By Cat Donovan Executive Assistant Big Buzz Idea Group In March of 2020 we began navigating a maze of unknown depth and complexity. Juggling balls and spinning plates multiplied by the day. Professional settings and expectations changed overnight. Families with school-aged children had the routines they depended on completely uprooted. It quickly became apparent that managing and maintaining positive mental health was going to be both a challenge and a priority. The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF), a nonprofit organization focusing on national health issues, released the results of a tracking poll about one year into the pandemic that indicated four...
By Melissa Lagowski CEO/Founder/Queen Bee Big Buzz Idea Group Have you ever had one of those situations? You know the one. You are communicating with a colleague, and you thought that you had given such incredibly clear directions that you couldn’t believe it when they didn’t do what you had instructed? It happens unintentionally. Most of the time people think that they are being very specific in their conversations. We believe that we have transferred all the relevant information for the recipient to properly execute a task, but in reality we have a lot of information in our mind that...
By Brad Ball Vice President Big Buzz Idea Group Celebrating wins and recognizing opportunities for improvement are crucial components of successful and connected teams. Each week, the staff at Big Buzz Idea Group meets on Monday and Friday mornings and included on those agendas is “Something Good” and “Something Better.” By taking just a few minutes each week to connect about successes and SNAFUs, we enjoy a deeper connection to one another and the work we do for our clients. Something Good “The power of progress is fundamental to human nature, but few managers understand it or know how to...
Big Buzz Idea Group has enjoyed consulting nonprofits for the past 15 years, and over that time, whenever we met a new potential client, we heard a very common theme: “I had no idea a company like yours even existed!” The need for assistance has never been more obvious, which is why we are presenting a new suite of budget-friendly services to a larger audience of nonprofits.
Your mission is our mission, and now in addition to “powering nonprofit organizations to fuel positive change in the world,” we want to also “power nonprofit professionals” to accelerate your organization to fuel positive change in the world.
By: Melissa Lagowski
CEO/Founder/Queen Bee of Big Buzz Idea Group
We all dream of a Board that wants to help move the mission outside of the Board Meeting. All too often, many Executive Directors share woeful stories of board members who barely show up for the meetings let alone support the organization in other ways. But lately, we have been hearing stories about boards and volunteers who are looking for ways to contribute in more meaningful ways. To maximize the willingness of leaders to support your nonprofit, it is important that you properly prepare for these opportunities.
You might feel like you will never break free from Zoom calls and virtual meetings right now, but we will reach the other side of this “shelter in place” soon. However, the world as we knew it will never be the same. Have you started thinking about what this means for you and your nonprofit?
Many organizations have been extremely busy as a result of COVID-19, trying to keep up with an increased demand from core constituencies and working to pivot their in-person services to virtual programming. Nonprofit leaders have been struggling to stay abreast of financial assistance programs, additional giving campaigns and managing remote workforces. We get that you are busier than ever right now, but times like this are for preparation and innovation. If you actively invest the time now to plan out what you want to achieve on the other side of COVID-19, you are far more likely to succeed. You must make the time to begin planning for a future that has already been altered.
It was 2004 when a local nonprofit org (NPO) came to me and asked, “Can you review our project for us?” They had been working with a professional event planner, expecting that the agency would make their annual event more successful than ever before – but in reality, the gross profit had tripled while the net profit had been somehow cut in half. Big Buzz Idea Group was borne out of that project review. I found it difficult to believe that the NPO wasn’t getting all that it was expecting, and it seemed clear that they had been taken advantage...
In the summer of 2015, I was having lunch with a friend at Navy Pier, talking about how hard Big Buzz works to make an impact in the nonprofit arena. That conversation stuck with me for weeks. All I could think about was how we could make a bigger impact in the nonprofit sector than we were currently making. A few weeks later while driving down Lake Shore Drive, it hit me: Big Buzz Idea Group needed to offer more than just event planning services! After a quick assessment of my years of nonprofit service, I realized that I had...
It was October 1, 1999, when I began my first full-time position in the nonprofit world. I showed up excitedly at 9 am ready to dig in and get started. The president of the organization met me at the office, said the organization was looking forward to working with me, handed me the key to the office and walked out the door. Now what? As a staff of one, I was responsible for what would become 24 annual events, 12 newsletters and 8 committees. I remember looking around the office and trying to figure out where to begin. There was...
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