Tuesday, March 4, 2014

'Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.'—Leo Tolstoy

By Steven Worth

This famous quote touches a sensitive spot, doesn't it?  Whether it is about organizations or individuals, we all seek to change the world in one manner or another but in my experience few actually are ready to change themselves.

The nonprofit world is full of would-be world changers, but this recent article in the Wall Street Journal should give us pause.
"Clueless at the Corcoran: What the museum's latest bad decision says about nonprofit governance"


This article appears on the heals of a series of articles written earlier this year by the Washington Post in which it was pointed out that the nonprofit sector is second only to the financial sector in the prevalence of fraud.

How can anyone in the nonprofit sector profess any lofty aspiration of any kind if we are not ready to scrutinize our own governance and management practices to ensure efficiency and effectiveness?  Greed and fraud in the nonprofit sector are easy to condemn in others; but don't we realize that we are all tarred with that same brush?--that we set the stage for this abuse through the examples we set in our own governance and management practices?

I am going to be giving the keynote address at the AFG annual conference in Washington, DC on the morning of 8 May and I will be touching on this topic.  If you care about this issue, I would welcome your presence.

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