Reflecting on 2016 and Planning for the Future

Dear YNPNdc members,

ynpndc.JPGIt’s been a busy month for YNPNdc and for our country. Earlier this month, we elected a new president after a campaign season that was emotionally draining, painful, and divisive for many Americans. Now, more than ever, the nonprofit sector will play a critical role in serving the common good, empowering and supporting underserved communities, protecting our environment, and uniting communities that seem more divided than ever before.

YNPNdc values leadership, community, diversity, and inclusion and remains committed to upholding those values as we support all emerging nonprofit professionals in greater Washington.

A few weeks ago, I was joined by several YNPNdc members to reflect on the election, and I appreciated hearing your thoughts and concerns as we think about how to move forward. I was impressed by the thoughtfulness with which the group considered the role of nonprofits, YNPNdc, and our members in continuing to make progress on our missions while managing personal and professional reactions to the outcome of the election. The following comments resonated with me and have sparked new ideas about how we, as the next generation of sector leaders, can demonstrate the leadership that our sector needs:

  • In the wake of a significant societal or political change, how are our career path decisions impacted? How are young professionals navigating decisions between ‘staying the course’ with their current career path and making a change based on new passions or urgent issues?
  • How can we find unlikely allies to make greater progress on our missions? Might we achieve common ground with those ‘across the aisle’ by finding small issues or goals where we can work together, instead of remaining in a place of dialogue and discussion over areas of discord?
  • How can we build new connections between national and local organizations that share common goals to achieve greater impact, especially as some larger, national organizations have received significant attention (and funding) in the past few weeks?
  • How can young professionals work together to push for innovation in their respective organizations, by providing peer support and learning on issues such as collaboration; diversity, equity, and inclusion; and new methods of program/service development, such as human-centered design?

I would love to hear your thoughts on those questions - or to hear additional questions that this post may have sparked. Please feel free to comment below, or to email me at marie.leblanc@ynpndc.org.

Best,
Marie

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