By Tiffany Rucker, MBA

It’s important as a leader to take a step back and remember that employees are people with thoughts, emotions and value systems that make each of them unique. Sometimes the people who work with us deal with heavy personal issues that can affect their ability to focus and perform.

If you want to be an exceptional leader, be sure you take time to check in with your team’s mental health — because they’ll only truly thrive in an environment where they feel safe and appreciated.

One of the ways that you can check-in with staff is…

By Hope Villages of America President & CEO Kirk Ray Smith, BHS, MHS

I’ve yet to meet a single person who does not want to be happy, or at least achieve some degree of happiness. We all like being happy and experiencing feelings of joy and satisfaction; it is good for the soul.

Happiness can be deceptive, however. It can fool us into believing it’s permanent. Happiness can cause us to forget how to handle tough situations and navigate through adversity or difficult days. If we’re not careful, happiness can also lead to complacency by making us too comfortable.


According to, the average age of colon cancer diagnosis in men is 68 years old, while 72 for women. While colon cancer is more common in older adults aged 50 and over, it can occur at any age.

Colon cancer is highly treatable if caught early enough. The symptoms of colon cancer don’t often appear until cancer has advanced. Therefore, it’s essential to regularly get screened for colon cancer to avoid reaching a stage when symptoms become evident and the cancer has progressed. Here are the risk factors to be aware of and the signs to look out for:

Risk Factors

By Communicare

According to the 2020 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 20.5 million people misused prescription drugs in 2019, including pain relievers, stimulants, tranquilizers and sedatives. You may be surprised to learn that the majority of those surveyed obtained these prescription drugs from their family or friends’ medicine cabinets.

This easy access to prescription drugs increases the potential for misuse, overdose or poisoning, especially if the medication should have been disposed of because it is expired or potentially addictive.

Because of these dangerous and potentially life-threatening consequences of unsafe prescription drug storage and disposal, the Drug Enforcement Administration…

By Jackie Sue Griffin, JSG & Associates

Self-assessments by your nonprofit board supports the whole as well as its parts: Not only can each member effectively determine and address their weaknesses, but the group is empowered to acknowledge knowledge, skill or other gaps and determine their desired solutions.

Periodic self-assessment builds accountability into your nonprofit board and has many benefits, including:

Setting Member Expectations

Individual members and the group as a whole must understand what is expected from them. It is leadership’s job to provide them with concise and specific information that includes what the nonprofit organization stands for, its mission, cause, and…

By Jackie Sue Griffin, JSG & Associates

A difficult board can cause your nonprofit a number of headaches, from annoyances like slowing the work and meddling in day-to-day operations to full-blown migraines like damaging the brand and reputation.

Here are a few fixes:

  1. As the organization’s executive leader, you must be assertive about maintaining focus on the mission. You’re the constant role model, aligned to the organizational morals and values in place from the very beginning. Oftentimes organizational failure can be traced to the moment the board begins to wander from the beliefs that built the company.
  2. Implement firmly set…

By Communicare

Our family relationships provide the foundation for communication, attachment, self-worth and boundaries. The bonds we maintain with family members become our maps for how we treat others and interact.

In an ideal world, all children would grow up in supportive family environments that help them gain confidence, feel valuable and develop strong connections with others. However, this isn’t always the case as different family dynamics exist, and some have unhealthy relationship patterns.

Examples of Toxic Family Behavior

● Emotional and psychological abuse

● Physical violence

● Actions or language that aim to belittle your choices

● Attacks intended to hit your vulnerable points

By Communicare

Positive family dynamics are crucial to helping families resolve conflict, work through life’s challenges, communicate effectively and work as a team.

Children that grow up in families that empathize with one another, show affection and respect one another’s boundaries grow up to be more confident to explore the world and build healthy relationships of their own. However, it’s never too late to improve family relationships.

Even families that have gone through challenges and felt the impact of poor family relationships can heal by finding ways to strengthen family bonds. Today’s families are busier than ever before. …

By Jackie Sue Griffin, JSG & Associates

If your board members are missing meetings, they’re telling you something is wrong. One quick fix is to make sure board meetings are as streamlined as productive as possible.

Here are simple steps for keeping your board members engaged and your nonprofit operating smoothly:

1. Prepare the Agenda in Advance

Earlier is better. You can prepare the agenda weeks before the meeting and email it out for review. Members may be able to streamline the agenda — or bolster it with additional points they find important to share during the actual meeting. …

By Jackie Sue Griffin, JSG & Associates

Diversity in your nonprofit board members benefits your organization both financially and culturally. Let’s explore a few of the significant impacts of building a diverse and inclusive board and a few of our best tips on recruiting and retaining a true mix of members.

Positive Impacts of Board Diversity

Increased Productivity

A diverse board expands your organization’s talent pool, bringing different skill sets and talents together. This type of board tends to encourage open-mindedness, ignite creativity and drive innovation. The more varied your board’s perspectives and experiences, the more they will generate (positive) cognitive conflict and facilitate problem-solving…

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