Better Together: The Companion Workbook
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Better Together: The Companion Workbook

About the Book

About the Author

John M. Fulwider, Ph.D.
John M. Fulwider, Ph.D.

Professional communicator John Fulwider helps nonprofit chief executives advance their strategic visions through everyday conversations. Combining coaching, teaching, and training, John works exclusively with high-achieving CEOs who want their leadership teams and boards rowing in the same direction. He is a sought-after speaker and the not-yet-bestselling author of five books, including Better Together: How Top Nonprofit CEOs and Board Chairs Get Happy and Fall in Love (with the Mission) and Everyday Strategic Conversations: How Top Nonprofit CEOs Get Their Teams and Boards Rowing in the Same Direction.

John works primarily with community-development organizations and foundations, and those that mainly serve children. Some recent clients include alt.Consulting, Minnesota Philanthropy Partners, NeighborWorks Lincoln, NeighborWorks America, and West Central Initiative.

John’s clients have included:

Child-Focused: Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Midlands, Child Advocacy Center, Hope Center for Kids

Economic Development: alt.Consulting, Center for Rural Entrepreneurship, Goodwill Industries

Foundations: Heartland Council of Community Foundations, Kearney Area Community Foundation, Minnesota Philanthropy Partners, Nebraska Community Foundation, West Central Initiative

Health Care: Brain Injury Association of Kansas and Greater Kansas City, Brain Injury Association of Nebraska, Bryan Health, Nebraska Optometric Association

Housing and Community Development: Lincoln/Lancaster County Habitat for Humanity, NeighborWorks America, NeighborWorks Lincoln

Higher Education: South Dakota State University, University of Nebraska Public Policy Center

Other: Human Services Federation, KZUM 89.3 FM, Lincoln American Marketing Association, Lincoln Arts Council, Lincoln’s Young Professionals Group

John is also a happy husband, a proud papa, a fun-loving foodie, and an advocate of alliteration. He has lived and traveled all over the world. He is a passionate foodie who can suggest what to eat, and where, in an impressive number of cities. While he charges a lot for his other services, his advice on eating out is always free.

John previously taught political science at the university level and wrote about politics for various newspapers. He holds a doctorate in political science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Five things you might not otherwise know about John:

  • His favorite cuisines are Ethiopian, German, and Indian, in that order.
  • He once completed a five-rappel descent off Cat in the Hat in the dark, without a headlamp.
  • He’s a redhead whose hair has gone dark. (Sad.)
  • He still has the rock he used to (slowly) chip ice out of the wheel wells (all four!) of his Geo Metro one particularly wintry day in Boulder, Colorado, circa 1996.
  • He adores functional public transportation systems with an abiding passion.

Table of Contents

    • Praise for Better Together
    • Acknowledgments
    • 1. Introduction
      • Who This Workbook’s For
      • How to Use This Workbook
    • 2. Quick Win Partnership Plans
      • Improve a Poor or OK Relationship
      • Jumpstart a New Partnership
      • Make a Good Partnership Great
      • Accomplishment Agenda
      • Go It Alone, Initially
    • 3. Start with Assessment and Understanding
      • Start with Why
      • What’s in It for You?
      • Deeply Understand Your Partner
      • Establish Fit
      • Gut Check: Is It You?
    • 4. Develop Your Partnership
      • Check the Prerequisites
      • Key 1: Trust and Transparency
      • Key 2: Clear Expectations
      • Key 3: Frequent Communication
    • 5. Conversation Starters: People
      • Building a Strong Board Leadership Bench
      • Building a Strong Staff Leadership Bench
      • Professional Development
      • Salaries and Benefits
      • Board Culture
      • Staff Culture
      • Board Engagement
      • Board Recruitment
      • Chief Executive Evaluation
      • Board Chair and Board Evaluation
    • 6. Conversation Starters: Programs
      • Mission and Vision
      • Meeting Community Needs
      • Sustainability
      • Revenue Development
      • Business Model
      • External Threats
      • Internal Threats
    • 7. Conversation Starters: Processes
      • Strategic Planning
      • Governance
      • Accountability and Transparency
      • Marketing
      • Internal Communication
      • Succession Planning for the Board Chair
      • Succession Planning for the Chief Executive
    • 8. Help Others Improve Their Partnerships
    • 9. Training Outlines
      • Option 1: Stimulating Discussion
      • Option 2: Chief Executives with Their Board Chairs
      • Option 3: Chief Executives and Board Chairs, Not Paired Together
  • Shameless Self-Promotion
    • 10. Partnership Jumpstart
    • 11. Better Together: The Main Book
    • 12. Help Me Improve the 2nd Edition
    • 13. Services for Nonprofits
      • Executive Coaching
      • Strategic Planning
      • Team Building
      • Internal Communication
    • 14. Speaking Topics
      • Better Together (workshop version)
      • Better Together (general educational version)
      • Advance Your Career through Nonprofit Board Service
      • Making Rock Stars for Mission Impact
    • 15. About the Author
    • 16. Contact Me

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