Five Good Ideas

Five Good Ideas about impactful communication on a shoestring budget

Published on 16/05/2017

How can you make a more memorable impact on your partners, funders, and broad stakeholder network? Time and time again, organizations doing important work forget about one key puzzle piece of driving change: effective communication tactics. For non-profit leaders, communicating is essential to building strong partnerships, which is often done on a shoestring budget. Under this kind of pressure, it can be easy to skip over the more meaningful ways of connecting with others. In this presentation, CivicAction CEO Sevaun Palvetzian will toast to five good ideas she’s picked up on how non-profit leaders can communicate effectively with stakeholders and not break the bank.

Five Good Ideas:

  1. Data is your seatbelt, but stories put you in the driver’s seat.
  2. Pick coffee over the computer.
  3. All the news that’s fit to print, not (only) scroll.
  4. Invite yourself to a pithy party. Regularly.
  5. Never underestimate the impact of gift wrap.


  1. What Writing Speeches for Michelle Obama Taught Sarah Hurwitz about Great Storytelling
  2. Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die, Chip Heath and Dan Heath
  3. Start With Why, Simon Sinek
  4. Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery, Garr Reynolds
  5. Pexels—free stock photography

Sevaun Palvetzian

Chief Executive Officer, CivicAction

Sevaun Palvetzian has been CEO at CivicAction since January of 2014. Under her leadership, the organization has launched the CivicAction Leadership Foundation and two new initiatives focused on youth unemployment and mental health in the workplace. Before CivicAction, Sevaun held several senior executive roles within the Ontario Government where she championed the next generation of leaders launching the Youth and New Professional Secretariat – a government-wide strategy to attract and retain future generations of leaders which included launching the award-winning Learn and Work Program for at-risk youth. Prior to her work in government, Sevaun held positions at the University of Toronto, the World Bank Group, and Presidential Classroom, a Washington D.C.- based civic education organization. Sevaun frequently contributes to city-building efforts including serving as a member of the Premier’s Community Hubs Advisory Group, The Toronto Police Service Board Transformational Task Force, and as a member of Mayor John Tory’s Advisory Panel for International Hosting Opportunities. She also sits on the Board of Directors for Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC), NPower Canada, and Waterfront Toronto, and is a member of Ivey Business School Leadership Council. She completed the Ivey Executive Program at the Ivey School of Business and has an M.A. in history from the University of Western Ontario.