25 episodes

The Five Good Ideas podcast rebroadcasts some of the best sessions of Maytree’s popular lunch-and-learn program.

For each session of Five Good Ideas, an expert from the non-profit or corporate sector shares five practical ideas on a key management issue facing non-profit organizations today.

You find sessions from the past season at https://maytree.com/five-good-ideas/.

Five Good Ideas Podcast Maytree Foundation

    • Business
    • 4.7 • 6 Ratings

The Five Good Ideas podcast rebroadcasts some of the best sessions of Maytree’s popular lunch-and-learn program.

For each session of Five Good Ideas, an expert from the non-profit or corporate sector shares five practical ideas on a key management issue facing non-profit organizations today.

You find sessions from the past season at https://maytree.com/five-good-ideas/.

    Five Good Ideas for greater governance – making bad boards better

    Five Good Ideas for greater governance – making bad boards better

    In this session, originally recorded on October 25, 2021, we asked Owen Charters, President & CEO of BGC Canada, to present his five good ideas about how a board can be better.
    They say strategy starts with the board, but is that really true, and should it be? Whether you’re an executive director or CEO (including an aspiring one), managing a board is a skill that’s rarely taught, yet vital to any senior non-profit leader. In this Five Good Ideas session with Owen Charters, find out how a board can be better. What should it focus on, and what should it ignore? Build a great board so that governance adds real value to you and your organization. Learn what and how to present issues to your board. Discover five good ideas (and a few bad ones to avoid) to keep your board on track, ensuring they are a partner in guiding your organization on the toughest decisions, and uncover whether they really should be the seat of organizational strategy.
    Five Good Ideas
    1. Guide and shape the work of the board in three key areas: policy, strategy, and generative governance; but remember, boards don’t DO strategy.
    2. Boards manage and evaluate CEOs; but CEOs need to take the initiative to shape this work.
    3. Boards should be diverse, but most importantly must be reflective of the community.
    4. Boards need to be engaged – committees, education programs, mission connection, and as alumni.
    5. Look to other sectors – there are good practices that we can emulate in the corporate sector around accountability and shaping the work of the board.

    Muttart Foundation – Board Development Workbooks
    Governance as Leadership: Reframing the Work of Nonprofit Boards. An excellent book by Dr. Richard Chait, Mr. William Ryan, and Ms. Barbara Taylor.
    Leading with Intent: BoardSource Index of Nonprofit Board Practices – access free and paid materials
    Deloitte – The Effective Not-for-Profit Board: A value-driving force
    Owen Charters’ article “Board Governance in Practice” (chapter 8) in Intersections and Innovations: Change for Canada’s Voluntary and Nonprofit Sector, published by the Muttart Foundation and Carleton University

    About Owen Charters
    Owen Charters is CEO of BGC Canada (formerly Boys & Girls Clubs of Canada). He serves on the advisory board of Common Good, a retirement plan for nonprofit sector employees, the Advisory Committee for the School for Advanced Studies in the Arts and Humanities at Western University, and the board of the National Alliance for Children and Youth. Former Chair of Imagine Canada and the Human Resources Council on the Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector, Owen is also faculty for the Social Sector Leadership MBA at York University’s Schulich School of Business. He is interested in pushing for a stronger nonprofit sector voice in Canadian policy, as well as better working conditions for sector employees.

    • 50 min
    Five Good Ideas about creating a successful hybrid workplace

    Five Good Ideas about creating a successful hybrid workplace

    In this session, originally recorded on September 28, 2021, we asked Neena Gupta, a partner at Gowling WLG (Canada) LLP, to present her five good ideas about creating a successful hybrid workplace.
    COVID-19 forced employers and employees to adapt to a virtual workplace. More than one and a half years into the pandemic, many employees don’t want to go back to the old ways of working, and employers are looking to find ways to create a hybrid workplace where their staff can work in the office as well as from home. Neena Gupta presents five good ideas about some of the legal, compliance, and HR issues you need to consider to make your hybrid workplace a true success.

    Download Neena’s presentation

    The podcast and transcript are provided for general information purposes only and are not legal advice. You should consult your own lawyer about your specific needs and requirements. © Gowling WLG (Canada) LLP.
    Five Good Ideas
    1. Survey your people
    2. Review your physical workspace
    3. Review your employee’s remote workspace
    4. Decide on your vaccination policy
    5. Draft your remote workplace policy
    Bonus ideas
    6. Re-SURVEY the workplace
    7. Invest in mental health
    8. Reconsider pay
    Examples of surveys


    Sue Bingham, “To Make Hybrid Work, Solicit Employees’ Input,” Harvard Business Review (July 29, 2021)
    Public Health Ontario, “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) Systems in Buildings and COVID-19”
    Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety, “Telework / Remote Work / Working From Home,” (fact sheet)
    City of Toronto news release, “Toronto Medical Officer of Health strongly recommending Toronto employers institute COVID-19 vaccination policy and support workplace vaccination”
    KPMG, “Work from home… work from office… or both? – A Hybrid Workplace guide to successfully build and manage a flexible future of work”
    Communitech, “Get back to work[space]!”
    Government of Ontario resource
    Government of Canada resources
    Gowling WLG

