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Tag Archives: Metrics

Are You Collaborating On Solid Ground?

By Amy Farley You cannot realize social transformation in a vacuum. It requires looking outside yourself and beyond your organization’s walls, seeking opportunities to collaborate intentionally both with others you know well and with “unlikely suspects.” As we all know, this is easier said than done. Collaborative efforts can take a variety of forms, but in this post I want to discuss the type of collaboration that involves the strategic and …Read More

Insight #6: Change the Conversation (part 2)

This is the sixteenth in a series of posts that will examine ten insights Community Wealth Partners has uncovered through our research of and experience with initiatives that have created transformational social change. Big. Lasting. Positive. Change.  That’s what so many of us in the social sector are seeking.  Yet many get stuck facing seemingly insurmountable barriers or falling into complacent acceptance of incremental progress. What can you do when you realize you’re stuck?

What Does Success Look Like?

As I travel the country meeting with nonprofit organizations seeking to move from incremental impact to transformational change so that they can solve problems on the scale that they exist, a common obstacle appears almost without exception.  Whether they are working on hunger, health, education, community development, or a myriad of other challenges, nonprofit organizations are failing to grapple with the threshold questions on which all else depends: what specific …Read More

Your Survival is on the Line. Now What?

Last week’s keynote speech on “Investing In Leaders Who Stop at Nothing in Pursuit of Greater Social Impact”, by Leap Of Reason author Mario Morino at the City Club in Cleveland, should have been a wake-up call to nonprofit and philanthropic leaders.  If they take to heart Morino’s warning that “your survival is on the line”, they must ask themselves the following questions: What steps are you taking to build …Read More

Why Are There So Many Mediocre Nonprofits?

There are some excellent nonprofits out there.  People who are using innovative, groundbreaking strategies to create long-lasting social change.  Organizations that are market-directed and make data-driven strategic decisions.  Community Wealth Partners has worked with some of these organizations that are creating transformational change, including the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Miriam’s Kitchen, Share Our Strength, and the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids.  They, and others in the sector, are demonstrating that …Read More

The Role of Data: Using Information to Enlighten Decisions and Create Culture

New York City in the late 1980’s was a city plagued by crime and engulfed in a culture of rampant corruption.  The subway was considered incredibly dangerous, and petty crime had a strangle-hold on the streets.  To put it bluntly, it was a not safe place.  But over the course of several years and under new direction from the police chief and mayor, the city began to see a positive change.  …Read More

Before Fundraising, Focus on the Case for Evaluation

This is the third in a three part series of posts exploring the key ingredients for sustaining an organization’s evaluation capacity. We underscored in our last post the centrality of culture and leadership in building an organization’s evaluation capacity. But sustaining evaluation capacity also depends on an organization’s ability to sell the value of their evaluation efforts to its stakeholders. Effective evaluation depends on the engagement of numerous key stakeholders: …Read More

Sustaining Evaluation Starts With Culture and Leadership

In our last post, we reflected on the importance of evaluation to ensuring an organization’s overall sustainability. Our question was: what can organizations do to build and sustain their evaluation capacity? This question has been the focus of our recent work with the Connecticut Association for Housing Services (CAHS) and CASA de Maryland (CASA), two organizations that had come to recognize that evaluation capacity was about more than collecting some …Read More

Sustain Your Evaluation Capacity, Sustain Your Impact

This is the first in a three part series of posts that will explore the key ingredients for sustaining an organization’s evaluation capacity. As a part of our work studying transformational initiatives, we recently had an opportunity to speak with Geoffrey Canada, President and CEO of the Harlem Children’s Zone (HCZ), about his organization’s efforts to break the cycle of poverty in Harlem.   We were eager to learn how …Read More

A foundation trustee, a young nonprofit ED, and a lobbyist walk into a hotel…: 10 Provocative Thoughts from IS (Part I)

Our country is shaken. Our sector is anxious. Disparity is growing. Apathy is the norm. And we’re grasping for a new social compact. It’s a tough time to be working in the nonprofit and philanthropic community.  It’s also a thrilling time. More than ever, we need to think creatively, build innovative solutions to social problems, and grow, grow, grow what’s working.  This tension between fear and fervor catapulted throughout the …Read More