The Power of Grantee Feedback

Almost all grantmakers struggle with figuring out the most effective ways to gather feedback from their grantees. And for those that have mastered the data-gathering piece, understanding how to successfully take that feedback and make changes internally is an even steeper uphill battle.

More than 35 grants managers from around Florida came together online and in person on Thursday, April 17 for a webinar on this topic. The webinar was presented as a joint partnership between the Florida Chapter of the Grants Managers Network (GMN) and the Florida Philanthropic Network (FPN). Three presenters took the stage to explain best practices around gathering feedback and how the responses they have been able to gather through both formal and informal survey methods have had significant impacts on how they operate. Continue reading

Ending the Overhead Myth

In late January Dan Pallotta was the closing keynote speaker for Florida Philanthropic Network’s 2013 Statewide Summit on Philanthropy, and people in Florida philanthropy who heard him are still talking about his remarks to this day.

One of Pallotta’s key points Pallotta had to do with our country’s historic focus on a nonprofit’s “overhead” when making funding decisions. The word “overhead” has come to mean something bad or wrong, he pointed out, and “good” nonprofits are the ones who keep their overhead as low as possible. This way of thinking does not recognize that those overhead expenses also help to support a charity’s cause, Pallotta continued. It’s hard for a nonprofit to operate effective programs to fight hunger or homelessness, for example, if it can’t keep the lights on in its office or give its employees decent computers. Continue reading