    COVID-19 Insights

    • 49 min
    Five Good Ideas to enhance your finance toolkit

    Five Good Ideas to enhance your finance toolkit

    In this session, originally recorded on June 15, 2021, we asked Jeff Szeto, Chief Financial Officer at Avana Capital Corporation and Maytree, to speak about his five good ideas to enhance your finance toolkit.
    For anyone working in a for-profit, non-profit, or charitable organization, it is critically important to have a robust finance and accounting team that can help them understand and leverage the financial aspects of their organization. This will help minimize risk but also support them – and their organization – in navigating and planning for the future. Using a practical and illustrative approach, and based on his experience in both non-profit and for-profit sectors, Jeff speaks on five good ideas to have in your finance toolkit that can help you build and maintain a strong financial foundation.
    Five Good Ideas
    1. Assess and improve operational efficiency2. Implement appropriate risk management3. Ensure you have business intelligence tools4. Be thoughtful about resource planning5. Integrate finance into the enterprise
    CPA Canada: Business and accounting resources – topical whitepapers on topics impacting finance and accounting professionals
    Deloitte Insights – whitepapers covering a range of highly current topics ranging from strategy, operations, technology to accounting, etc.
    WHO: Solve your #1 Problem – a guide to formulaic guide to hiring by Geoff Smart and Randy Street
    Gartner.com – the latest trending finance topics backed by experts and peers
    Mckinsey Special Collection: The Role of the CFO – a good article on the role of a CFO
    For the full transcript, visit https://maytree.com/five-good-ideas/five-good-ideas-to-build-your-finance-toolkit/
    About Jeff Szeto
    Jeff has over 15 years of extensive experience in leading, managing, and growing finance functions in high-growth entrepreneurial businesses. His background has seen him working in mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance for top-tier financial institutions, as well as serving as CFO of rapidly growing private companies. This diverse experience gives him the vision and leadership to scale high performing finance teams. In addition to his operating roles, he leads the direct investing group at ACS Ventures and plays an advisory role to many entrepreneurial ventures. He also serves as the CFO of Maytree, is currently the audit Chair of the TaddleCreek Family Health Team, and most recently was the previous CFO of Canada Learning Code, a high growth charity that is playing an instrumental role in designing, promoting, and delivering technology education across Canada.

    • 46 min
    Five Good Ideas for racial justice change-making

    Five Good Ideas for racial justice change-making

    In this session, originally recorded on March 25, 2021, we asked Lesa Francis, Avvy Go, Samya Hasan and Shalini Konanur to share five good ideas for racial justice change-making.
    How do we best address growing colour-coded inequality – for Indigenous peoples and peoples of colour, including Black Canadians? What are the institutional, structural, and systemic impacts of racism, faithism, and related inequality in education, housing, justice, health, and employment? How can individuals, groups, and organizations engage in effective trust-building, ally-ship, partnership development, and advocacy – to build on our successes, maintain hard-won gains, and bring about needed change? By highlighting examples of the real economic, health, and social impacts of racism and faithism, Lesa Francis, Avvy Go, Samya Hasan, and Shalini Konanur break down five good ideas for better “walking the talk” on racial equity and delivering more effectively on racial justice in Ontario.
    This Five Good Ideas session was organized in partnership with Colour of Poverty – Colour of Change.
    Five Good Ideas

    Collect disaggregated race-based (and other socio-demographic) data.
    Incorporate a racial equity and racial justice lens in the development and evaluation of policies, budgets, programs, practices, and cultures – both internally and externally.
    Adopt an intersectional approach to your anti-racism and racial equity and racial justice work and apply it in the hiring and promotion of staff, as well as in the recruitment of board members.
    Build effective ally-ship among and across peoples of colour, Indigenous Peoples, and others, as it is critical in the promotion of racial equity and racial justice in all of our partnership building and advocacy, within and across organizations, communities, and society.
    Lobby governments for systems level changes that promote racial equity and racial justice, and build internal organizational capacity to actively advocate for and support such change-making efforts.


    Colour of Poverty Fact Sheets (2019)
    Count Me In – Collecting Human Rights Based Data (OHRC) 
    COP-COC Disaggregated Data Collection Survey Tool-Template
    Measuring Health Equity – Demographic Data Collection in Health Care
    Employment Equity 101 (COP-COC)

    For the full transcript, visit https://maytree.com/five-good-ideas/five-good-ideas-for-racial-justice-change-making/
    About the presenters
    Lesa FrancisAt the date of the Five Good Ideas session (March 25, 2021), Lesa Francis was the Interim Executive Director at the Black Legal Action Centre, a specialty legal aid clinic in Ontario that works to develop access to justice and combat individual and systemic anti-Black racism.
    Avvy GoAt the date of the Five Good Ideas session (March 25, 2021), Avvy Go was the Clinic Director of the Chinese and Southeast Asian Legal Clinic and a founding steering committee member o

