Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Rector Collierville, TN Submit a Press Release Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Tags Presiding Bishop Michael Curry delivers the keynote address at the 50th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast in Boston, Massachusetts, on Jan. 20, 2020. Photo: Tracy Sukraw/Diocese of Massachusetts[Episcopal News Service – Boston] Presiding Bishop Michael Curry’s keynote address at the 50th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast on Jan. 20 was full of Scriptural interpretation, moral lessons and charismatic preaching reminiscent of King himself.Several times, however, he jokingly reminded the audience of around 1,500 that he had been asked to give a keynote address, not a sermon.“But imagine that it was a sermon,” he told the laughing audience before diving back into a reflection on the prophet Jeremiah.Curry’s fiery speech, which drew parallels between the political injustices of Jeremiah’s age and present-day America, was the highlight of the event that traditionally draws appearances from Boston’s most influential leaders. The breakfast was founded by St. Cyprian’s Episcopal Church – a largely African American parish in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood that features a stained-glass depiction of King – and Union United Methodist Church. The event’s proceeds benefit both churches’ community programs and services. This year, tickets for the breakfast – held at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center – were sold out for the first time in about 30 years, organizers said.The morning began with a prayer offered by Massachusetts Bishop Suffragan Gayle Harris.Massachusetts Bishop Suffragan Gayle Harris gives the opening prayer at the 50th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast in Boston on Jan. 20, 2020. Photo: Tracy Sukraw/Diocese of Massachusetts“We gather in what seems to be a weary year, with many silent tears from violence and war,” Harris said. “It seems at times the truth and our principles are under a guillotine of political expediency.”Harris encouraged the audience to draw strength from King’s wisdom and tenacity in dark times.“He reminded us that we cannot and must not remain in the valley of despair, hopelessness and helplessness,” she said.After a performance from a gospel choir that had the audience clapping and singing along, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, U.S. Sen. Ed Markey, U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh gathered on stage for a candid discussion about past and present manifestations of racial injustice in the state and the rest of the country. The consensus that emerged among the four politicians of different races and parties was that the specifics and semantics may be different now, but systemic racism persists, echoing the theme of this year’s event: “The Struggle Continues.”“One of the things that frustrates me when we talk about the civil rights movement is that we bookend it as if we’re not still in it. The same is true when we talk about abolition. I’m still an abolitionist because my people still are not free,” Pressley – who is black – said to cheers from the audience.“We can’t have a just society until we admit that we do not have a just society,” Markey said, calling for an end to private prisons and the mass incarceration of people of color. “And we have to have a conversation about reparation. … The truth is that in many ways, we have just substituted the cells of slave ships for the cells of prisons.”When Curry took the stage to deliver his speech, he applauded the elected officials’ willingness to speak frankly about such difficult topics.“It was wonderful to hear political leaders speak with a moral voice,” he said.The central motif of Curry’s keynote address came from Jeremiah 17:8: a sturdy tree that endures drought by spreading its roots toward a stream. He recalled a tree he saw during a pilgrimage to Ghana with the descendants of American slaves and slave owners – a massive tree that, he was told, had stood for centuries. A witness to years of mass enslavement and colonialism, the tree continued to thrive.“The tree, as large as it was above, was bigger below! It had a complex root system, a root system that spread out all over the land, a root system that was wide and inclusive,” Curry recalled enthusiastically. “If you want to navigate in moral ambiguity and complexity, when lies are substituted for truth, when misbehavior is exalted as just plain behavior, when people are treated like animals and put down, when mamas are separated from their children at the border of this country – you want to navigate that? You’ve got to be like that tree!”Although he only mentioned President Donald Trump by name once, Curry talked about the actions of kings in the time of Jeremiah and let the audience fill in the blanks.