Archives for category: Office systems

We’ve all been there: you have a great idea and want to know how to make it happen. The first four people it is proposed to respond with “I love this! But first please read this 1,000 word essay on why you don’t understand how busy I am.” Read the rest of this entry »


Or, What do you mean I can’t bill you for lunch? Read the rest of this entry »

There isn’t a nonprofit entrepreneur in America that doesn’t hate the idea of a board of directors, of required board resolutions, of relinquishing some control through the annoyance of having to ask the board. Paperwork seems fussy, and if you wanted to be a paper-pusher you’d work in a bank.

Get over it. First, your board is your best friend, and second, the law requires compliance. I’m not crazy about the model myself, but it’s what we’ve got, and you can make it work. Read the rest of this entry »

I work from home.

Working out of your house sounds like a great gig, and in many ways it is. I can get chores done while waiting for a file to print out, and wander in the garden while conducting business on the phone. I don’t have to start dinner at 8 unless I want to, and I almost never have to sit in traffic, or wait in the cold for the train.

But then, last Monday I went for 5 hours without speaking. Read the rest of this entry »

I once read a database training manual. Really.

I had to do this because the bookkeeping office accidentally wiped out 25 years of records without backing up, about a month after I started the job, and before I was really familiar with the system. (Fortunately we had unassailable paper records–ALWAYS keep the paper records, but that’s another topic).

And yet I didn’t really get comfortable with that database until I took the training and had someone give me rules based on what I was seeing on the screen.

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Pamela Grow recently asked me if I had a simple tool for establishing database protocols, which, being an utter database geek, of course I do.

I’m using the term “protocol” to mean “the proper way to do something” in other words, a system of rules.

And as far as I’m concerned, having everyone with permission to alter your database in any way on board with these protocols is as important as curtseying to the Queen.

Simply. Not. Negotiable.

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