Archive for March 12th, 2014

best of the best

I culled much of the following from an online paper and tweaked a bit to make it generic, but with all of the recent discussion about commissions, boards and committees, this is a rather succinct inventory of what I think makes up a great team. These are characteristics I look for in my appointments regardless of political affiliation. Better yet, these are the attributes we should all be looking for in candidates that run for office and set the course for our various forms of government.


need to have several of the following characteristics:

Creativity and Entrepreneurship.
The organization/ individual would show evidence of creative thinking and innovation development. They would have shown in their own work that they have the ability to nurture several projects from inception through design and implementation, and these projects should be ones that test the existing boundaries of the field in some important way. In other words, there must be a “track record” in implementing innovations.

Diverse Funding, With an Eye Toward Sustainability.
A successful organization is not dependent upon a limited number of funders, but rather has a more complex funding mix that comes from different sectors: federal, state, local, corporate and fee for service. Ideally, they do not act in a way that presumes that existing third-party resources will be around forever. For that reason, they have developed business plans that are designed to move segments of their organization toward self-sufficiency.

A successful organization has an impressive governing board giving them important connections to corporations, foundations, strategists, financial experts, entrepreneurs, and others that can open doors for future growth and impact.

Clear Direction.
A successful organization has a clear sense of where it is headed, and its “umbrella vision” is ambitious and broad-reaching.

Sense of Abundance.
A successful organization has a “sense of abundance” rather than a “scarcity mentality.” In other words, the organization is of the mind that innovation helps to create more resources for the field overall – and does not feel threatened by a potential innovation that it does not own.

Clear Commitment to the End User,
Rather Than Existing Institutions or Systems.
A leader / board member must show a commitment to changes that help the organization, with no vested interest in outside entities or relationships. This individual must show a high tolerance for disruption in the status quo, even if this means the end of certain institutions or ways of doing business. The individual should have a solid track record in helping institutions and systems serve the end users better.

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