“Caring for those who have need was not their concern. In fact, they played political games on the level of geopolitics. They entered into unwise alliances. They canceled treaties that had long been in place. I’m just giving you a biblical lesson, now,” Curry said to laughter and applause. “They prepared to seal off the borders of Judah. Build imaginary walls. They segregated and separated people by their class and their caste. They separated folks, even in the house of God.”The solution, as it was for Jeremiah and for King, is “a revival of relationships and a revolution of values,” Curry told the audience.“In a country that was bereft of moral decency, a country that had lost its way, a country that abandoned its true roots … in times like that, you must be like the tree.”He ended with a nod to the slogan used by Trump and his supporters, bringing the crowd to its feet for a standing ovation.“When love is behind every law, America will be great!”– Egan Millard is an assistant editor and reporter for the Episcopal News Service. He can be reached at [email protected] Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Featured Events Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Youth Minister Lorton, VA Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Press Release Service Curate Diocese of Nebraska The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Rector Hopkinsville, KY Director of Music Morristown, NJ Rector Knoxville, TN Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Submit a Job Listing Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Featured Jobs & Calls Submit an Event Listing Associate Rector Columbus, GA Rector Belleville, IL Rector Shreveport, LA Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Rector Bath, NC By Egan MillardPosted Jan 20, 2020 Rector Martinsville, VA Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL Rector Tampa, FL TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Rector Pittsburgh, PA Rector Smithfield, NC Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Rector Washington, DC Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Rector Albany, NY Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Headlining 50th annual Martin Luther King breakfast, Presiding Bishop decries political injustice Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Racial Justice & Reconciliation Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem
NewsLocal NewsSigns of decrease in business in AnnacottyBy admin – May 29, 2012 788 Facebook Email Twitter WhatsApp Previous articleWhen a bring bank turned into a medieval castleNext articleMan burnt neighbour’s house after he kissed his wife admin Advertisement Linkedin Print A LACK of signage directing motorists to Annacotty has been blamed for a 50% decrease in business in the village, according to a local councillor. The road from Dublin to Limerick is “a disgrace and an insult,” according to Cllr Michael Sheahan who says that there are 22 signs directing passers by to villages in Clare, yet just two highlighting Annacotty or Castleconnell. The councillor has frequently raised the issue and bringing it up at a recent Castleconnell area meeting, claimed that “every other area of the county that has been bypassed is getting a push, bar Annacotty”.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up “If you miss the entrance to the ‘Mackey’ (Newport) roundabout, you are on the road to Cork and have no other opportunity to access the village,” he said.He also believes that the facilities depicted on the brown tourist information sign does not adequately represent the businesses on offer in the vicinity.He said the matter was raised in the Dail by Deputy Patrick O’Donovan, who asked that the traffic sign manual be revised.According to Cllr Sheahan, the response from Minister Leo Varadkar was that he was open to comment and engaging with local authorities on the matter of signage.In agreement that the village is not well sign-posted…Cllr Teefy said: “business people bring this up all the time” and Cllr Jackman observed:“You are over the bridge before you know you should have taken the exit.”“Annacotty is not an ordinary village, it has the Mulcair River and all the amenities that go along with it”.However, Senior Executive Engineer with the council, Finbarr Keyes believes that the signage policy for Annacotty is in line with the policy everywhere else in the county.“The brown signs are there simply to inform tourists that there are facilities in the area -if we change it for Annacotty we will have to do it for all the other villages at significant cost”.An assurance was given by Director of Services, Josephine Cotter Coughlan that policy in relation to signage will be reviewed.
