Jim Morgan talks about the genesis of Applied Wisdom for the Nonprofit Sector, and the ways in which nonprofits can use the booklet to strengthen their leadership and management skills.
Q: What is Applied Wisdom for the Nonprofit Sector?
Jim: Applied Wisdom for the Nonprofit Sector is an effort to help improve the management and the operational excellence of nonprofits. From my work in nonprofits we see that there really hasn’t been much practical management material available. And so this is a summary
effort to help with that.
Q: How can nonprofits benefit?
Jim: I’ve found the management tips I’ve developed have helped build a strong culture with effective implementation in the organizations that I’ve been involved with over the years.
Q: Is there a story behind how you developed your leadership insights?
Jim: I grew up in a small town in the Midwest. We had a family farm and cannery. It gave me some opportunities to get some experience when I was very young. For example, I managed a small crew in the warehouse when I was about 15. Things went on from there. I went to college, and then in the Reserve Officers Training summer camp at Fort Bragg, with the 82nd Airborne, I was given a little wallet-size card that had the principles and traits of leadership. And since then I began to put away ideas that I’d run across, or get from people, or articles over the years, and eventually I realized that a lot of the experience I’d had in the cannery and growing up was applicable to good management tips. I’ve kept those and in my thirties I realized that my purpose in life was to help other people individually, and as organizations, to meet their potential. I had other ideas from management that I gained at Textron, from my years in venture capital, and of course the almost three decades I spent as CEO at Applied Materials, here in Silicon Valley. And then various nonprofit efforts have also contributed ideas that I’ve included here.
Q: Where did the tips come from?
Jim: When I was working on my autobiography I actually identified over a hundred tips. I didn’t even realize there that many at the beginning. But those have been valuable and I picked out a few of the key ones to use in this booklet, Applied Wisdom for the Nonprofit Sector.
Q: What value do you hope nonprofits will gain?
Jim: Well, I hope the nonprofits will learn from the material in the booklet and the website applied wisdom for nonprofits, about how to improve their management and their organizational strength.
Q: What should people do after they read Applied Wisdom for the Nonprofit Sector?
Jim: One of the things I hope is, and I think it would be really helpful to each person that has exposed to these ideas, is to develop their own list of tips over the decades ahead and incorporate the ones that seem to work into their management culture and management style, and just really take advantage of what they’ll pick up.
There’s a lot of good ideas out there and sometimes the old ideas come back, that all of a sudden can fit into a new situation. So it’s both great for new ideas and for the application of old ideas.
Q: Do you have any other suggestions?
Jim: We’ve recently taken some of these tips and incorporated them into a very short email each week, an idea that’s current, related to the current times. And I hope people will follow those and pick the ones that might work for them and think about how they can improve their organization. Just a little tickler to get you to think about it each week or so.
To your success!