This area is filled with how-to articles, engaging conversations, and tons of examples of Catalytic Thinking in Action including actual planning sessions. Much to explore and learn from!

Debunking "Accountability to Donors"

Nothing gets my teeth gnashing like the discussion of Donor Rights and Donor Accountability. It is such a dangerous sidetrack from where organizations must aim their primary accountability if we are to create an amazing future for our communities. And yet, the notion that organizations are primarily accountable to their donors prevails, and it is … Read more

11 Ways to Engage Your Community by Gardening in the Front Yard

In last week’s post, I likened Community Engagement to growing my vegetable garden in the front yard of my house. Instead of showing the community only your organization’s well-manicured fait accompli, Community Engagement invites members of your community to become an integral part of the work itself, engaging their hearts, their minds, and their hands … Read more

11 Ways Funders Can Avoid Competition

This week’s Stop Sign on the Road to Changing the World was about Funding without Competition. Here are some easy ways funders can provide support without forcing their grantees to compete. 1- Fund Everyone: Focus on an end result for the community, and invite all organizations who want to help create that end result to … Read more

Stop Sign: Competitive Funding

If this is the sector that was supposed to change the world, how come the world has not changed? Part 1 of this Stop Sign addressed the first of these related questions: How can we develop a community-wide spirit of cooperation, rather than merely the window dressing of collaboration? And to encourage real cooperation, how … Read more

11 Ways Funders Can Encourage Cooperation

If competition is stopping us from achieving amazing things for our communities, how can we encourage cooperation?  Here are some easy (and cheap!) ways funders can inspire and nurture a community-wide collaborative spirit. 1- Food and Friends: Host a monthly lunch. Invite organizations regardless of specialty – invite arts AND human services AND historic preservation … Read more

Consulting Conundrum

Every once in a while, we have a consulting lesson smack us in the face. If you’ve been at this work as long as we have, we guarantee there will come a time when you will say aloud, “I knew better than to do that! What did I expect!?” We have had two of those … Read more