give Reading ListThe Five Dysfunctions of a Team
by Patrick Lencioni

From the back: 

Kathryn Petersen, Decision Tech’s CEO, faces the ultimate leadership crisis: Uniting a team in such disarray that it threatens to bring down the entire company. Will she succeed? Will she be fired? Will the company fail? Lencioni’s utterly gripping tale serves as a timeless reminder that leadership requires as much courage as it does insight. Throughout the story, Lencioni reveals the five dysfunctions which go to the very heart of why teams often struggle. He outlines a powerful model and actionable steps that can be used to overcome these common hurdles and build a cohesive, effective team.

Why you should share it with your fundraising team: 

It’s fiction, so it’s very readable, but it also provides information you can learn from to build a better team and become an exceptional nonprofit executive director.


Getaway2Give Reading ListA Man Called Ove
by Fredrik Backman

From the back: 

Meet Ove. He’s a curmudgeon—the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People call him “the bitter neighbor from hell.” But must Ove be bitter just because he doesn’t walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time? Behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness. So when one November morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove’s mailbox, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unexpected friendship, and the ancient art of backing up a U-Haul. All of which will change one cranky old man and a local residents’ association to their very foundations.

Why you should share it with your fundraising team: 

This story is uplifting and encouraging, and isn’t that enough reason? But this is also a story about community and connection, which is at the heart of nonprofit work. You’ll fall in love with these characters, especially Ove.


Videos

The Secrets of Highly Successful Groups by Daniel Coyle: Daniel Coyle is also the author of The Talent Code and The Culture Code. In this talk, he not only explains what makes effective organizations tick, but also identifies the key factors that can generate team cohesion in any walk of life. WATCH HERE

Give – Towards the end of 2016, NBC launched a reality show about small charities. Give shined a light on these organizations, sending philanthropically-minded celebrities from film, television, music, sports and business to learn about their practices. Each episode, a celebrity ambassador visits two charities that employ innovation and a dedication to positive change in their communities and the world, helping to spread the inspirational stories of the quiet heroes behind the scenes and their missions to make a better society. You can watch all 33 20-minute episodes on their site. WATCH HERE

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