The Problem With Nonprofits 7: Professionalization

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TLDR: Professionals don’t fart or burp.

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Pt0 – The Problem With Nonprofits Trailer/Intro

Pt1 – The Nonprofit Industrial Complex:

Pt2 – Nonprofit Hospitals and Universities

Pt3 – Capitalist Workplace Structures:

Pt4 – Good Allies! (To Inequality)

Pt5 – Social Service Not Social Change

Pt6 – Movement Capture

Pt7 – Professionalization

Pt8 – Success Stories
Pt9 – The Criminalization And Medicalization Of Violence

Videos leading up to this series:

What Is A Nonprofit?


A History Of Nonprofit Corporatization


Bill Gates: King Of Neoliberalism (Nonprofit Series)


Dunking On The National Council of Nonprofits!


References/influences:

Culture of Professionalism: The Middle Class and the Development of Higher Education in America


Tips on Professionalism [BE A WORKPLACE STANDOUT]


How to Be More Professional at Work


How to Be Both:Negotiating Professionalism and Activism in the Nonprofit Sector

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19 comments

  1. These points after 7:30 are particularly hard-hitting. I hear non profit workers all the time talking like “how are you going to get the best workers (and biggest impact) without paying top dollar?” It’s so corporate. Are you going to focus on family foundations at some point?

  2. just don’t look at the screen when the professional people are talking at you. that was such a bad editing idea, sorry.

  3. You mention seminars for supposed further qualification to “maintain your professional status”, which cost so much that a “normal” wage wouldn’t suffice.
    I know some one who is working in the health sector for a quarter century now and over the years has attended many seminars and symposia for further education and to stay up-to-date on their branch of medicine.
    In -the latter- this case I imagine such events to be actually useful, even necessary, to do the respective work.
    So what are these seminars for professional non-profit workers about?
    You do suppose that they are, so to say, bullshit seminars, don’t you?

  4. Thanks for doing this series, it’s really accessible, well researched and thoughtful. Frankly, there is probably no truly ethical workplace or industry in this economic system and you make that very clear.

    And, oh no! The horror! Can you just imagine someone bringing their lunch in a PAPER BAG of all things? How disgustingly plebian!

    Corporate culture is absolute garbage.

  5. Hey Al, go rhythm!

    But seriously, great series. I’ve learned a lot, and I’m sure others have as well.

  6. If the term “social sector” is adopted for what we now mostly call the “non-profit sector”, what’s its counterpart for referring to the for-profit sector? Is it the commercial sector?

  7. Advice for People of Color who want to become professional: Practice your white Voice! 😅
    Thanks for the great content man!

  8. When I was little I once asked my mom the difference between for-profits and non-profits and she said and I quote, ‘taxes’.

  9. Your picture example for “nudity is unprofessional” at about 2 min 30 secs, aren’t they children.. ?

    Anywho.. really enjoying the series man 😊

  10. greetings Slice

    you might be interested in this timestamp on the latest TED video with Bill Gates:

    it’s about his views on philanthropy’s “financial capacity”

  11. The issue of non-profit wages (as distinct from salaries) is a complex one. I played a key role in organizing a union at Saskatoon Open Door Society because the substantially refugee and immigrant employees were increasingly frustrated with job insecurity, arbitrary treatment and wages much lower than those performing similar functions in government. I was fired for that, and the longtime Executive Director resigned over the order to rehire me. When I then headed the union local, a further ED repeatedly tried to insist that since Open Door was a charity, employees should be happy to work for less.

    Workers for non-profits – who often work very hard, and under trying conditions – deserve union representation and the decent working conditions and wages that usually come with it. Non-profit CEOs and upper management can be quite another matter.