Update on Consultant’s Retreat

Community and Collaboration — these are a few of my favorite things. On Tuesday I got great big doses of both by attending the HNK Consultants’ Community retreat.

HNK, which stands for Health in a New Key, is a group of consultants who work with non-profit organizations. It is sponsored by the St. Luke’s Health Initiative and facilitated by Bonnie Wright. The point of the group is to come together and share ideas, tools and best practices.

We started the day with a World Cafe (http://www.theworldcafe.com/) to consider the question “In your experience in building healthy and resilient organizations and communities, what are the essential elements that lead to success?” This was followed by other useful questions that evolved from the first conversations.

My favorite part of the day was a series of speed presentations — only five minutes per speaker!  It’s not easy to convey useful information in an engaging way in such a short time and all of the presenters did a fine job. The presenters and topics were:
  • Elaine Fogel: Your Consultant Brand – Developing Your Brand Personality
  • Karen Ramsey: Identifying Key Leadership Competencies in the Nonprofit Sector
  • Leslie Knowlton: Character
  • Andrea Allen: Community Impact Through Mapping
  • Reuben Sanchez: “That reminds me of a story…”
  • Carolyn A. Holmes: Engaging Leadership Volunteers in Building Organizational Capacity
  • Diana V. Hoyt: The Effective Fundraising Project and Its Impact on Creating Fundraising Strategies
  • Dolores Retana: Cultural Sensitivity in Board Development
  • Steve Weitzenkorn: The Value and Power of Trust. . . and How to Build It
Jack Smith, of http://www.thesociallatte.com, gave a great presentation for us on how to use social media for our businesses. There is a blog post link on his site that covers many of the same details. Jack told us about an interesting website that licenses short instructional videos (http://www.commoncraft.com/twitter-search).

And we ended the day using Open Space technologies (http://www.openspaceworld.org/) to choose questions or topics that we wanted to discuss more. It’s a great way to turn information and good ideas into action.

The annual retreat is planned by a highly collaborative sub-group of HNK members and they did an excellent job. Thanks!

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