productivity Archives - 501Partners LLC

Play in the Sandbox for (Salesforce) Safety

By | CRM & Salesforce, Data Management


Did you ever have one of those moments where you wished that your life had an “Undo” button?  Of course you did! Maybe it was when you did something stupid, or when you crumpled a fender trying to squeeze into a parking place. Clients often assume that Salesforce has one too, and they blunder ahead without fear. The bad news is that Salesforce does NOT have an Undo button. Why not? As an online platform, it really can’t: once a command is sent to the server in Seattle or Atlanta or Kuala Lumpur, one cannot retrieve it.

However, Salesforce does have something that’s just as good as an Undo button: it’s called a Sandbox. A Sandbox allows you to test out changes to your Salesforce without affecting your data. Once you get the Sandbox working, you can reproduce it in your organization’s Salesforce account (called Production) and Voila! You’ve created your own Salesforce Undo button.

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Salesforce Tip: Email Many Contacts at Once

By | Data Management, Nonprofit Tech

Have you ever looked at a list of Salesforce contacts and wished you could email some of them without having to create a campaign or a special view?  Have you ever been frustrated that the NPSP’s Affiliated Contacts structure removes the one useful part of Salesforce emailing (the ability to find other contacts with the same Account)?  Do you often need to email all Contacts affiliated with an Account?

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501Partners Does a Listening Tour of Local Nonprofits

By | CRM & Salesforce, Nonprofit Management, Nonprofit Tech


Over the last couple of months, I have been doing a “Listening Tour” of local nonprofits to learn more about how organizations are managing their data and the challenges they face. I’ve met with staff from 10 different nonprofits, ranging in size from 5-100 staff, and representing a variety of issue areas. I’ve heard the perspectives of program and development staff, as well as those in charge of managing the data for their organizations.
With such a spread in size and maturity, it’s no surprise that each organization handles data differently and uses a variety of systems. There was a huge range in the levels of sophistication, from the small organization that was mainly paper-based and tracked constituents on an Excel spreadsheet, to the organizations using the full extent of CRM software to manage most of their enterprise-wide data functions.

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Saw Sharpening

Nonprofits and Steven Covey’s Seven Habits

By | Nonprofit Management, Nonprofit Resources

The_7_Habits_of_Highly_Effective_PeopleIn the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey codified a set of behaviors that can be applied to both personal conduct and organizational behavior.

The seventh habit he identified, Sharpen the Saw, seems to be one of the most obvious and least practiced.  Sharpen the Saw comes out of a story of a frustrated lumberjack who is working tirelessly to cut down a tree, and says he doesn’t have time to stop and sharpen his saw, when it would actually help him to cut the tree far more efficiently and save him time in the long run. Sharpen the Saw is about thinking beyond short-term needs and determining ways to build capacity.

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