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To give away money is an easy matter and in any man’s power. But to decide to whom to give it and how large and when, and for what purpose and how, is neither in every man’s power nor an easy matter.
Even the smallest person in the world can change the course of the universe.
JRR Tolkien (Lord of the Rings)
Difficult things we do quickly. The impossible takes a little longer.
I’ve always respected those who tried to change the world for the better, rather than just complain about it.
I resolved to stop accumulating and begin the infinitely more serious and difficult task of wise distribution.
Wealth is not to feed our egos, but to feed the hungry and to help people help themselves.
We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.
The value of a man resides in what he gives and not in what he is capable of receiving.
It is every man’s obligation to put back into the world at least the equivalent of what he takes out of it.
How wonderful it is that nobody needs to wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.
I would rather have it said, ‘He lived usefully,’ than, ‘He died rich.’
If you want to change the world, be that change.
Helping people doesn’t have to be an unsound financial strategy.
Life is a loan that we must return one day, and it is not interest free. The interest we pay is to make the world a little better than when we entered.
If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.
John F. Kennedy
Every man must decide whether he will walk in the creative light of altruism or the darkness of destructive selfishness. This is the judgement. Life’s persistent and most urgent question is “What are you doing for others?”
Martin Luther King Jr.
Philanthropy is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Think of giving not only as a duty but as a privilege.
John D. Rockefeller
I was trained from the beginning to work, to save, and to give.
John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
It’s not just about being able to write a check. It’s being able to touch somebody’s life.
Paul Schervish: Donors used to support nonprofits to help them acheive their mission. Now we support nonprofits so that they can help us achieve our personal mission.
Serious philanthropy is serious work.
An essential element of philanthropy is measurement.
Philanthropy is not a matter of doing the right thing; it is a matter of doing the right thing for you.
In philanthropy, the choices are not between right and wrong, but between right and right.
In philanthropy you can’t just “go for it.”
[Organizations:] Follow your mission; don’t follow the money. If you follow the mission, money will come. If you follow the money, the mission can get lost somewhere behind you.
[When joining of Board of Directors:] A donor has to rely on the strangth of ideas, not the amount of the gift.
Michael Hammer: You can’t improve what you can’t measure.
The nonprofit realm lacks the bottom-line measure of for-profits, but that doesn’t mean it lacks any measures at all.
Good evaluation can attract donors.
By deciding what it is that we seek to measure, we learn what it is we most strongly value.
We must reject the idea — well-intentioned, but dead wrong — that the primary path to greatness in the social sectors is to become “more like a business.” (pg 1)
In business, money is both an input and an output. In the social sectors, money is only an input, and not a measure of greatness. (pg 3)
The basic idea is still the same: separate inputs from outputs, and hold yourself accountable for progress in outputs, even if those outputs defy measurement. (pg 3)
It really doesn’t matter whether you can quantify your results. What matters is that you rigorously assemble evidence — quantitative or qualitative — to track your progress. (pg 7)
Greatness is an inherently dynamic process, not an end point. (pg 9)
Social sectors leaders only appear less decisive than business leaders to those who fail to grasp the complex governance and diffuse power structures. (pg 10)
Ironic: Social sector organizations increasingly look to business for leadership models and talent, yet I suspect we will find more true leadership in social sectors that the business sector. (pg 12)
The practice of leadership is not the exercise of power. (pg 12)
True leadership only exists if people follow when they have the freedom not to. (pg 13)
Peter Drucker: The foundation for doing good is doing well. (pg 22)
In social sectors, unfortunately, there is no guarantee between exceptional results an sustained access to resources. (pg 24)
Key link in the social sectors is brand reputation so that potential supporters believe not only in your mission, but in your capacity to deliver on that mission. (pg 25)
Great business corporations share more in common with great social sector organizations than they share with mediocre businesses. (pg 30)
Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious choice, and discipline. (pg 31)
Do one thing everyday that scares you.
Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts, don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours.
Don’t waste your time on jealousy; sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind – the race is long, and in the end, it’s only with yourself.
Remember the compliments you receive, forget the insults; if you succeed in doing this, tell me how.
What ever you do, don’t congratulate yourself too much or berate yourself either – your choices are half chance, so are everybody else’s.
Do NOT read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.
Get to know your parents, you never know when they’ll be gone for good.
Be nice to your siblings; they are the best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.
Understand that friends come and go, but for the precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle because the older you get, the more you need the people you knew when you were young.