LEADING QUESTIONS: Literacy leader pens success story

May 19, 2010

Welcome back to IBJ’s new video feature, “Leading Questions: Wisdom from the Corner Office.” Every week, we sit down with one of central Indiana’s top bosses and talk shop about the characteristics of an effective head honcho.

Travis DiNicola, executive director of the not-for-profit literacy group Indy Reads, is a big believer in the value of failures, including his own. With a small staff and limited budget, he encourages employees to act like entrepreneurs and take calculated risks in order to keep the organization moving forward. Such trial and error is often the author of later success, he says. In the video below, DiNicola explains how one of his own ideas floundered, and how honest evaluations from his staff led to a happy outcome.

Like many not-for-profits, Indy Reads found that funding began to evaporate during the recession. In the video below, DiNicola describes how the group devised a particularly nimble strategy for dealing with possible budget shortfalls, and why individual donors and high-profile events have become much more important for fundraising.


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