How Research-Driven Organizations Become Thought Leaders

Tuesday Thought Leadership Teardown

Take Your Gloves Off

Every Tuesday, I do a TTLT — Tuesday Thought Leadership Teardown — for my mailing list. Here’s my latest.

Evidence or expertise alone don’t make your ideas compelling.

You make them compelling.

“You” meaning: your voice. Your style, coupled with a strong argument and point of view.…

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Tuesday TL Teardown: Saying No

Why do we say “yes” to doing things that aren’t in our best interest?

If you have this problem, you’re not alone: Almost everyone finds it difficult to say no when authority figures ask them for something — even when they’ve been advised they can refuse the request.…

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Tuesday Thought Leadership Teardown: Not Just Whys, But the Why

What’s going on at the NRA?

Brian Mittendorf, an accounting professor at Ohio State who studies the finances of nonprofits and has been looking at the NRA’s tax filings, says he knows. His new piece in The Conversation, “Financial woes are at the heart of the NRA’s tumult,” argues the organization’s current internal conflict — marked by high-level resignations, accusations of extortion, looming insolvency and now a criminal investigation — is “the culmination of years of financial problems”:

  • Routine deficit spending;
  • Borrowing from its own foundation; offering discounted, multiyear memberships; and underfunding its pension plan — all tactics designed to boost short-term revenue at the expense of the long-term;
  • Having an enormous board of directors (76 people!); and
  • Signing sweetheart deals with an ad agency and a telemarketing fundraiser — the latter which kept 50 percent of all the money it raised for the organization in 2017.
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Tuesday Thought Leadership Teardown: A Map is Just a Map

“Everyone” is not an audience: the first platitude of communications.

An important variation on this “everyone” theme: “x, y, z, and anyone else who….”

Effective research communication requires making choices — immediately — about who your audiences are, and then understanding which messages and products will give them exactly what they need to make a decision.…

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