Take a Break for the good of your nonprofit
It sounds a bit counter-intuitive, but could taking a break really help your nonprofit? I was recently listening to Ali Brown, the Entrepreneur Coach, about being a successful entrepreneur. She spoke about different people’s practices of either ‘thinking or doing’. Ali states that people typically function in 1 of 2 ways.
- Spend a lot of time thinking about what they would like to do, but do not take action on their thoughts.
- Spend a lot of time doing and working and do not take a break to think or to be strategic about their goals.
She believes that it is important to do both. I completely agree! Callen Rush gives a nice example of the importance of this by giving the analogy of digging a ditch. She states that if you want to dig a nice deep and straight ditch, you have to do two things.
- You have to get in there and dig it.
- You have to take time to get out and determine if you are moving in a straight line.
Callen speaks about the importance of ‘doing and thinking’. In this example, you have to do the work to dig and you also have to take the time to assess if you are meeting your goal of digging a straight ditch. If not, it could be a very crooked ditch!
I find that it is important to also add ‘learn’ to this principle. I believe that it is critical to learn from multiple sources so that when you think, or are strategic, and then take the time to do the work, you are taking educated steps rather than guesses, hopes and dreams.
I recommend that nonprofit leaders, staff and volunteers take a break to ‘think’ about what is working well, what is not working and where you want to go. Is your nonprofit meeting the required outcomes that will help it reach the organization’s vision? Also, take as much time as possible to learn. You can learn from books, the internet, the library, friends and other nonprofit leaders. Go for a coffee! Enjoy it and learn what works for others.
I am about to take my break! I will be away from the office for the next two weeks and will not be blogging. I look forward to speaking with you the week of July 29th, 2013. Have a great two weeks and remember to not only act, but to also think and learn.
Photo credit to: Microsoft Office Clip Art