(REUTERS)-Former tennis bad boy Ilie Nastase found himself in deep water on Saturday after being booted out of Romania’s Fed Cup tie against Britain, a day after allegations that he made a derogatory comment about Serena Williams’ unborn child.The 70-year-old former French Open and U.S. Open champion, who is captain of Romania’s Fed Cup team, was sent from his courtside chair after apparently aiming abuse at the umpire, British player Johanna Konta and visiting captain Anne Keothavong during the second singles rubber.World number seven Konta was in tears when play was briefly suspended at the tie in Constanta where she was up against Sorana Cirstea, apparently because of remarks made by Nastase.He was eventually excluded from the tie because of “unsportsmanlike conduct”.Konta recovered her composure to win the last five games for a 6-2 6-3 victory that levelled up the tie at 1-1 after Romania’s number one Simona Halep had beaten Heather Watson.“Mr Nastase was also removed from the grounds due to his serious misconduct,” the ITF said in a second statement.“His accreditation was removed and he will play no further part in the tie.“The ITF has launched an investigation into this matter as well as previous comments made by Mr Nastase during the week.”British captain Keothavong, who said she was made to feel “uncomfortable” by comments made by Nastase at the official pre-match dinner, said the abuse during play had been unacceptable.“We expected a patriotic crowd for the Romanian team but we don’t expect abusive language to be used … what he said directed to both Johanna and myself is… language that is not appropriate for anyone to speak to any other human.”ITF president David Haggerty said an investigation would be launched.“This is unacceptable behaviour by a Fed Cup captain. No player, official, member of the media or fan should have to endure any kind of abuse, and Mr Nastase will rightly play no further part in this tie,” he said.“A formal investigation is already underway and any decision or sanction will be made by the ITF’s Adjudication Panel. We are unable to comment further on an ongoing investigation.”Nastase, whose behaviour on court during his career often landed him trouble and earned him the nickname “Nasty”, began the tie under a cloud after remarks overheard at the official draw ceremony on Friday.He was heard speaking in Romanian to one of his team members about Williams’ baby.“Let’s see what colour it has. Chocolate with milk?” he was quoted by Romanian and some British media as saying.Williams, who confirmed her pregnancy through a spokeswoman on Wednesday, is engaged to Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, who is white.
South Africa opener Hashim Amla on Wednesday became the second fastest cricketer to complete 8000 runs in one-day international cricket in the ongoing World Cup 2019 match against New Zealand in Birmingham.Hashim Amla needed 24 runs before the start of the match to reach the landmark. He had the chance to become the joint-fastest to achieve the feat in South Africa’s last match against Afghanistan but he couldn’t do so as the Proteas were only chasing a paltry target of 126.Amla scored 41 not out in that game, which was his 175th innings for South Africa. Virat Kohli currently holds the record for the fastest to achieve the feat in 175 innings.Amla finally got to the landmark in the 12th over of the match against New Zealand. Amla is the fourth South African cricketer to complete 8000 runs in the format after Jacques Kallis, AB de Villiers and Herschelle Gibbs. Amla was eventually dismissed for 55 by Mitchell Santner in the 28th over with South Africa’s score reading 111 for 3 in 27.4 overs.8000 ODI runs for Hashim AmlaHe is the second fastest to the landmark in terms of innings battedCan he go on and celebrate with a big one today?#CWC19 pic.twitter.com/V1GvAkYrwZCricket World Cup (@cricketworldcup) June 19, 2019Amla is the fastest to complete 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000, 6000 and 7000 ODI runs. Amla had surpassed Kohli on the last three occasions when he entered the 5k, 6k and 7k clubs but missed out on his latest milestone.Kohli though, holds the record for being the fastest to 8000, 9000, 10000 and 11000 runs in the 50-over format. The Indian captain recently beat Sachin Tendulkar’s record when he entered the 11K club.advertisementDRINKS BREAK | GETTING RUNS, FASTThe Proteas very own @amlahash is in amongst some distinguished names in the game.#ProteaFire #CWC19 #NZvSA pic.twitter.com/Xbu1JUN8M3Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) June 19, 2019Kohli needed 57 runs before the start of India’s high-profile World Cup 2019 match against Pakistan at Old Trafford on Sunday to join an elite list.Sachin Tendulkar had reached the 11,000-run mark in ODIs against England on January 28, 2002 in Kanpur. He had taken 276 innings and 284 ODIs to get there while Virat Kohli brought up his 11,000th ODI run in only his 222nd innings and 230th ODI.While Tendulkar reached the milestone 12 years and 41 days after his debut in 1989, Kohli needed a little less than 11 years.
