Category Archives: Administration

‘Green IT for Sustainable Business Practice’ — A Valuable Perspective on Green IT

UK-based author Mark O’Neill’s new book “Green IT for Sustatiainable Business Practice” is the essential guide to greening for any nonprofit, library, or really small to medium sized office.

Described by Amazon as a “sensible, clear-sighted guide to emerging standards, rules, business processes and best practices in a complex and ever-changing sector,” “Green IT for Sustainable Business Practice” is one of the few books that focuses on the expanding concern for greener technology. It is such an important topic when one considers that “the electricity consumption of PCs is growing by five percent year on year” O’Neill states.  “In an average small to medium sized enterprise electricity consumption accounts for ten percent of an IT department’s budget.”

O’Neill’s dissection of green business is based mainly on the bigger picture; world-wide developments in global warming. It offers practical suggestions to reduce your company’s carbon footprint. Replace older PCs with energy efficient EPEAT gold-rated PCs and replace CRT computer monitors with more efficient LCD models.

Some of the more obvious practices for any business that O’Neill advocates is the proper recycling of computers and the donation of electronic devices to schools or charitable organizations through third parties, like Computer Aid International.

Moreover, O’Neill’s book covers more general practices to running a sustainable business. He touches upon the subject of virtualization; cloud computing and software as a service — like those run by Google. He also breaks down how to work independent of location, through remote access solutions such as webcams, instant messaging voice-conferenceing and Internet video calling.

For any business looking to better understand emergent technological practices, for green business this book will be a valuable tool. If anything O’Neill offers a unique, non-U.S perspective for business leaders committed to greening their enterprise.

11 Reasons Why New College Grads Should Pursue Nonprofit Careers

Rosetta Thurman is a writer, speaker, professor and consultant working and living in the Washington, D.C. area.  She holds a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Management and blogs about nonprofits, leadership and social change at rosettathurman.com

All over the country, a couple million young people are graduating from college, including my little sister, Joelle! This weekend, she graduated from Howard University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. I’m so proud of her, I can hardly stand it. It’s been an amazing celebration weekend with all of our family in town from Ohio, Georgia and Virginia. But after all the partying and congrats we did as a family, our first question to Joelle was, “So when are you gonna get a job?” She’s in the market looking for her first “real” job right now just like everyone else her age. Fortunately, her career field of nursing provides a very clear avenue for what to do next after school. After you graduate with a BSN, you take your certification test, then you go to work at a hospital or clinic. Even better is that in Washington, DC, the starting salary for nurses comes out to about $27 an hour. So new nurses have a pretty linear career path and a good chance that they will earn a good salary.

But what about those that don’t?

What about young people like me who came out of college with a degree in English and no idea what to do with it? Those new grads should definitely consider the nonprofit sector as a career choice for a number of reasons.

Read the rest of the article at Stanford Social Innovation.

6 Ways to Green Your Technology

Earth day connotates green pastures and blue skies, happily taking in natures’ bounties. But seriously, when can we  get away from our PDA’s or stale office air?

This isn’t supposed to be a nihilist viewpoint for the future, more a realistic blend of everyday life with a greener version. Since most of us will be spending our Earth Day surrounded by 2.0 tech, why not make that as green as you can.

Here are just a few of the ways you can green your IT, or use IT to green your organization this Earth Day:

  • Print Green. Did you know that the age of the Internet has actually increased our paper consumption? (Not to mention all those toner cartridges.) Set the computers in your office to print double-sided — and set them on draft quality to cut down on the paper and toner you go through. Bonus: it will save you money too!
  • Recycle your old equipment. Take laptops, old boxes of toner, thumb drives, broken keyboards, or old power supplies to places in like Free Geek. Not only will they put the used tech to good use, they’ll give people great work skills while they do it. There are programs like Free Geek all over the country and a myriad of other options for recycling your tech junk, even at retailers like Office Depot and Best Buy.
  • Join the Green IT Consortium on LinkedIn. They have great and useful discussions to help you follow through on your Earth Day resolve every day of the year.
  • Two words: Smart Strip.
  • Skip The Commute. With web-based software, web conferencing, laptops, and smart phones, it’s easier than ever to skip the office entirely. Managing a remote workforce can be challenging, but letting your staff skip the commute, even just a couple of days a week, is a great benefit for them, and for the Earth.
  • Buy green electronics. Greenpeace has a handy guide to help you choose electronics from the most environmentally-friendly companies.

