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Alicia Blain

Entries tagged with “Nancy Lublin”.


One of the things I enjoy most is highlighting stories of Gen Yers that are making an impact by doing things differently. In my January blog titled “How Gen Yers are Reinventing the Future” I was highlighting a speech given by Rachel Botsman at  TEDx Australia.  She gave a fascinating talk about collaborative consumption and you can read about it in  my January 24th blog.  A few days after I posted the blog, I received a comment from Jonah Halper letting me know about another talk from Nancy Lublin that I would probably find interesting.  As it turns out, I’m a big Nancy Lublin fan so I went to visit the site to see her talk.

When I got there I was more curious about the site itself than Nancy’s talk (it’ll be our secret..).  As it turns out the name of the site is “NextGen:Charity.com” and what a great concept they have.  The description on the site explains what they do better than I can so here is what it says, “NextGen:Charity is a conference on non-profit innovation aimed to help you run your organization more effectively and efficiently, and connect with donors and your community more powerfully”.  The Gen Y founders,  Jonah Halper (my blog commenter), a professional fund raiser and marketer and Ari Telman, an award winning comedian & founder of JCORPS, an international volunteer organization, joined forces & started NextGen:Charity.

Here’s the beauty of their idea.  They saw the power & following that the TED talks generated & wanted to bring that to the non-profit sector, which as I can attest, needs it desperately. Visit their site & see the sponsor lineup supporting them: Fast Company, AMEX, Pace University.  Not too shabby, huh?  Then there are the speakers:  Seth Godin, our friend Nancy Lublin, and many more top name experts in the non-profit world.

The NextGen:Charity conference event  takes place in NYC on November 17&18 but the founders have Meetups scheduled all across the country from now until the summer.   Cool idea and worth attending if you’re in one of the cities: DC,Boston, Miami, LA & Chicago.

For all  my non-profit friends & clients, check out the NextGen:Charity and block those dates.

NextGen:Charity is just another example of Gen Y’s creativity at work.  It also showcases their innate desire for collaboration and helping others/giving back.  So next time you think Gen Yers are lazy & unmotivated, think of Jonah & Ari & think again.

Oh and BTW, I did get to see Nancy Lublin’s video & it was very good — I knew it would be.  :-)

Did you know that in Britain, this week is called National Thank You Week?  Well it’s true and I had no idea.  That’s why I love Nancy Lublin’s  “Do Something” column in Fast Company.  There’s always some tidbit that I learn. In November her column was titled  “Two Little Words“.  In it she reminds us how we so often forget to say thank you.  As we celebrate Thanksgiving in the US and the British  have National Thank You week,  I wonder how many times this week we will stop to say thank you or be thankful for all we have?

We are often so quick to see the shortcomings in others and to see our life as half empty that it really keeps us from seeing all the abundance we have around us whether it’s in the people we work with or in the life we have.  As leaders we often forget how important those in the trenches are to our success.  Without them, we couldn’t do what we do.  Yet, how many times have you taken  a few minutes to talk to them or ask them how they’re doing.  Many times, we justify not doing it by saying that these folks report into our direct reports and that our direct reports are taking care of that?  My response to that is:  So?  Even though that is the case, there’s no reason why, you as the head of your team, can’t do the same.  Imagine what a treat that would be to those staff members?

Nancy Lublin talks about thanking the “little people” which she defines as the FedEx guy, the people that clean your offices, the mailroom people.  It’s the people that are almost invisible to you on a day to day but whose absence you would feel given the things they do for you.  Everyone we interact with contributes in some small way to our getting through our day everyday and yet we often don’t give them a second thought.

Well, let’s give them a second thought today.  As we get ready to spend tomorrow with our friends & family, let’s not forget that Thanksgiving ISN’T just about turkey & football but in fact, it’s a day to spend quality time with our family.  It’s a day not only to enjoy our friends & family but to be thankful we have them, warts and all.  But that’s tomorrow.  Today, make time to say thank you to your corporate family, especially those in the trenches and the invisible people who do so much & allow us to concentrate on what we do best.

Like Nancy says, it’s just 2 words but they carry such a powerful, positive punch when it’s heartfelt.

So from me to you, I want to thank you all and wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving !

When I run across an article that actually celebrates rather than criticizes Millennials, I get excited and I have to share it with everyone.  In October’s Fast Company edition, Nancy Lublin wrote a great article titled “Why Bashing Millennials is Wrong“.  She touches on a lot of the points that I have blogged about over the last few months.  Like me, Nancy works directly with many Millennials and has been able to see firsthand the great qualities they bring to the workplace.  She gives some great examples of  her Millennial staff members and the creativity they bring to the workplace. 

They are optimistic and  have bold dreams. Like Nancy says ,every company should want to hire employees that are hungry to make a difference.  There are 2 things I liked best about the article.  Nancy reminds us that providing feedback to our employees has always been important but  more so now than ever before.  I think leaders miss out on great opportunities to leverage praise as a wonderful management tool to inspire and uplift their staff.  

As a corporate observer, I find that for the most part, leaders can be cheap with praise and generous with criticism. Because we are so busy putting out fires and dealing with our daily challenges, we often forget to showcase a job well done by a team member.  But think about what a morale booster that would be if we went out of our way everyday to compliment someone for the good work they did.  It doesn’t have to be a big win.  Celebrating small victories are often more effective and are remembered more than the big ones.  It’s such a simple, easy thing to do but we let other things get in the way of our ability to praise.  When was the last time you praised an employee for something they did well? 

The second thing I liked best about Nancy’s article is that she ends it by reminding us that the clash of the generations is timeless. We just forget because as time passes we are on the other side of the clash.  As Baby Boomers and Xers,  we often forget that we felt the same frustration when we started our corporate careers as the Millennials do now.  But being on the other side and remembering what it was like when we started our careers gives us a huge advantage.  It allows us the opportunity to not make the same mistakes as leaders in the past.  Instead of criticizing the “new” generation and trying to make them conform to the traditional corporate structures and principles, why not as Nancy says “manage them for greatness, for maximum effect”? 

This article reminds us that we are not as different as we think we are; we APPLY things in ways that seem unfamiliar.  Our role as leaders is to build that bridge to the unfamiliar.  The first step is to see the possibilities in our staff instead of the deficiencies and to celebrate them.

What about you?  Do you celebrate the small vicitories of your team?