Leap of Reason Updates Archive

29
Oct
2012

New Models are Overrated

You probably didn’t expect to get an email from me with a title like this, given my penchant for breaking the mold. But I’ve become increasingly frustrated with the many conversations in our sector that celebrate wonderful new models or reforms but ignore what it really takes to bring new ideas to fruition: the talent, …

27
Sep
2012

One Small Step, One Giant Leap

On September 20, this aging Italian took a small step (through an intimidating Secret Service security gauntlet) to join a distinguished group of social sector leaders at theWhite House Forum on Philanthropy Innovation. I shared an idea that, if brought to fruition, could represent a giant leap forward for our sector. I challenged all the …

31
Aug
2012

Leaping Forward this Fall

As families like ours buy school supplies, find out class assignments, and transition back to the barely controlled chaos of the academic year, we are also gearing up for a busy fall of sharing the Leap of Reason message with public and private sector leaders around the country. Our efforts to spread the Leap gospel …

31
Jul
2012

The ’Show-Me’ State of Mind

This month, I want to start off with some optimism rather than being that guy with the fire hose dousing the campfire. In my most recent column, “Why We Need a Mass ’Missouri’ Movement,” I reference the famous 1899 quotation by Rep. Duncan Vandiver that gave Missouri its state slogan: “Frothy eloquence neither convinces nor …

27
Jun
2012

Momentum for Merit

This month I will lead off by thanking the Communications Factory, in Hiram, OH, for doing a great job of condensing my address to the City Club of Cleveland into a quick-hitter five-minute video. We realize that a YouTube video of a pontificating funder can’t possibly compete with skateboarding dogs and sneezing pandas. But we …

24
May
2012

The Unlikely Proliferation of ’Radioactive Broccoli’

A year ago this week, we at Venture Philanthropy Partners (VPP) launched Leap of Reason. We cautiously hoped that a few thousand leaders would find our little chartreuse book (one colleague quipped that it’s the color of “radioactive broccoli”) to be of practical value for their work. A year later, the physical or digital book …

27
Apr
2012

Relentless

Our subject line reflects the title of the passionate and personal speech Mario just finished giving at The City Club of Cleveland, based heavily on his work with Venture Philanthropy Partners. He’s handling Q&A right now, so we appropriated his email account to send out this message. We’re biased of course, but we think the …

23
Apr
2012

If you want to hear a fast-talking Italian

I gave a speech at the City Club of Cleveland (my hometown) at 12:30 EDT on Friday, April 27. You can watch the rebroadcast of the speech as well as read the prepared remarks. The speech seeks to lift up the Leap of Reason message—from one about outcomes assessment and performance management to one that …

30
Mar
2012

Which Comes First: Leadership or Money?

I’ve got a classic chicken-or-egg challenge for you. For an organization to make “the leap of reason,” which comes first: courageous nonprofit leadership or courageous, results-driven funding? In my column this month in VPPNews—and in a speech I will deliver next month at the Cleveland City Club (we’ll send a link to the webcast when …

29
Feb
2012

Happy Leap Day!

Recently a colleague was eating at a Smith & Wollensky’s steak house and saw a giant banner apprising diners that 2012 is “The Year of the Steak.” If Smith & Wollensky’s can unilaterally appropriate a whole year to market a product that my doc has all but banned from my diet, then there’s no reason …

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