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“Nadia is nothing short of amazing! She continues to work with us on Our Restorative Justice a 501(c)(3) that seeks to disrupt the school to prison pipeline at as many points as possible using time honored restorative justice practices. Nadia has helped us in innumerable ways. She has coached our ED and me as board chair. She has helped us with fundraising work, grant writing work, board governance and development strategy issues. She is highly creative and finds all kinds of informational resources that extend her help cost effectively through things you and I can read. She takes her strong corporate world background and disciplined skills, and uses them to support the efforts of the nonprofit world. Enormously importantly she has excellent judgment and a keen sense of when to support and when to allow those in the entity who should lead to do exactly that. She works with perseverance, good humor and humility. Nadia’s heart is enormous and it shines through in everything she does. And, so far (which is the better part of a year), I have not detected anything that a 501(c)(3) might need that she can’t do or help to do. Nadia is a rare and precious gem nestled into the stones on the beach of life. If you have picked her up from among the others, do not put her down!”
by Professor Susan Maze-Rothstein Northeastern University School of Law/Founder, Our Restorative Justice

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Words Matter – Use Them Wisely!  

Nadia Prescott

Nadia Prescott

How effectively you write can mean the difference between winning or losing that grant or sales proposal. How well you use words to communicate to your team is equally as powerful.

It’s important to pay the attention to the words you use when speaking, particularly if you are in a leadership role. How carefully you communicate can mean the difference between a team who is completely invested to your organization’s project or vision, or just simply compliant. The words you choose can inspire, demotivate or keep your team “stuck”.

For example, consider the words you use when trying to get something done. If you nonchalantly request that a task get completed, and it doesn’t happen, do you get frustrated or upset? Were you really demanding instead of requesting? If the task requires completion, is there a way to successfully communicate its importance so that your team feels motivated and is eager to complete it? Remember – the words you use to inspire actually matter a lot.

As an executive coach, I have consistently observed how the words people use reflect their commitment to complete, or not complete, a task.  If someone communicates that they will try to make 10 sales calls or connect with 10 potential funders before our next meeting, I know immediately there is little guarantee of follow through.  However, if someone communicates that they absolutely will make those 10 calls, I am pretty confident it will get done. They have communicated their intention to be action oriented and successful in completing the task. More often than not, those people who declare their intention make very effective leaders.

Beyond committing to a task, a leader must be committed to him or herself.  If your actions do not demonstrate a commitment to yourself, how can you expect others to be committed? Think about the difference in how you feel when you state, “I will complete this today” versus “I will try and complete this today”. Which one of these statements makes you feel more empowered and productive?

Being an effective leader, defining your future, and accomplishing your goals often requires you push yourself beyond your comfort level. You might have to take on certain tasks that aren’t particularly enjoyable. But always keep the bigger picture in mind. In many cases, the goal is to develop crucial relationships with new funders or sales prospects.  Always be striving for long term fulfilment instead of short term satisfaction.

As Don Miguel Ruiz stated in his book, The Four Agreements, “Be impeccable with your word”.  He couldn’t have been more right!