Developing Nonprofit Leaders

A conversation with Mary Hiland on the "Inspired Nonprofit Leadership" podcast

I’m delighted to be Mary Hiland’s guest on episode #23 of her podcast, Inspired Nonprofit Leadership.

Inspire Nonprofit Leadership Podcast episode 23

Our topic is nonprofit leadership development. Here are the points that we cover:

  • The three big myths about leadership development.
  • The 70-20-10 model of learning and development and how you can use it.
  • “Owning” your career versus “renting it,” and the importance of having a developmental mindset.
  • How emerging leaders don’t need to wait around for the organization to develop them.
  • How to use stretch assignments and rounding out experiences.
  • The two “Ps” of talent development.
  • Moving in, moving up and moving on – managing career turns.
  • Every job involves a social contract and the contract’s four elements.
  • The five core competencies of nonprofit CEOs.

We managed to pack a lot into just 34 minutes! I hope you’ll have a listen.

Available on the Inspired Nonprofit Leadership podcast page, or on Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcast app.

Review – Joan Garry’s Guide to Nonprofit Leadership

When was the last time you read a book on nonprofit leadership – or a book on leadership of any kind, for that matter – that made you laugh out loud, tugged your heartstrings, and compelled you to keep reading? Maybe never, right? That’s about to change if you pick up a copy of Joan Garry’s Guide to Nonprofit Leadership (Because Nonprofits Are Messy).

Joan Garry's Guide to Nonprofit LeadershipYou’ll be treated to over 200 pages of wisdom, wittily written. Here are my chapter-by-chapter takeaways:

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Developing Leaders, Developing Successors

Interview with Allison Bogdanović Executive Director, Virginia Supportive Housing

There are two pervasive myths – false assumptions – that are holding back the development of leaders in the nonprofit sector.

The first myth is that leader development is too complicated and too expensive, which makes it the exclusive domain of the “big guys.” In other words, it’s for those mythic “other” nonprofits. You know, the ones with unlimited resources, lots of staff and plenty of time to do things… Just, not us.

The second myth is that organizations develop leaders. Behind this myth is the idea that leader development is something that the organization provides or does to its people. Unfortunately, this myth is causing many people to postpone leadership development actions that they could be taking today because they’ve bought into the false belief that it’s up to their organization to provide some sort of program or send them to a course that will magically turn them into a leader.

This case study interview dispels both of those myths. We will be talking with Allison Bogdanovic, who is executive director of Virginia Supportive Housing (virginiasupportivehousing.org) in Richmond, Virginia.

Allison was an internal candidate who was promoted to the CEO position in 2013 after a competitive search process that involved internal and external candidates. Allison shares her experience of developing as an emerging leader, her perspective on the hiring process, and the realities of transitioning from a senior leader into the CEO role. 

Whether you’re a CEO or senior manager who wants to do a better job of developing leaders in your nonprofit, or you are a nonprofit staff member who wants to move up the career ladder, Allison shares wisdom and insights that can help you.

Many thanks to Allison and the folks at Virginia Supportive Housing for sharing their experience with us. To learn more about Virginia Supportive Housing, please visit virginiasupportivehousing.org.

Below is a guide to the topics covered in this case study.

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