Organizational Development

Case Study: Providing Interim Executive Leadership

The Need: A small organization with ambitious growth and fundraising plans needed assistance over several months while hiring a new Executive Director.

The Solution: Elizabeth provided strategic organizational leadership, fundraising, and program support during the executive transition. Elizabeth assisted the Board of Directors with the Executive Search, including recommending a search strategy, crafting a job description and announcement, and supporting the board in its candidate selection process. Elizabeth also provided leadership to key fundraising activities, including crafting and implementing a fundraising strategy to advance the organization’s development objectives during the transition period. Collaborating closely with the staff and board, Elizabeth assessed the organization’s short- and long-term funding needs, identified the highest-priority donors, and successfully raised significant funds for the organization by helping board and staff cultivate individual donors and execute a complex strategy to secure funds for high-priority programs. Elizabeth also provided executive support on issues such as board governance and human resources. Finally, Elizabeth provided support to advocacy and education programs, including connecting staff with key policymakers and funding agencies, and providing strategic advice on policy initiatives.

Case Study: Building a Volunteer Program

The Need: A small, volunteer-driven organization needed more volunteers to carry out its ambitious programs. It also needed to engage new and diverse communities in its work and find an effective way to deploy and thank the many people who were currently volunteering. For example, while the organization enjoyed many active volunteers, new volunteers who expressed interest in getting involved were often turned away—either because there was no clear role for them or because current staff and volunteers were too overwhelmed to provide supervision. At the same time, some work was left undone due to inadequate staff resources.

The Solution: Elizabeth worked with the staff, board, and current volunteers to assess the strengths and weaknesses of existing volunteer activities and recruitment. She identified the need to create a formal volunteer program, as well as a staff position that could be devoted solely to volunteers and member outreach. Elizabeth then analyzed the organization’s funders and successfully secured three years of capacity-building grants to fund this new program and staff position. With a volunteer coordinator on board, the organization successfully built a program to recruit, train, and retain a dynamic volunteer corps, and nearly doubled the number of volunteers engaged in its programs. It was also able to offer a much greater diversity of volunteer activities; train new, talented volunteers who could support and replace outgoing volunteers; and even rapidly deploy large numbers of volunteers to respond to wildlife emergencies.