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Joanne Fritz

What Personal Attributes Are Most Prized by Nonprofit Professionals?

By February 8, 2011

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On the Chronicle of Philanthropy's group page on LinkedIn, Adam Lewis, COO at Innovate CV, asked this question: "In order to succeed in the non-profit sector, what attribute do you think is most vital?" But Lewis made it harder by asking for ONE WORD answers.

The last time I looked, there were more than 100 answers to this question. It is a fun list to read, although apparently people in nonprofit are often too loquacious to stick to one word.

However, the responses frequently reflected the sense of humor that most nonprofit folks have in abundance (although that trait did not float to the top for some reason). My favorite in this category was "lobotomy."

I did a quick and dirty count of the answers and came up with the five attributes that showed up most often. I had to combine similar traits to do this. For instance, I lumped "vision," "imagination," "creativity," and "think-out-of-the-box" to come up with "visionary."

The list continues should you want to chime in at LinkedIn. Just look under groups and find Chronicle of Philanthropy. You'll need to register with LinkedIn and join the group.

Meanwhile, take my own poll. You can choose more than one attribute, by the way.


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