Meet the Expert
Principal and Partner, Helicon Collaborative
- Management consultant with 20 years working with nonprofit cultural organizations and foundations on strategy, program development and assessment.
- Program director for the arts at the James Irvine Foundation, commissioned groundbreaking research on cultural engagement and initiated innovative programs to boost cultural participation.
- Developed and managed the Knight Foundation's "Community Partners in Arts Access" program.
- Managed the Ford Foundation's $40 million "New Directions/New Donors for the Arts."
- Leadership positions at the James Irvine Foundation, TCC Group, Nonprofit Finance Fund and Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund. Conceived and launched funding initiatives in multiple areas, commissioned research, and conducted assessments of complex programs as well as individual organizations.
Session Packages from $500
Your Expert Package Includes:
- All 7 Best Practices
- Pre-Call Discovery Process
- One-on-One Call with Expert
- Session Summary Report
- Post-Session Engagement
- Organizations have trouble identifying their strategic priorities.
- Funders and even individual donors like to see well-articulated strategic priorities. But often organizations have trouble identifying them because their process for defining their goals or strategic priorities isn't well-developed. Often they need help with benchmarking and data analysis to identify those priorities.
- Organizations don't have sophisticated engagement plans.
- Attracting new constituents and keeping them engaged is a key issue for all non-profit organizations. Successful ones develop an engagement plan, assess their current participants in their program and understand the characteristics of current participants and possible participants.
- Organizations are restrained by capacity-building issues.
- Lack of capacity-building can prevent an organization from reaching its potential or pivoting to adjust to changes in its operating environment or in the field it serves.
Capacity-building can include any number of areas, including:
- Board development: For example, needing a new area of expertise represented on the board, board training or a new board structure.
- Fundraising systems: For example, an increase or change to the existing fundraising methods, systems or infrastructure.
- Management or staffing systems: Staff needs to be increased or reduced, or personnel needs to be realigned.
- Organizations face facility issues.
- Organizations often need to adjust what kind of facilities they need often, and they need to project into the future what the organization and its operations will need when. This requires planning both in terms of program projections, resource needs (capital campaigns, etc.) and management and logistics.
- Organizations lack sound assessment strategies, including measures of success.
- Often organizations need help with a program evaluation or assessment of the organization overall or specific programs.
- Many nonprofits don't have adequate data collection systems, and they don't have people on their staff who are trained in evaluation and assessment.
- They need to develop assessment plans and measure indicators of their effectiveness; identify the means to capture evaluation data; and make plans to implement and utilize evaluation processes.
- Even for organizations with limited staff resources and simple programs, this can involve basic metrics dashboards and reporting systems for staff planning and board decision making that include gathering and interpreting qualitative and quantitative data.
Nonprofit Organizational Change and Development: Common Problems