I don’t like to brag, but I got so much for Christmas.  I just have to tell you about it!

I received the gift of inspiration and motivation from Nancy Lublin‘s book, Zilch.  She encourages readers to DO MORE.  I like Nancy’s advice because her recommendations are based on working smarter not working harder.  Here, I’ve highlighted my favorite suggestions from each chapter, focusing on critical areas for improvement at nonprofit organizations.

  1. “Do More with Less Cash to Throw at People” – Celebrate the Creativity and Energy of Young PeopleEngage and motivate your workforce in smarter ways, decreasing hard barriers!
  2. “Do More with Your Brand” – Be UniqueCraft a distinct, smart message, not one that is complicated and hard!
  3. “Do More with Your External People” – Remember that Word of Mouth is the Single Best Form of MarketingBe smart about empowering advocates to share your story; don’t make it hard!
  4. “Do More by Asking Smart” – Don’t Confuse Business and FriendshipManage your relationship smartly, don’t create hardships for others!
  5. “Do More for Customers” – Celebrate Local ElementsMaintain a smart focus on relevant area; geography doesn’t have to be hard!
  6. “Do More with Your Board” – Put Your Target Market on the BoardGather initial perspectives from smart people, and avoid the hard methods!
  7. “Do More with Your Staff” – Ensure that High Performers Rise to the Top and Low Performers ExitKeep the smart folks, and throw out the hard-to-work-with types!
  8. “Do More with Your Story” – Act FastSmart, quick progress is more effective than drawn-out, arduous processes!
  9. “Do More with Your Finances” – Think MultiyearDon’t work hard to reinvent the wheel each year; plan smart for the long-term.
  10. “Do More by Bartering with Zero” – Make it a Fair ExchangeCreate a smart proposal, making it hard to resist!
  11. “Do More with Innovation” – Outlaw the Words No and ButCultivate a smart culture of getting to yes; don’t make it hard to find solutions.

How else can nonprofits better leverage our “Zilch” status by working smarter not harder?  Leave a comment with a practice that you recommend!

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