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Daily Nuggets: A For Impact Blog

Good to Great: Another View

Special Offer: I’ve never done this before, but I will personally guarantee the ‘IMPACT’ of this book.

Not only will I buy it back from you if you don’t find the VALUE; I’ll send you a $100 ‘CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTION’ (if you get my meaning) if you send me back this book and tell me it didn’t have an ‘IMPACT’ on your FOR IMPACT ORGANIZATION.

Since I’ve spent my entire life in this sector, I would like to respectfully offer another view of some of Jim Collins’ thoughts and comments. (It’s certainly not because he is ‘WRONG’, but rather, I think, because his primary FOCUS has been in the world of BUSINESS.)

  • 18‘: Any GOOD TO GREAT measurement that is primarily based on 18 LARGE PUBLICLY HELD COMPANIES does not always produce the results that can be of value to smaller entrepreneurial organizations.In our world, if I were to use the COUNCIL OF 18 (interesting that they’re both 18!) as the model for a GREAT FOR IMPACT ORGANIZATION … it would be a joke. Most of these ’18’ are huge bureaucratic, command and control, impact-less organizations. They can’t CHANGE. They can’t let go of sacred cows or baggage. And, they’re getting their lunch handed to them by smaller, nimbler mavericks and social entrepreneurs.
  • The term ‘SOCIAL SECTOR’ is too narrow a term. It doesn’t imply education, healthcare, art, etc. Obviously, I’d love to call this entire sector the FOR IMPACT SECTOR. At the very least, we ought to go with the ‘3rd SECTOR’, which acknowledges that there is a PUBLIC and a PRIVATE and a NON-PUBLIC/NON-PRIVATE/’NONPROFIT’.
  • SOCIAL SECTOR ‘CONSTRAINTS’. I really think these are more about ‘BAGGAGE’ and ‘BOXES’ and ‘SACRED COWS’ than they are true CONSTRAINTS.This is particularly important relative to (TALENT) STAFFING CONSTRAINTS’. Getting the ‘right people on the bus‘ is still paramount, as is ‘getting the wrong people off the bus‘ and the ‘right people in the right seats‘.I have never found ‘SALARIES’ at great ‘NONPROFITS’ as any kind of true CONSTRAINT. In fact, the CAUSE usually allows for an offset. My take on this is summarized in TALENT SPECTRUM, and supported by just about everybody who writes about ‘BOOMERS’, ‘GEEZERS’, and moving from ‘SUCCESS TO SIGNIFICANCE’.
  • 3 CIRCLES/ECONOMIC ENGINE/MONEY. Of everything that Collins wrote, I found this to be the most disheartening.His 3 CIRCLES (Passion, Best in the World, Economic Engine) are perhaps the most powerful visual, framework and guiding principle for ANYONE and ANY ORGANIZATION.Anybody who ‘rebelled’ against the ‘3rd Circle’ (Economic Engine) terribly misunderstood Collins’ point (and my point).

    In my world, it’s all about IMPACT DRIVES INCOME. Which is also translated into Covey’s “No Money. No Mission.” And my corollary, which is “No Mission. No Money.

    Pastor Morgan was way off base when he talked about the ‘root of all evil‘.

    I have never been with any For Impact Leader, Social Entrepreneur or Board Member or Volunteer Leader who doesn’t understand the concept of:

  • SUSTAINABILITY. This section also brought up the ‘SUSTAINABILITY’ word. (This goes back to one of the premises/basic concepts in BUILT TO LAST.)A big, big part of me tries to help For Impact Organizations come up with a great SOLUTION … delivered with great DISCIPLINE … and then, basically try to put itself OUT OF BUSINESS! The organization may disappear but the SOLUTION remains. (A great example of this is Rotary and its incredible impact upon POLIO.)