    • 47 min
    Five Good Ideas for demystifying digital transformation

    Five Good Ideas for demystifying digital transformation

    In this session, originally recorded on April 22, 2021, we asked Marina Glogovac, President & CEO of CanadaHelps, to share five good ideas for demystifying digital transformation.
    With a career spanning nearly three decades in technology and media (including working in the magazine industry during the shift to the internet), Marina knows the challenges that come from forced disruptions. She helps listeners understand what digital transformation actually means, and how to think about and approach this seemingly overwhelming task.
    Five Good Ideas

    Digital transformation is not about technology.
    You need the right technology, and integration is important.
    You need a clearly defined vision and to address four areas: Internal productivity, donor and customer process, culture and roles, and new service and revenue models.
    Change must be resourced.
    Go digital or go dark. A sense of urgency and ongoing commitment to digital transformation is critical for future survival and success.


    CanadaHelps’ Whitepapers on Digital Fundraising.
    CanadaHelps’ Webinars on Digital Fundraising.
    “Unlocking success in digital transformations.” McKinsey & Company.
    The Giving Report 2021: Faster Growth in Online Giving Crucial During Times of Crisis. CanadaHelps.
    The Technology Fallacy. How People Are the Real Key to Digital Transformation. By Gerald C. Kane, Anh Nguyen Phillips, Jonathan R. Copulsky and Garth R. Andrus.

    For the full transcript, visit https://maytree.com/five-good-ideas/demystifying-digital-transformation/
    About Marina Glogovac
    Marina Glogovac is President & CEO of CanadaHelps, a leader in providing fundraising and donation technology to charities and donors since 2000. She is passionate about charities and their essential role in Canada, and about building the capacity of the charitable sector through cutting-edge technology and high-quality education. Under her leadership since 2013, CanadaHelps has rapidly accelerated its growth trajectory, almost tripling the donations it facilitates for charities and dramatically expanding its offerings for both charities and donors.   Marina is an in-demand public speaker and panelist on the topics of digital transformation, social impact, innovation and disruption, and democratization of access to technology in the charitable sector. Marina regularly shares her perspective as a blogger for Huffington Post Canada, and is a past columnist for the Globe and Mail’s Leadership Lab.  Prior to joining CanadaHelps, Marina had a 25-year career in leading e-commerce, technology, and media companies, including as Chief Executive Officer and the Chief Revenue Officer at Lavalife Corp., Chief Marketing Officer at Kobo Inc., Chief Revenue Officer at Dealfind, and Group Publisher for St. Joseph’s Media, including their flag

    • 37 min
    Five Good Ideas about cultivating lasting relationships with media and journalists

    Five Good Ideas about cultivating lasting relationships with media and journalists

    In this session, originally recorded on February 25, 2021, we asked Royson James to share five good ideas about cultivating lasting relationships with media and journalists.
    How do you adopt a media mind and make it yours? At some point you may have gotten burned by media or just ignored. Since disengagement isn’t an option, how do you move on and germinate, nurture, and sustain lasting relationships? In this Five Good Ideas session, Royson James, the Toronto Star’s urban affairs columnist and former City Hall bureau chief, de-mystifies the media and talks about how journalists think so you know when, where, and how to engage them intelligently.
    Five Good Ideas

    Everybody gets screwed by the media. Knowing this prepares you for when your turn comes.
    “Fractured Journo World” is an opportunity masquerading as an obstacle.
    One hand washes the other – symbiosis sustains the system.
    Know your allies. They often stick out.
    Be the media junkie and benefit your organization.

    Related resource:

    Columbia Journalism Review: The voice of journalism since 1961. Gives critical analysis on the state of journalism.
    The Poynter Institute teaches, inspires, challenges, and creates a journalism idealism that builds confidence that someone is preoccupied with truth, context, and great witting.
    The Toronto Star: Your best media ally and friend in the GTA and in Ontario; most likely to be in synch with your goals for a healthy, caring, and equitable civil society.
    MediaSmarts: Canada’s centre for digital media literacy.
    The New Media Epidemic: The Undermining of Society, Family, and Our Own Soul by Jean-Claude Larchet. Podcast review of a book you may wish to read.

    For the full transcript, visit https://maytree.com/five-good-ideas/cultivating-relationships-with-media/
    About Royson James
    Royson James is the Toronto Star’s urban affairs columnist and former City Hall bureau chief, recognized throughout the region for his dogged reporting on the region’s governments, and on social justice. He’s a native of Jamaica who immigrated to Canada in 1969, attended Harbord Collegiate in downtown Toronto and had his journalistic training at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan. In 2004 he was named an honored alumnus of Andrews University.
    Royson is an active member of the Toronto West Seventh-day Adventist Church. He has directed the pathfinder club for kids 10 to 16. He also writes and produces an annual Easter Musical and dramatic presentations. The pathfinders, like Scouts but co-ed, plant an annual community garden and engage in community work.
    In 2013 he received Canada’s premier award for African Canadians – the Harry Jerome Award for media. In 2014 he was a finalist in the National Newspaper Award for columnist of a Canadian newspaper.
    Royson is married with four children.

    • 47 min

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