Guidestar Launches A Nonprofit Rating Platform

By Heidi Genrich

Guidestar, the mega-database of nonprofits and their Form 990s, has launched a site that gathers and organizes nonprofit reviews from GiveWell, GreatNonprofits, Philanthropedia and Root Cause. Most of Guidestar’s parnter sites are all charity evaluators that survey charity experts, though GreatNonprofits utilizes user-submitted reviews. Up until this point, Guidstar has only been primarily useful to those who need know more about a specific nonprofit, but their new platform, , is aimed at directing users to quality nonprofits within various cause categories.

This development is also interesting in light of the joint  press release put out by GuideStarCharity NavigatorGiveWellPhilanthropediaGreatNonprofits and Philanthropy Action last year that condemned the use of overhead ratios (i.e. how much was spent on programs vs. administration vs. fundraising) and finances to rate and compare nonprofit organizations. There has been a positive shift in the community towards prioritizing the nonprofit’s social impact when judging their programs and operations.

CEO Pay: Should Expensive Executives Get Out Of Nonprofit?

By Heidi Genrich

In her article Nonprofit CEOs Who Want For-Profit Salaries Should Work at For-Profit Companies, Rosetta Thurman argues that there is an important difference between high pay and excessive pay, challenging the growing consensus that nonprofits should pay executive salaries competitive with their for-profit counterparts. Thurman divides her argument into several important points, but most compellingly she point out that focus on executive pay forgets the other important part of a nonprofit organization: everyone else who works in a nonprofit organization.

Now if we defended increasing the salaries of other nonprofit staff members as much as we do for CEO’s, the sector would be in much better shape. I know that while many CEO’s get paid extremely well, their staff members still make pennies on the dollar. No matter how great they are, no successful nonprofit CEO raises millions singlehandedly.

Nonprofit professionals, the people who do the grunt work of raising money and implementing programs, are infamously underpaid. It is also a little hard to swallow seven figure executive salaries while nonprofits cut back on services. Check out Rosetta Thurman’s full article from The Chronicle Of Philanthropy and let us know what you think!

Authenticity in Corporate Social Responsibility

Posted on 2/18/10 by Geoff Livingston

Social media continues to impact businesses and nonprofits in unforeseen ways. Perhaps the greatest trend of the moment is the fusion of corporate and philanthropic interests, which in turn is producing growing pains and change. It’s likely that the requirements of online transparency will demand a new era of authenticity in corporate community investment efforts.

This trend results from demands for better corporate citizenship and community participation, transparency digressions, and frankly, very public cause marketing and corporate social responsibility programs that have exposed weaknesses in the social media realms.

It’s a problem that keeps coming up, and won’t go away. This will force organizations and companies to become much more mindful about how they invest in their communities.

Read the rest at GeoffLivingston.com

Are Charities Becoming Obsolete?

Posted 2/15/10 by Marcia Stepanek on Cause Global

People have been asking for a while now whether there are too many charities—either too many focused on accomplishing the same things, or too few able to prove social impact.

But now, as the nonprofit charity sector enters its third year of steep declines in donor dollars, a new question is dominating the conversation: are traditional, middleman charities—whose purpose has been to raise money for various causes and spend it as their boards see fit—becoming obsolete?

To be sure, Establishment charities aren’t just struggling for new dollars in this recession. They’re also scrambling to regain credibility amid years of chronic waste, fraud and abuse dogging the sector. Traditional charities also are being pushed hard, to reinvent themselves amid new competition from Web-spurred advocacy networks and the rise of new “sector-agnostic” mass activism initiatives, including new social enterprises. For some time now, philanthropy thought leaders have predicted that unless traditional charities fundamentally reinvent themselves as aggregators and issues experts—and retool their funding models—they could die trying.

Read the rest on Cause Global.