August 24, 2020

“A bunch of meetings a day keeps the progress away”

25 famous proverbs rewritten for nonprofits, philanthropists, and everything in between.

2 min read
1

If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, provide multi-year general operating dollars, invest in BIPOC leaders, and cut out all the BS in your grant applications.

2

Once bitten, twice unlikely to join your DEI committee.

3

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a corny icebreaker.

4

A bunch of meetings a day keeps the progress away.

Related article: Get donor attention, guaranteed

5

It is better to light a candle and THEN curse the foundations that refuse to fund electricity.

6

A spoon does not know the taste of soup, nor a corporate leader who has only had board experience automatically know how to be an effective ED/CEO of a nonprofit or foundation.

7

The reputation of a thousand years may be determined by the conduct of a single Zoom meeting.

8

Actions speak louder than white papers.

9

One man’s junk is another man’s silent auction items.

10

Measure twice, cut once, unless you are most nonprofits and foundations, then measure 100 times and forget where you put the scissors.

proverbs rewritten

11

A funder in need is a friend indeed.

12

Misery loves tedious grant applications.

13

Too many wordsmiths spoil the mission statement.

14

You can lead a horse to a strategic planning meeting, but don’t be surprised if the horse says nay to everything.

15

The road to hell is paved with book clubs.

Related article: Hierarchy of needs for nonprofits

16

It takes a whole village to raise some money.

17

A rolling stone will likely be among the useless items donated to your nonprofit.

18

The squeaky wheel gets offered a severance package and an NDA.

19

Rome wasn’t built on one-year grants.

20

A fool and his money are often asked to join nonprofit boards.

21

Do unto your interns what you would like your interns to do unto you when they are your boss in the future.

22

Multi-year general operating funds are the best medicine.

23

Where there is smoke, there’s probably a group of employees talking about how annoying the ED is.

24

People who live in glass houses should pay more taxes. Those houses look expensive as hell.

25

Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and that doesn’t mean he has the supplies, or that the pond is accessible or hasn’t been depleted or made toxic by commercial fishing. Also, did he ask you to teach him? I didn’t think so, Kevin.

This article was originally published on Nonprofit AF.

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ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Vu Le Profile
Vu Le

Vu Le (“voo lay”) is a writer, speaker, vegan, Pisces, and Executive Director, Rainier Valley Corps, a nonprofit in Seattle that promotes social justice by developing leaders of colour, strengthening organisations led by communities of color, and fostering collaboration between diverse communities. Check out his other posts at Nonprofit AF.

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