This seminar examines ways – when creating experiences, events or media designed to get our message across and raise funds – in which we can avoid distraction of the audience while delivering our message. In addition, we will lay out certain methods that can be applied to all forms of communication of any scope for agencies of any size or mission.The discussion will explore practical applications of:• Exploration of Assumption• Circumventing Preconception• Comfortable Disorientation• Successive Revelation, and• Subliminal EngagementAbout Our SpeakerKile Ozier has built messaging experience for over 25 years across myriad contexts; from theme parks to academic institutions and non-profit agencies. In academia, he has created campaigns totaling over $3 billion for such institutions as Stanford University, Harvard Law School, Johns Hopkins University and more. Founder of one of the most respected AIDS funding organizations in the US, San Francisco’s Academy of Friends, Ozier has been cited for the quality and efficacy of the experiences he creates by a disparate spectrum of clients, from the United States Navy to the Themed Entertainment Association. He is also a great cook.
Source: http://www.gettingattention.org/my_weblog/2007/01/make_your_messa.htmlAbout the AuthorNancy E. Schwartz helps nonprofits succeed through effective marketing and communications. As President of Nancy Schwartz & Company (http://www.nancyschwartz.com/), Nancy and her team provide marketing planning and implementation services to organizations as varied as the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Center for Asian American Media, and Wake County (NC) Health Services.Subscribe to her free e-newsletter “Getting Attention”, (http://www.nancyschwartz.com/getting_attention.html) and read her blog at http://www.gettingattention.org/ for more insights, ideas and great tips on attracting the attention your organization deserves.NOTE: You’re welcome to “reprint” this article online as long as it remains complete and unaltered (including the copyright and “about the author” info at the end), and you send a copy of your reprint. When I read Malcolm Gladwell’s The Tipping Point, I quickly became a convert. I learned to watch for, and value, stickiness. But it was harder to understand how to make my nonprofit client’s ideas and messages stick.Now, brothers Chip and Dan Heath, fill in the blanks with their guide, Made to Stick. For the Heaths, stickiness is all about “ensuring your ideas are understood and remembered, and have a lasting impact – they change your audience’s opinions or behavior“.Dan, a consultant at Duke, and his brother Chip, a professor at Stanford Business School, found that messages of all kinds — from the infamous “organ theft ring” hoax and a coach’s lessons on sportsmanship to a product vision statement from Sony — draw their power from the same six principles of stickiness:Simple — Hone in on the essence of your subject, stripping out the extra. Think core and compact, like a proverb.Unexpected — Break a pattern or routine to get attention. Use unexpected stories, language, channels. Highlight a gap in knowledge. Create mystery with a teaser.Concrete — Abstraction is hard to digest, and to retain. Explain your idea or message in concrete terms to help people understand (with less room for interpretation) and remember.Credible — Help audiences believe. Cite authorities, details and statistics.Emotional — Make people care. Appeal to self-interest. Introduce audiences to others they can relate to, link your messages to what they already care about and their aspirations. The Times Neediest Cases Fund excels here, crafting compelling profiles supported by photos to generate a great deal of empathy, interest and donations among Times readers. I’ve been reading those profiles since I was a kid, and giving every year.Story(telling) — A story brings ideas to life, placing them in a lifelike framework we can relate to, and remember. The Neediest Cases Fund excels at telling powerful stories. Stories are frequently unexpected, concrete, emotional and credible. The best ones are simple enough to be remembered and re-told.Download Made to Stick for Social Enterprise for a printable guide on these six sticky elements: Beware the Curse of Knowledge.Our knowledge is often a barrier to clear messages, because we can’t imagine (and sometimes don’t try) the perspective of someone who doesn’t know it. The more we know about a subject, the less we’re able to shape it into a message that will stick, but the Heaths offer strategies for defeating the Curse of Knowledge and other roadblocks to sticky success.Made to Stick is the rare business book that’s well-written and absolutely entertaining. And Chip and Dan walk the walk, building their book on a foundation of compelling anecdotes and stories. Made to Stick is a must read for anyone striving to craft messages that are memorable and lasting.
