Special 2016 “Alan Harrison’s Birthday” Edition: Pack Up the Babies and Grab the Old Ladies – And an Easy-To-Fulfill Wish List
I was born on May 14. Conceived on a hot August night. Neil Diamond would’ve been proud. He was old enough to have a kid then, so…who knows? Brother Love? Are you my papa?
From him, I want flowers.
From you, I want (this is your cue):
- A 137-word card. ( <–Yes, that’s a link.)
- Share your favorite 137 Words post with your social network (that’s “share,” not “like”).
- To join a great company with a great mission. In Seattle.
- Health for The Kid.
- Guidance for The Kid.
- The love of my life to be happy, fulfilled, and curious. You know who you are.
- The ability for you to guide your favorite nonprofit to safety, security, and success.
- Brilliantly measurable missions, better than you believe you’re capable of.
- Complete, successful execution of those brilliant new missions.
- Pie, not cake.
Don’t own your own performance space. It’s a liability, not an asset. Balance sheet be damned.
An asset is something you can sell. No one wants to buy a theatre…unless it’s to tear it down. And if it’s an Historic Building, run like the wind.
This isn’t just avoiding an “Edifice Complex.” Unless, of course, you adore unending capital campaigns to rebuild the defects your company “cheaped out” on. Find funding for what you do, not where you do it.
That said, one of the most overlooked ways in which a board member can help an organization is to provide eternal, free nearby office space for the company (there’s never enough inside the theatre). It’s a major tax deduction and the perfect in-kind gift – one that actually removes a necessary expense from the budget.
Watching arts nonprofits seek funding in unusual ways leads to same old/new discussions on Unrelated Business Income Tax.
Taking a group of donors for a London theatre tour (even if all the finances are handled by an independent agent)…UBIT, you betcha.
The percentage of time spent in London at a lecture about your company’s particular brand of theatre…OK.
Selling t-shirts with just the logo of your natural history museum…UBIT, you betcha.
Selling t-shirts with dinosaurs on them at your natural history museum…OK.
Leasing part of your building to a separate business…UBIT, you betcha.
Items sold at a gift shop with a separate public entrance…UBIT off more than you can chew.
Items sold at a gift shop only accessible to ticket-buyers…UBIT only items not related to the tax-exempt purpose of the organization.
UBIT. Not just another 4-letter acronym.