Kris Putnam-Walkerly

Four Lessons Motherhood and Having Twins Taught Me About Philanthropy

Just about every aspiring mom (and dad) has big plans and preconceived ideas about what pregnancy and parenthood will be like. You picture the way your life might change, you plan out a nursery, order a crib – it’s pretty straightforward stuff. Straightforward, that is, until you discover you’re having twins! Suddenly, all those plans …

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A Year of Crisis Forced Foundations to Change Bad Practices. They Should Never Revert to the Old Ways.

Long before the pandemic hit, it was clear philanthropy needed an overhaul. But the health and economic crisis, combined with a national racial reckoning, forced grant makers’ hands. Foundations largely rose to the challenge by speeding up their grant making, increasing flexibility, and reducing funding restrictions. But now it appears those changes may be short lived. In the most …

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8 Questions to Maintain Your New “Best Practices”

Don’t slide back to your old ways. If you’re like many funders, the changes you made in 2020 were swift and dramatic. You dropped tightly held practices like hot potatoes: loosening funding restrictions, eliminating burdensome policies, offering general operating support, collaborating with new partners, increasing grant payout, and dramatically expanding support for racial justice. As …

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Does Your Philanthropy Suffer From A Scarcity Mindset?

Take this short quiz to find out. It’s philanthropy’s Achilles heel. Foundation leaders, donors, professional athletes, corporate executives—-all philanthropists—-want to be good caretakers of their charitable wealth. They want their assets and profits to grow, so there’s more wealth to give. They also want to reduce their philanthropic costs and save money, so there’s more …

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Trusting Relationships Advance Philanthropy During Times Of Crisis

Build trusting relationships before times get tough. Regardless of who you’re trying to help or who your potential collaborators are, we’re all human and we need to know that we can count on people to show up and do what they say they’re going to do. In times of difficulty, relationships get tested, stress levels …

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4 Ways Philanthropists Shut Down Because Of Overwhelm

How To Find The Reset Button A serious, but largely overlooked, problem in philanthropy is feeling overwhelmed. What is overwhelm? According to wellness writer Michelle Rees, “Overwhelm happens when the sheer volume of thoughts feelings, tasks, and stimuli in our daily environment shifts our brain and nervous system into a reactive, stressed state.” The result? …

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