Helping organizations leverage collaboration to align on purpose, goals, strategy, and governance
In moments of significant change, organizations face both great risks and the potential for significant rewards. Such changes—shifts in policies, markets, or donors; new opportunities or frictions with external stakeholders; transitions in leadership or governance—can raise hard questions. What are the organization’s goals? What’s the best way to pursue them, and who makes that decision? When the situation calls for joint leadership, staff and stakeholder engagement, CBI’s facilitators can turn diverse views from a source of tension into the fuel for shared solutions.
Examples of CBI’s contributions include:
For organizations seeking to define or reimagine their core purpose, we facilitate deep reflection and creative visioning at board, leadership, and staff levels. We ground this process in a realistic review of the organization’s strengths and limitations, making the vision a guiding star to navigate by.
From business-NGO collaboration on voluntary global standards to integrated social service partnerships in cities and states, we help participating leaders clarify shared and complementary goals, define roles and responsibilities, draft strategies and work plans, and create the structures for mutual accountability and progress measurement that can enhance collective impact.
Within organizations, we facilitate collaborative goal setting and strategy development. We structure participation to maximize the diversity of perspectives considered, while distinguishing carefully among consultation, negotiation, and decision-making roles and responsibilities. We support joint drafting of strategies and plans, and we ensure that leaders and stakeholders responsible for execution have full ownership of what they produce.
We help leaders assess current practices, including forms of representation, procedures for deliberation and decision making, and lines of accountability. We work with stakeholders to identify options for shifts in these areas, and examine potential benefits and trade-offs from the standpoint of the organization as a whole and its key constituencies. Where appropriate, we help stakeholders test options using simulations or trial runs.
Our facilitators can also apply our public engagement tools to organizational development. We reach out to stakeholders and the public for feedback on processes, procedures, and perceptions of an organization from its users, customers, and stakeholders.
Facilitate collaborative planning by ensuring that stakeholders understand each other’s perspectives; promoting an open mindset in exploring threats and opportunities; and helping leaders balance goals and minimize tradeoffs
Strengthen collective impact partnerships, by helping parties find constructive ways to examine success metrics, strategies, and allocation of responsibilities and resources; and facilitating transparent, evidence-based joint decision-making
Promote highly effective consultation by ensuring diverse internal and external stakeholders are consulted to learn from their experience, knowledge, and perceptions of the organization
Ensure strategies are implementable by engaging staff in developing both strategies and implementation tactics, and outlining goals, objectives, actions, indicators, and metrics.