Last year, Sarah Bunting, who writes the blog Tomato Nation, a culture and humor blog, offered to shave her head if her blog readers donated to DonorsChoose.org, a site that allows donors to purchase school supplies for needy classrooms. Her readers responded, raising approximately $30,000 in a few days. Keeping her end of the bargain, she saved her hair off. And, if you don’t believe me, you can view the video on YouTube. Her efforts were chronicled in a recent Wall Street Journal article.On October 1, 2007, Sarah Bunting announced that it was time to do it again. (Not the head shaving, she has picked another type of humiliation.) She launched the month-long campaign with a goal of $40,000, again to support DonorsChoose.org. Just at the mid-way point, Ms. Bunting has raised $75,000! But she isn’t going to stop fundraising until the end of the month.Oh, the humiliation she selected? She will find a tomato costume and wear it all day.I don’t mean some wear-a-red-outfit-with-a-green-hat, only-go-outside-to-buy-milk bullshit either. I mean a big old spherical tomato-mascot rig, red tights, foam leaf hat, the whole bit – on the subway. To Rockefeller Center. Where I work, on the same floor as Saturday Night Live, 50 feet away from the president of Bravo. And then out for lunch, where I will pause to perform the post-kiss Angela dance from My So-Called Life in the plaza. And then back to work. And then out for a drink. And I will film it.The DonorsChoose.org Blogger Challenge is an initiative to help hundreds of thousands of public schools in need. DonorsChoose.org created a challenge platform which enables a blogger to select favorite classroom projects, set a fundraising goal, and customize the DonorsChoose.org page presenting his/her challenge. The challenger can then link to this page from his/her blog, call readers to action, and display an hourglass tracking progress toward the goal. More than a hundred bloggers have joined and the competition is heating up, but it’s not too late to create a challenge or to donate to another blogger’s challenge! The challenge will end at the end of October.Leaderboards show the generosity each blogger has inspired from readers. And, Sarah’s campaign is leaving the others in the dust! As of this evening, her campaign had raised over $80,000. The second place campaign is at $18,000 and being implemented by Fred Wilson. She’s also well ahead of TechCrunch which has raised slightly over $5,000. Hmm .. maybe they should issue similar challenges to their readers?Sarah blogged about this exclusively and acknowledged each gift. From my experience, you can’t simply put the widget on the side bar, announce your campaign, and go on as business as usual. You, the blogger, has to be passionate about your cause – and it leaks out from your blog into the hearts, minds, and checkbooks of your readers! It has to be authentic!Katya Andresen has noted that it works because: “The beauty of people-to-people fundraising is that it is based in two-way communication; it is a conversation between individuals rather than a speech from an organization. It puts your message in the mouth of the person most likely to prompt a donation: someone the audience knows. There are two useful social psychology theories at work here: liking and reciprocation.”From my experience doing several personal fundraising campaigns for Cambodian causes (see here, here, and here), I concur with Lucy Bernholz’s analysis of the model of charity blogging is something to keep an eye on:Regardless of what you think of the DonorsChoose model of giving, the fund development strategy here is worth looking at:The Bloggers Challenge shows how big and fast peer-to-peer fundraising (the oldest model we know) can grow with a push from the Internet;The media attention of something like this is worth it, even if the money is one-time gifts and none of the donors ever return to DC – which is pretty unlikely; DonorsChoose is doing very little to raise these funds – they’ve outsourced their fundraising to bloggers;Its new (I think). It takes the ChipIn/DonateNow/Widget/Facebook fundraisers and accelerates them.Source: http://beth.typepad.com/beths_blog/2007/10/make-sarah-bunt.html
Nonprofit organizations using Facebook can now launch a social networking-based fundraising drive for their cause, promote it to their friends and network, and raise money. That in a nutshell is what a new mini-application within Facebook, called Causes, is all about.Launched by Project Agape, this new service extends the “group” features and allows users to create causes, take donations, and recruit members. Why is this feature good for charities? According to Digital Journal.com:This is a good step for charitable foundations, and will be a defining move as more and more of these groups begin to pop up on Facebook. There are many worthy charities already on the site, so I see this feature taking a huge lead and pushing some action with the groups. The demographic of Facebook users is also younger, thus more likely to donate to