One of my core principles in life has always been “stick with your strengths.” I further define this as “hire the right people to do the things you don’t know how to do, want to do, or have time to do.” The results will be better and ultimately more efficient.
This principle was reinforced when Zuri Group was selected by the State of Oregon for an employment audit. The audit was a routine compliance audit, rather than one initiated in response to a complaint. However, an audit is an audit and no one like receiving that letter.
My first action was to contact Zuri Group’s legal and accounting firms. For them, this is routine. Our lawyer mapped out a plan and our accountants pulled the necessary reports. The auditor reviewed and ultimately complimented our record keeping, saying that everything “looked great.” Audit completed with no problems! I credit this success to the fact that Zuri Group does not try to do things that are outside of our core expertise. We leave those things to other experts.
Since Zuri Group’s founding 10 years ago, we have used specialists in law, accounting, and payroll to ensure our business was conducted properly. As our business has grown we have expanded our partnerships to include organizations that help in other, unique ways. We feel these partners make us a better company and I share their services below.
I hope you find these profiles helpful, either for the services offered or as examples of sticking with our strengths. In alphabetical order:
I speak from experience when I say that when a professional services company tries to do its own website and branding, it never gets done. Zuri Group spends all available time focusing on clients and we do not make time for ourselves. Enter Blue Flame — in their words, a creative global Brand Activation and Production Company. We have partnered in the past to help clients and now we are the client. We hope you enjoy our new website.
The nonprofit industry is a small world. I have known Mike Matchett, founder of CoAction, for over ten years. Not only did he give us the opportunity to develop his new WordPress website and Salesforce integration, he has allowed us to be in on the ground floor of his exciting purchasing community. CoAction makes group discounts available to nonprofit members, so we save money on our everyday purchases, including FedEx and more.
When Zuri Group was looking to develop a peer-to-peer tool, we did not want to reinvent the wheel for things like CRM, email marketing, advocacy tools, and transaction processing. Engaging Networks has all of that and more, including international enterprise nonprofit clients and a proven track record. The result is ZEN Solutions: a Zuri – Engaging Networks partnership that provides a world-class peer to peer experience to our growing client list.
Zuri Group in the early years was driven by personal relationships and personal interaction. Everyone felt comfortable contacting me directly and that was effective to manage our work. As we have grown, this is no longer possible. As much as we foster a culture of openness and collaboration, we also need tools to share information. We chose Khorus to open channels of communication from the newest hire through to the CEO. Khorus captures Zuri’s strategic goals and relates these to each staff person’s individual goals. Staff check in weekly to report their progress and offer feedback on all priorities, from client projects to work-life balance and professional development. I review status weekly with senior managers, which provides insights on both clients and staff. We have found Khorus to be a valuable tool and can easily envision how other organizations can use it to demonstrate to boards and donors how they are progressing with programs and strategic goals.
I hope this helps you to be more focused and successful. If you have questions or comments don’t hesitate to contact us, we would be happy to discuss.
John is an innovative leader and strategic thinker with over 30 years of experience and more than a decade in the nonprofit technology arena. John founded Zuri Group in 2007 with the knowledge that nonprofit organizations are most successful when they have trusted partners in technology on the team.