Category: Chronicling Corona

What to join? Co-working space, meetup or traditional association?

Associations used to be the place to go for ongoing professional development and engaging conversations with colleagues in your field. That is no longer the case as members use free, open-source alternatives such as webinars, online courses, and LinkedIn video content. Co-working spaces and meetups are ever-present substitutes for busy people seeking connections on terms. Associations can distinguish themselves by focusing on the credibility and brand of their offerings and highlighting their high-touch, in-person interactions.

Your members have more options than ever. Engage in ways that are meaningful to them.

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Welcome to the future. Today’s 4-year-old will be the parent of 2040.

Photo by Giu Vicente on Unsplash

Karla Raines of Corona will be joined by her friend Gretchen Kerr, COO of the  Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus to chat about the power of a 20-year visioning horizon. The Museum’s new 2030 Master Plan used a long horizon to leap over the usual constraints of shorter-term thinking. Moon colonization? Autonomous vehicles? Yes and yes.

Using a case study approach, we will share the advantages of a longer horizon, discuss the essential topics to explore, and share how your scan can illuminate possibilities you hadn’t envisioned as you build buy-in for an exciting future.

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Staff Interview: Beth Mulligan

The world was changing in 2006.  Pluto was downgraded from planet status to dwarf planet.  Google purchased YouTube to expand their empire.  Barry Bonds hit his 715th (asterisked) home run to pass Babe Ruth on the all-time list.  And Beth Mulligan, a newly minted PhD psychologist at the University of Colorado, was considering her career options.

Beth and Mylo

As an academic, she was interested in moving to a job that had practical application in the world, and that had an emphasis on making the world a better place.  A friend from graduate school was working at Corona Insights (then, Corona Research) and let her know we were hiring. She was intrigued by our mission and the variety of work that we do.  She won the job and has been a Corona-ite ever since, rising through the ranks from an associate position all the way up to principal.  She is now one of the most senior people at Corona Insights, leading our evaluation practice.  She also participates in many other types of projects, providing in-house expertise in statistical techniques and research methodologies.

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What’s your Story?

We all love a good story. There is increasing evidence that storytelling is one of the most effective ways to communicate information that will be retained by an audience. An analysis of the 500 most popular TED talks demonstrated that more than 65% of the content was storytelling. The ability to communicate a clear and emotionally resonant narrative of impact is essential for nonprofits and purpose driven organizations.

Photo by Nong Vang on Unsplash

Three of Corona’s associates will take you past the buzzword of storytelling and breakdown what makes for an effective impact narrative. You will learn how tools of strategy, qualitative research, and quantitative analysis can help your organization share the story of why you matter.

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Swat that SWOT. She said what?

Photo by Astrid Greif on Unsplash

SWOT analysis, one of the most prevalent tools in strategic planning, is in dire need of an update. Can you name another tool that hasn’t evolved in 50 years? To put it in perspective, it is akin to using a rotary dial phone in the age of the tech-enabled smart phone.

Karla Raines, Corona’s strategy guru, will share four notable shortcomings in the existing approach and highlight innovative alternatives that will position nonprofits to make the most of their next strategic analysis. Once you understand the shortcomings you will be primed to consider alternatives, including how to optimize your next SWOT.

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Taking a Leap Together: Knowledge Leads to Bold Action and Dramatic Results

We sat down recently with Mike Yankovich, Gretchen Kerr, and Amy Burt of the Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus to reflect on our work together.  We asked them to take us back to the beginning.  

Twelve years ago, our hero’s journey began, as many do, with a quest for knowledge. Feeling a bit like the cartoon character “Underdog,” the Museum knew they had potential to make a more notable impact on the community yet weren’t quite sure how to get there. The facility was a bit too crowded—a theme that would emerge again in later years. Their search for answers led them to Corona Insights, as the Museum endeavored to gather customer insights to determine how to make the most of the available space, enhance quality, and solidify their reputation.

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Bikes Together: Transforming Communities Through Bicycle Access And Education

In honor of Corona’s 20th anniversary, we are celebrating the outstanding people and organizations making a positive contribution to our community.

Each month, Corona is making a $500 donation in honor of a member of our team. For August, Jamie Blair selected the Bikes Together. We chatted with Jam to learn more about this organization and her relationship with them.

Bikes Together is a nonprofit bike shop with the primary goal of getting more people on bikes—particularly kids who might otherwise find it difficult to buy and maintain a bike. The organization helps to provide low- or no-cost bicycles to those who need them by taking in bikes in need of repair or refurbishment, then giving them new life. In addition, bike owners can come to Bikes Together and use their shop and tools to repair their bike (for free). The organization even has volunteers in the shop to help people learn about bicycle maintenance and assist with repairs. In addition, the organization provides a wide variety of classes and summer camps to help both kids and adults learn about bicycles, with topics ranging from maintenance, to safety, to communication and teamwork, and much more.

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Staff Interview: Jamie Blair

This entry in our blog series is submitted with a bit of sadness, as Jamie Blair, our office coordinator for the past two years, will be moving to Hawaii in October, and therefore will be moving on from the Corona team. Even so, we like to think of the Corona alumni network like distant members of the family, so her departure is no reason not to learn a bit more about her anyway!

A sample of Jam’s art.

Jamie (who tends to prefer the simpler “Jam”) came to Corona on Halloween of 2017. I wanted to make some clever joke here about that somehow foreshadowing her time at Corona, but to the contrary, her time at Corona has been a delight for all of us. Jam came to us with a background in bookkeeping and social work, making her a perfect fit to run “Mission Control” here in the office as someone who understands our passion for working with purpose-driven organizations.

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I love everything about Corona

Corona Insights is thrilled to announce the promotion of Andrew Streight to Senior Associate. Andrew delights in everything Corona – from facilitating planning sessions, to collaborating with colleagues and delivering impactful reports. He especially enjoys the multi-faceted talents and diversity of expertise at Corona. “We knew Andrew was a fit when we first met him,” remarked Karla Raines, CEO. “Our clients adore Andrew for his warmth, can-do attitude, commitment to their success, and relentless quest for excellence.”

Congratulations Andrew! We can’t wait to see where your career takes you.

Andrew bouldering. Not part of work.

Check out Andrew’s recent staff highlight as part of our 20th Anniversary here.

Information to empower Colorado’s cities and towns

Empowered cities and towns, united for a strong Colorado.

That’s the vision for Colorado Municipal League (CML), a member organization and long-time client of Corona Insights, that provides services, resources, and advocacy on behalf of Colorado municipalities, big and small. And one resource they provide to empower members is research.

I recently sat down with Kevin Bommer, Executive Director, and Melissa Mata, Municipal Research Analyst, to catch up and learn about how they’re using data and research to benefit their members.

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