April 2010

Challenge: Use Good Business Practices Without Losing Social Purpose

As the saying goes, "assume" makes an ass of you and me.

In a recent "debate" posted on the McKinsey & Company website, I think some asinine assumptions were made by both sides.

10 Tips for Sourcing Ethical Suppliers in Developing Countries

You want to be socially responsible, to buy from suppliers who treat their workers well and provide quality products. Very nice. But the practice is more complicated than the vision.

According to a study by the Chinese government and reported by Asia Inspections, nearly 80% of private Chinese firms violate employee rights and have not signed contracts with their employees.

5 Ways Local Network Helps Small Businesses Attract Customers, Financing, and Government Support

Locally owned businesses in Santa Fe, NM, formed the Santa Fe Alliance to help the local economy. That was in 2003. Now, the Alliance has grown to be a major advocacy, education, and financial resource for locally owned business. Its growth and its effectiveness exemplify the power of networks for small businesses. 

Here's What Small Business Leaders Can Learn From Big Businesses About Going Green

"We're still here." So begins the State of Green Business Report from GreenBiz.com. The big news according to the report, is that green businesses were not the first to go during the Great Downturn.

Bottom Billion is Major Market for Entrepreneurs Who Get It

If you wanted to design a product for the Indian market, where would you begin? Do you even know what products are needed? Do you know how to give your product value in the multi-faceted culture of the sub-continent? Do you know how much of that market has electricity, running water, or other infrastructure that might be needed in order to use your product?

Take a Break! Leaders Benefit From Sabbaticals

So you think you're indispensable. Think again.

A new study by CompassPoint Nonprofit Services shows that non profits and their leaders benefit if the top dog takes time off. The study, Creative Disruptions surveyed the nonprofit leaders who had taken time off, the staff members who replaced them temporarily, and the funders who made it all possible.

There's Green Out There, Both Money To Be Had and Environmentally Friendly Technologies: Go Get It!

It bears repeating: New York state, city, and county really want businesses to "go green." And they're putting their money where their mouth is. All levels of government, and some utilities, are offering big incentives if businesses implement energy-saving technology.

Going Green Incentives Can Minimize Cost of Rehabs, Upgrades

A "new" form of accounting can help nonprofits, small businesses, and the environment. No, I'm not talking about cookin' the books. I'm talking about getting all the breaks you are eligible for when "going green."

"It's not all new age theory; there are real, true bottom-line benefits to going green in whatever shape or form you can manage," says Susan Lanfray, marketing director at ERE Accountants and Advisors.

Nonprofit Leaders Take Note: Salaries May Rise Next Year

Surprise! Despite the challenges facing nonprofits in 2009 – and predicted for 2010 – salaries for nonprofit leaders held steady and, in some cases, increased.