charity.In my recent Beginners Guide to Facebook, I covered some of the ways that you can get started using Facebook. In this follow-up post, I’ll take you through five simple steps you can do today to promote your cause on Facebook.1. Create a new cause and choose to have it support your campaign.To create a new cause, click the Start Cause button from your Facebook profile page. Fill out the following five sections: basic information; category and tags; geography; picture; and choose a nonprofit organization that will benefit from your cause. When you’re done, you will be asked to add a contact email address and it will be featured in your profile as an ‘application widget.’2. Invite your friends and network to join and support your cause.Once you’ve created a new cause, you can either invite your friends to join or just wait for people to find your cause and join your group. Facebook’s “feed” feature will automatically notify your friends. You can also send messages to personally invite them to join your cause.3. Tell others about your cause with photos.Facebook’s Cause application only allows you to select one picture or logo to go with your cause. But you can upload pictures on a photo-sharing site such as Flickr or Smugmug and add a link to your page. (You’ll find some good information to help you get started with Smugmug on this blog post.)4. Use your cause to get media coverage.Public relations is one of the most important aspects of promoting nonprofit organizations. It works because you can get a lot of free publicity through it. So why not use your cause and the funds raised to write a press release about your achievements? You’ll probably need to have a lot of members signed up or a significant amount of money raised for the media to pay attention, but it’s worth it. One good example is the ONE campaign, which has raised $2,360 with 8,802 members.5. Involve your friends and supporters.Looking for ways to involve your members and supporters? After a donation has been made, a scorecard on your member’s profile page tracks how many people your members recruited and how much money they have raised.6. Promote awareness about your fundraising events.If you have a fundraising event coming up, create a new cause to promote awareness and raise funds for that event. Promote your new cause on your organization’s Web site, event Web site, other social networking sites that you are part of, and so on. Facebook is all about getting the word out. And the more causes, groups, and friends you add, the more visibility and awareness you will get for your organization.This article first appeared as a post on Wild Apricot’s Nonprofit Technology Blog, which covers social media tools and Web technologies geared toward the nonprofit realm.Copyright: Wild ApricotSource: http://www.techsoup.org/learningcenter/internet/page7416.cfm
Whether you’re building a Web site from scratch or simply revamping your existing site, it’s helpful to understand what to include, what to leave out, and how to organize the data you’re presenting. In this article, modified from a blog post on the AU Interactive blog, one technology strategist offers simple ways to think about your Web site.1. EASY is the most important feature of any Web site, Web application, or program. The web is about fulfilling needs. Create a site that lets people find what they need as easily as possible. This means prioritizing:Discoverability. Drive usage. Everything on your Web site should be easy to find; features should enhance content, not distract from it.Recoverability. Generate features that make it easy for others tell friends about your Web site or bookmark what they’ve found. Remove barriers to account signups. Encourage tagging. Make sure that these actions are readily available and free to the user.2. Visual design and copy are extremely important. How you communicate with visitors via text should complement how you communicate with your visitors visually. Remember: Your organization’s credibility is at stake with your Web site. Begin with the design, then the markup, then develop the back end. Remove distractions and simplify.3. Open up your data as much possible. The future is not in “owning” data, so share it with others. Expose every axis of your Web content for people to “mash up,” or reincorporate, into their Web sites.Offer an RSS feed for everything on your site. Use an application programming interface (API), which will allow requests to be handled automatically by computer program, although be sure to protect yourself from intentional or unintentional abuse (for example, a newbie programmer unwittingly making 100 server requests per second).4. Test, test, test. You can do your best to make educated guesses about what will work, but you will never know unless you create it and then test it. Create goals to be able to gauge and measure progress.5. Release features early and often. Always be aware of your end goals. Don’t offer “me too” features just to have them – stay true to your overall purpose. Small