RADIANCE BLOG

Category: Chronicling Corona

Welcome, Caitlin!

We are delighted to introduce our newest Associate, Caitlin McAteer

Caitlin and W.

Caitlin specializes in evaluation and strategic planning, and has hit the ground running at Corona, already providing insight and analysis on a variety of projects spanning our market research, evaluation, and strategy practices. She brings to our team a deep well of training and experience in helping mission-driven organizations use data to guide and strengthen their work. She holds a master’s degree in Public Service as well as a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and Math. We know she will be a great resource for our clients and we’re thrilled to add her to our team!

See our staff pages to learn more about Caitlin and the rest of our Corona team!


Arts & culture: What do Coloradans want to know? [Event]

On November 8th, come to the Colorado History Center and hear Corona Insights and our friends at the Colorado Media Project talk about the intersection of arts and information:  how people participate in the arts, how they find out about things to do, and other interesting things about the news media as it relates to arts and culture.

Speakers will include:

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Ginny Sawyer: Community Builder and Problem Solver

I recently met with Ginny Sawyer, Project and Policy Manager with the City of Fort Collins, to discuss the long view of Corona’s involvement in three city-wide housing studies.

Two words that describe Ginny Sawyer’s career so far are problems and solving. In her 19-years serving the citizens of Fort Collins as a City employee, Ginny has worked on solving an interesting array of issues including nuisance codes, retail marijuana, tax initiatives, and short-term rental housing, just to name a few. Ginny recognizes that these issues are complex, but also understands that they can be deeply personal and have a major impact on residents’ quality of life. Therefore, she takes a human-centered approach by seeking resident voices and sincerely working with stakeholders to find broad and lasting solutions.

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My Pit Bull is Family

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 October, Beth Mulligan selected My Pit Bull is Family. We chatted with Beth to learn more about this organization and her relationship with them.

What is special about My Pit Bull is Family?

“My Pit Bull Is Family” is a Minneapolis-based nonprofit organization that serves as a resource to families with pit bulls. Solely due to their dog’s breed, these families often face challenges finding rental housing and other services such as rental insurance.

Founded in 2011, the organization was started with the goal of promoting inclusive pet polices to end breed-specific discrimination in housing and insurance. The effort has grown to include the nation’s largest database of rentals that includes all dog breeds, which is growing continually through the organization’s ongoing work. By providing this resource and also insurance resources, the organization seeks to minimize or eliminate the number of pit bulls that are surrendered by families due to an inability to find suitable housing.

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Look beyond the financial transaction

Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash

Younger association members know what they want, and they have specific preferences for membership associations. Millennials are generally a tech-savvy and frugal group who value work/life balance, personal fulfillment, and connection. They want a clear sense of the benefits of being a member, something they generally don’t feel they are getting now. Mission impact and community service are significant deciding factors for Millennials and Gen Z. Career-focused messaging, personalization, and á la carte pricing are the most effective ways to connect with young members. Gen X and Boomer members expect the same. 

Connection and fulfillment are universal desires for members today, from memberships in trade associations to cultural institutions.  According to trend tracker Colleen Dilenschneider, “Supporting the organization’s mission matters a lot – mission-motivated members are more likely to buy higher-level memberships, renew their memberships, and find greater value for cost in those higher memberships that they are purchasing. A problem, however, is that not all cultural organizations recognize the importance of highlighting these benefits and instead focus almost exclusively on transaction-based benefits.”

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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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