Continuing Ed

Three Ways to Use NVI's New PsychArmor Courses

This week, we’re excited to release TWO new courses developed in partnership with PsychArmor Institute. “What is a Backbone Organization and What is its Role?” and “Why Collaboration is So Important in Serving Military, Veterans, their Families, and Caregivers” are part of our “Communities Serving Veterans” school. We’ve got some suggestions for how you can use them:

1) Sneak a little learning into your day

You know that mid afternoon slump? You’ve been sitting all day, you’re starting to feel a little sleepy, and your vision is going fuzzy after poring over grant requirements…you need a break. The old adage says that change is as good as a rest, right? This is the perfect moment to hit “play” on one of our PsychArmor courses. Our courses are quick, thought-provoking, and (mostly) 10 minutes or less. While you watch, take the opportunity to step away from your keyboard—all that’s required is your attention. Stretch, move, or enjoy a few deep breaths. When you finish your break, you’ll be refreshed, informed, and hopefully inspired.

2) Screen them as a collaborative

Your collaborators are busy, and work really hard at their “day jobs.” There’s not always a lot leftover—energy, brainpower, or time—to think about the process of collaboration.  If there’s a collective impact concept you want to implement, you’ll need buy-in, which requires understanding. Our PsychArmor courses can be used as tools to illustrate these concepts. Perhaps you can earmark 10-15 minutes for your collaborative to screen an appropriate course together.

Take, for instance, backbone organizations. Backbones serve a complex set of roles in a collective impact effort, and aren’t really meant to be self-appointed. But a collective impact effort can’t select a backbone without understanding the roles it plays. Collaborative leaders can share this video, narrated by Mayor Andy Ryder of Lacey, Washington. Screening it together offers an opportunity to develop a shared vocabulary, and begin a conversation around formalizing a backbone.

3) Share them with leaders in your community

You’ve got a core group of dedicated collaborators, but there’s a dream-partner out there that you’d love to engage in your work. Maybe it’s the mayor. Maybe it’s the head of the chamber of commerce, or the COO of the biggest employer in your community, or the nonprofit whose new grant has some overlap with the veterans you serve.

Whether you’re following up from an in-person meeting or impromptu business card swap, or cold-emailing this prospective partner to introduce yourself, a couple of our videos can help provide context for your work. Here’s an example:

“Dear Ichabod,

We exchanged business cards today at the library ribbon-cutting, and I wanted to take a moment to follow up. It was a pleasure connecting with you briefly and learning about your passion for financial literacy.

I’m a member of the Sleepy Hollow Veterans Alliance. We bring together community leaders from the public, private, and independent sectors who collaborate to find systemic solutions for issues faced by veterans in Sleepy Hollow. We believe that what benefits veteran families also benefits the community. This short video by NVI and PsychArmor Institute explains why.

Please consider joining us at our next monthly meeting! We get together Tuesday, May 7th from 2-3 PM at the community center. You can learn more about what we are working on, and how Crane & Associates can get involved.

Thank you,

Katrina”