The arrival of Spring signals renewal and the time for a good clean-up-cleaning out the attic, weeding the garden, or setting new goals.
For employees, May is also a month reminding workers about hard-won civil rights and policies that are easy to take for granted on a daily basis - such as eight-hour work days, weekends, and the many other benefits brought to us by organized labor.
While labor rights have come a long way within the last century, the sector’s awareness is critical to extending those rights to every worker. In order to effectively accomplish mission and serve those suffering injustices, nonprofits can also do their part by working efficiently and productively as possible.
How does your organization measure up?
Spring clean your work environment for better performance. Focus on operational efforts. Schedule a team meeting to reevaluate all processes and procedures, brainstorm, and plan.
Here are some areas for focus:
Review the budget: What funds can be reallocated? Are fundraising efforts fruitful? Identify unnecessary spending as well as reduce your nonprofit’s environmental impact by encouraging employees to practice eco-conscious habits - like using refillable K-cups.
Rearrange the office to foster feelings of rejuvenation and upend any stagnation that’s bogging down your colleagues. A little feng shui never hurt anybody.
Create cooperative documents that allows team members to express their ideas during working hours. Set up a Google Doc or survey to obtain useful feedback.
Collaborate and coordinate with other departments, nonprofits, or organizations for a larger pool of ideas, manpower, and support.
Revamp outreach campaigns. What are some traditions in your community with which you can coordinate events? The giving of “May baskets,” usually left anonymously on neighbors’ doorsteps, can be inspiration for collecting food for local pantries and tying events to broad causes and community needs.
Also take advantage of this time to review employees’ rights and organizational policies. Invite HR personnel to join the discussion and field questions or concerns.
- Register for Washington Nonprofits’ free webinar, Financial Spring Cleaning: Does Your Organization Do an Annual Review of Your Banking? offered May 1.
What are some of your methods to stay productive and efficient at work?
For more information about organized labor or May Day/International Workers’ Day, its history, and traditions consult the following resources:
Sarah is a self-proclaimed cat lady, chocoholic, beard enthusiast, and aspiring writer. She is currently a graduate student pursuing a Master of Professional Writing at Chatham University.