One Client’s Strategic Planning Story
The Client: A large community foundation in a midwestern state providing services to a large number of donor-advised funds with a purpose to help fund socially relevant nonprofit organizations.
The Challenge: The Foundation was operating at a deficit and a new CEO was determined to change the situation with a belief that a new focus was needed for the organization to survive and grow.
The Process: Two DTA consultants worked over a period of several months with a small strategic planning committee and then facilitated a series of “mini-retreats” with the leadership, board and senior staff.
Six Month Results
- A shift from being primarily donor-driven to primarily community-impact driven.
- A new four-pillar strategic goal framework (Be Bold, Be Big, Be Strong, Be Known) deeply embedded into operations, including serving as the basis for:
- staff goal-setting and evaluation
- staff time-management to ensure focus on goals
- all decisions on how, when, and where to spend funds
- Ongoing Board education, engagement, and support of the four pillars through dashboard reports, active updating by all staff of their relevant pieces, and continual reiteration of focus by the CEO
Longer Term Results
- 89% more assets under management and a 51% increase in the operating budget
- Significantly more flexible capital thanks to new assets with fewer constraints
- Vastly expanded partnerships and sophistication of grant-making
- Financially independent (fully fund core budget through internal revenues first time in history)
- Recognized as one of the 20 fastest growing community foundations in the country