Often the resolutions to our challenges are right in front of us. It would appear--especially for those of us affiliated with the work of non-profit organizations--that it is our belief the resolutions, in order to be effective, have to be more complex, detailed, tested, expensive, debated, focus-group approved, consensus made, stakeholder engaged, consultant-driven. We have convinced ourselves that reaching out to the problem solving industry is better than accessing our own common sense and intuition. Think about it!
Now, it is true, some challenges we face require additional support. Big support. And, sometimes the resolution to what feels like a major institutional problem is just plain and simple:
- Offering a contract to the new hire may help them to stay longer and alleviate your fear of an abrupt departure.
- Hiring an electrician to relocate the electric outlet which will enable the computer to be moved so that the greeters' backs are not facing guests as they enter the building.
- Adjusting or amending your strategic plan (or Bylaws, for that matter) when it fails to inspire or organize people toward goal achievement.
- Requesting that a disengaged board member step down prior to the completion of a term.
- Replacing meeting mechanics (i.e. Robert's Rules of Order) with a dose of healthy facilitation skills, hearty discussion, and a clock to keep time.
- Treating anyone in your midst as a potential donor and using every gathering of people as a cultivation opportunity.
- Keeping it real...simple...real simple.
Think about your challenges for a moment. Give them some order, biggest to not biggest (rarely are our challenges viewed as small). Now consider the biggest challenge and what you know is the resolution. Go deep. You probably know the ways to address the challenge. Now think about what you are actually doing to address the big challenge. What is the gap between what you know/intuit and what you are actually doing? What would alignment between the two look like to you? What are the barriers in the way of your intuition coming forth and resolving the matter? When you say "yes" to an overly-processed solution, what are you saying "no" to? What would simplicity look like?
Take the biggest challenge on your list and resolve to resolve it...today!