About Us

Get a behind-the-scenes look at Team Merit!

About the Merit Nonprofit Professional Development learning platform

  • Who is Merit for?

    Merit is for the entire nonprofit staff team, including part-timers, seasonal staff, new, seasoned, client-serving, back office, interns, those readying for retirement, and everyone in between. Because this platform is designed to increase and enhance the total performance of your nonprofit, we encourage our nonprofit partners to encourage every staff member to use it.

    Our learning content is presented in formats suitable for all learners, including those who prefer or require video, audio-only, written, and closed-captioning.

  • What will we learn on the Merit Nonprofit Professional Development platform?

    View Merit's learning paths here.

    The Merit platform builds up 6 core nonprofit proficiency areas: leading, learning, resource generating, planning, managing, and overseeing. Within each of these, we look at a number of capacity areas.

    Leading proficiency: community leadership and mission-focused leadership.

    Learning proficiency:advocacy success, environmental context, staff performance assessment, organizational capacity, population needs, and program success.

    Resource Generating proficiency: board fundraising, grantmaker relationships, donor cultivation, marketing, partnership, and staff fundraising.

    Planning proficiency: decision-making and strategic planning.

    Managing proficiency: community collaboration, facilities, program implementation, staff deployment, staff professional development, staff recruitment and retention, technology, and volunteer engagement.

    Overseeing proficiency: financial oversight, impact accountability, and implementation accountability.

  • Where did these topics come from?

    Merit maps directly to the 27 capacities measured by the Impact Capacity Assessment Tool. This industry-standard capacity assessment is included in select Merit packages.

  • Who is behind Merit?

    Merit is the signature product offered by the Nonprofit Help Center, which was founded in 2018 by Dr. Emilie Socash, long-time nonprofit veteran and organizational and leadership psychologist.

    Badge incentives and play elements of Merit were developed under the oversight of Dr. Kristen Toohill, author of "All Work and Some Play: The Scientific Case for Playing Games at Work" and happiness consultant with Happy Brain Science.

    Capacity area advising was provided by Sally Munemitsu, developer of the Impact Capacity Assessment Tool and co-founder of Algorhythm.

    Dozens of nonprofit executive directors and leaders provided insight and input into the content, format, and product that has ultimately become Merit. These leaders represent children's museums, refugee support organizations, food banks, health centers, arts organizations, children's advocacy initiatives, and much more.

  • What is Merit?

    Merit is an anytime, anywhere microlearning platform just for nonprofit professionals that provides an engaging and easy way to build the capacity of the person and the organization. Learners earn badges on any of our 28 learning paths as they watch videos, complete interactive workbook exercises, take quizzes, and create personal learning plans. Leaders can see team engagement, host their own organization's training content, and work with us on performing a capacity assessment. Everyone can dive in on our community feature as well to connect with learners across North America!

  • How do nonprofits get the most out of Merit?

    Our clients continue to wow us with the creative ways they use Merit. Here are just a few examples of how Merit is supporting their entire professional development approach:

    Hosting new-hire orientation trainings
    Linking to required certification trainings
    Embedding their org calendar
    "Assigning" topics as part of regular supervision
    Spring-boarding from Merit topics to host monthly lunch-and-learns.
    Sharing selected lessons with board members
    Informal learning buddy programs
    ...and much more!