increments show visible progress: Start with a core set of features, then create plug-ins for additional functionality. Ideally, your development should be modular, incremental, and well-documented to mitigate future problems.Remember, too: If you stay personable and honest and set expectations, people will be a lot more receptive when things on your site break.6. Be special. Passion for what you are doing and creating is paramount. If you believe in it, do it. Don’t let anyone else tell you that it’s not possible or shouldn’t be done. Create purple cows. Challenge the status quo. Do it against the odds, and with little start up money. (Raising too much money can hurt you and make you lose focus.) Prove all your detractors wrong. Passion and a belief in yourself will get you through the rough times.7. Don’t be special. Don’t reinvent the wheel: Use common standards or open-source frameworks whenever possible. Also, try to share user databases, e-commerce systems, and other elements between your projects to prevent a “siloing” effect, whereby systems won’t interoperate.8. If you plan on developing a successful Web application, plan for scalability from the ground up. Anticipate growth and plan for problems ahead of time. Document everything. If you want a good real-world case study on scalability, check out Inside LiveJournal’s Backend (PDF). Find a top-notch hardware partner if you don’t want to deal with the nitty-gritty details yourself.9. Identify the tools you need. A few to watch, pay attention to, or implement right away:Microformats . This set of simple, open-data formats built upon existing and widely adopted standards will help open up your data easily and contextually.Adobe Apollo , a cross-OS runtime that allows developers to leverage their existing Web development skills (such as Flash, Flex, HTML, Ajax) to easily build and deploy desktop Rich Internet Applications (RIAs), Web applications that have the features and functionality of traditional desktop applications.Whobar , a tool that manages digital identity by allowing users to log in to a Web site using InfoCard, OpenID, or i-names.Akismet , which helps prevent comment and trackback spam.10. Keep abreast of user-generated content and social software trends. This is a bit of a catchall, but I’d like to list what has been working and not working regarding user-generated content.Not working:Requiring participation from everyone. Not all users need to participate to generate social value.Buying communities.Social networks for the sake of social networks.A Wikipedia-like consensus model, whereby many people contribute to a single idea for the greater good, is not a good model in general and probably cannot be duplicated outside of Wikipedia.Working:Giving users control; being open to different uses you did not anticipate.The Dunbar principle, which holds that there are a limited number of people with whom any one person can maintain stable relationships. Target segments of under 150 people.The Web site should provide value to the individual; the organization should derive aggregated value from all the individuals that use it.Social sites have and need different types of users; each should be motivated and rewarded equally.Many voices generate emergent order: You can get much value by tracking all of that user data.Copyright: AU InteractiveSource: http://www.techsoup.org/learningcenter/webbuilding/page6694.cfm
Celebrate outside-the-box thinking. Organize brainstorming meetings. Encourage employees to think outside the box to come up with unconventional solutions to problems or opportunities. Sometimes it’s best to eliminate authority figures from these meetings to allow a free flow of thoughts and a process that gives birth to fresh ideas.Have fun. Everyone knows what this means and what it looks like. In our company it’s practical jokes; it’s strange sounds on the intercom; it’s games and competitions; it’s going out to eat together or just sitting around shooting the breeze. You can see fun when you see laughter and the celebration of work.Publish your vision and mission. Do employees actually know what your vision and mission is? If not, it’s either because you don’t have them or you haven’t published them. Get them out there. Talk about them. Explain how you came up with them. Remember, THIS is why you are together.Create and publish your list of values. You have a set of values that you run the organization by. If it is not written down, then it’s informal. Write down the list. Include a focus on the people served, your donors, and fun. Publish it. Talk about it. Ask employees to hold you and others accountable to live by it.Bring a person your organization regularly serves into your environment. There is nothing like looking into the eyes of one of the people that has been helped by your organization. Bring them in, if possible, and sit them right down in the middle of the sacred halls. Have them interrupt the process of running the organization. Place them in a place (meeting) where everyone needs to focus on