Adapting to change through life-long learning: resources we recommend

Adapting to change through life-long learning: resources we recommend

“Afraid of change? Drop it here” said the sign on the tip jar at the coffee house. The pace of change in our world is head-turning. There is no cure for the fast pace of life; there is only adaptation. We must learn to embrace change, continuously learn, and find ways to be more efficient.

At North Star NP, we make it a priority to keep up with the changes in nonprofit business practices so we can do the best for our customers. We attend seminars and conferences; view webinars; read blogs and posts; consult with specialists. Our staff have compiled a reference list of free and inexpensive resources for continuous learning in three areas: technology, human resources, and accounting. We hope you find it useful. And if you have any additions or suggestions, contact us.


Technology changes at lightning speed. Three-D printing, artificial intelligence, and cryptocurrency seemed like science fiction just 5 years ago. Where can you find practical solutions for your technology needs? We recommend: With articles on choosing software, blogs on social media best practices, and spot-on webinars, Techsoup is indispensable. Nonprofit or public library members can get access to donations and discounts from more than 60 donor partners, including Microsoft, Adobe, Cisco, Intuit, and Symantec (eligibility requirements apply). The Nonprofit Technology Network organizes an annual conference, a very helpful newsletter, research reports, and online courses that lead to a certificate. The organization also sponsors local and virtual groups dedicated to project management, IT, digital communications, community building, and more. Online magazine with business, culture, transportation sections and more. Pretty technical and high-flying, but a good place for software and hardware reviews.

Accounting The Nonprofit Financial Group is a volunteer led organization with a mission to encourage and educate nonprofit financial leaders. It supports networking, education, and professional development for financial managers with monthly meetings and a community forum.  North Star NP owner Mike Schak has been a long-time member of this group. As always, the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits is a wonderful resource. They host an annual Finance Conference. The National Council of Nonprofits produces and curates tools, resources, and samples for nonprofits in areas such as financial management, accountability, ethics, and tax exemption. They also monitor policy issues and advocate for the sector.

Your accounting software company. Blackbaud, Quickbooks, Sage, all have guides, blogs, webinars and more.

Human Resources The Society for Human Resource Management is a national membership organization, but many of its resources are available to nonmembers.

Your insurance agency. Many health insurance and business insurance agencies have HR resources, including seminars and articles. They are interested in customers being having good HR practices in order to reduce risk of claims.


I used to purchase awards and engravings from a company with a musty, dusty office, analog phones, paper files, and curtains from the 1950s. No surprise—they are out of business. The demand for their products remains, but the marketplace requires efficiency.

If you need efficient assistance with technology, accounting or human resources, contact North Star NP today.


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