Monday, November 23, 2009

Karen’s Tips: Ending the Year On An Up Note

1. Capture at least one story that happened this year- of someone you served, a life you changed and a donor who made a difference.

2. Apply for any one-time per year grants.

3. Prepare and send thank-you notes, holiday notes and an end of the year appeal.

4. Create an overall big picture plan for next year.

5. Set your vacations in your calendar for the upcoming year.

6. Develop your top dozen strategy questions for the next year. What issues do you need to think about with your board?

7. Help your board to reflect on the past year and set both progress (what we will achieve) and process (how we will achieve it) goals.

8. Establish new learning goals. Help everyone-- your board, staff, volunteers and yourself to identify three areas where they want to learn more in the next twelve months. While classes and workshops are great, don’t overlook low cost print and Internet materials, like books and articles.

8. Start on any project you resolved to begin this year.

9. Set your goals for the next year, both personally and for your organization.

10. Adopt at least one new efficiency standard. For instance, our standard meetings will be one hour or less. Or, to keep focused on our major objectives, staff will write bi-monthly reports in fifteen minutes to be read in five minutes.

11. As funds allow, order standard supplies, so that you are ready for a fast-start after the holiday break.

12. Check with your accountant, printer, webmaster and insurance agent, etc. What improvements should you consider? What if anything will save you money, make you more effective and enhance your brand or your competitiveness?

13. Take time to review your many achievements during the year. Share this list, with those who helped you achieve them, with thanks.

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