the real thing that is going on here. Talk to them about their journey. What was their life like before your organization helped them? How is it now? How do they feel? Get in touch with all of these. Don’t be afraid of it. Embrace it.Keep talking always about people served and donors. We mentioned it several times, but it is worth mentioning again. Remember, everything you do is about the people you serve and your donors. It is important to keep that focus.Get away from your desk and regularly talk to others about how excited you are about the people you serve and your donors. It is so easy to get wrapped up in the work and be stuck to your desk all day or in meetings. Plan to be absent from your desk. Put it on your calendar. Get out of your office and be with your staff for no reason but just to talk. Spread your joy. Share a story of how a person the organization helped really touched you. Talk about a donor and how encouraged you are about their help.Get emotional about things. This isn’t just about plans, charts, grids, logic and the mind. It is about people. Allow your heart to be broken by the tragedies of life. Celebrate the victories. Get excited. Jump up and down. Be human. When your employees sense that you do have blood running through those veins; that you can cry and laugh; that you are real when they sense that, you will be on your way to getting passion back into the workplace.These are just some of the ideas we have on getting passion back into the workplace. Share your ideas with us. We’d like to hear them. And if you give us permission, we’d like to publish them. Talk back.Source: Merkle Orange Papershttp://www.merkledomain.com/site/PageServer?pagename=orange_passionCopyright © 2007 Merkle Inc.All rights reserved Take steps to fall back in love with donors. They are the true stakeholders in your organization. The board isn’t. The president isn’t. Even you aren’t. It is the donor who truly owns the charity. Why not start behaving that way? Here are some things you can do to remind yourself (and everyone else) that, after the person who is helped by your charity, the next most important person is the donor:Regularly (once a week) read donor letters to employees or pass excerpts along via e-mail. Focus especially on donor letters that express gratitude for being able to serve.Have a donor come in and address employees in a company or department meeting. Ask them why they are involved and why they stay involved.Encourage employees to call or visit with donors to talk about their motivations for being involved. You come to work lifeless. Everyone around you has that look in their eyes: a glaze that signals boredom, purposelessness, fatalism.“What am I doing here?” you ask. Good question. What are you doing? If you are a leader or manager and you see this zombie-like state among your organization’s employees, there is something you can and should do about it.What are the key indicators that an organization has lost its passion, and how do you counteract it?Key Signs That Your Organization Lacks PassionThe leader is really not excited about what the organization does. In fact, many employees aren’t either. They are there more for the paycheck than the cause.There is no clear mission or purpose.No one talks or cares about who ultimately benefits from what the organization does.Managers and leaders are more focused on process than they are on doing good work.There is no overarching vision for the organization.There is a noticeable absence of flexibility. Everything is very regimented and very predictable. Outside-the-box thinking is discouraged.There is a lack of culture and personality; fun is not promoted.There is a lot of turf protection and lack of cooperation between individuals and departments.10 Steps To Re-infusing Passion Into Your OrganizationTake steps to fall back in love with those who are helped by your organization. Who are they? How is your organization helping to change their lives? How can you help more? Here are some ways to inspire the people in your organization to move the focus from themselves back to the people you are organized to serve:Once a week, share a story with your staff about a dilemma faced by a person served by your organization. This will most likely be a dilemma that has not yet been resolved. The purpose of this exercise is to keep employees focused on why your organization exists.Once a week, share a success story about someone who has been helped by your organization. This will cement in your employees’ minds that what you are doing is really working.In your monthly company meeting, have an employee speak about the vision and mission of your organization and what it means on a personal level to him or her. This will remind your employees that what you are doing is important.Do everything possible to give the people helped by your organization prominence. Hang pictures of them in the halls. Talk about them. Ask, “How does my job serve the people we are helping?” Remember, it is about them. Nothing else matters very much.