The Strategic Allies has brought together a team of experts solely focused on the unique transition needs of 501(c)3 organizations entering into strategic partnerships, collaborations and alliances.
Today’s economic and social realities can be harsh for non-profit organizations: increased competition, shrinking donor pools, demands for new technologies, staffing pressures, new governance regulations and public scrutiny. Combine all of these challenges with the difficulties in identifying outstanding leadership, as well as recruiting and developing an effective governance board, and it’s a world that seems to be conspiring against the success of many non-profit organizations.
How to respond? For many groups, it may mean collaborations with "competitors." Others may be ready to move beyond collaboration to explore formal partnerships, ranging from alliances to joint ventures. In some cases, these can mean the difference between a mission that survives, and one that vanishes and is forgotten.
Where to start?
Building strategic partnerships is a challenging and complex process and, if not properly managed, the process can end in frustration, wasted energy, squandered resources and failure. That is where we can help.
The Challenge for Funders
As a foundation or grant-making organization, you have a responsibility to ensure donated funds are used efficiently and effectively, but how many more organizations can you support to fulfill your mission? Do you see mergers between the non-profits you support as an effective strategy to best utilize your funds and best serve the community?
Ultimately, could partnerships or alliances between some of the groups you support guarantee the greater good is fulfilled?
The organizations that approach you for funding are all worthwhile; however, you can identify the overlaps, the wasted resources and the organizational inefficiencies. Also, how many funding requests seem more for survival or maintenance of status quo, and not for program expansion or innovation?
You know there must be a better way to ensure the greatest impact for your donated dollars. That’s where The Strategic Allies can help. We can evaluate not only where funding is directed but also how the organization can become a catalyst for change and improvement.
The Strategic Allies works with foundations and grantmaking organizations as a facilitator, demonstrating how collaborations, partnerships and alliances of supported non-profits can have a longer-lasting impact by creating stronger, more viable entities that accomplish more toward the fulfillment of their missions.
What we provide
While no situation is identical, The Strategic Allies blends ours strategic partnership and consolidation expertise with proven methodologies and a broad network of ancillary professionals to achieve your goals. The Strategic Allies brings together a coordinated team that addresses the major challenges you will face throughout the process. Our turnkey, carefully planned approach keeps all activities and functions in sync and on target throughout your organization’s transition. Our expertise and services include:
- Facilitation: Our experts will provide professional, turnkey facilitation of all key meetings to increase the timely progress of the initiative, while making optimal use of leadership time commitments. The Strategic Allies’ facilitation also mediates conflicts arising during subsequent organizational negotiation.
- Situation Analysis/Feasibility: The Strategic Allies will research, document and plan the overall scope of your initiative and design your transition process. The process includes determining the feasibility of the proposed partnership’s success, while developing internal and external support for the partnership.
- Program: Based on performance measures and evaluation data, The Strategic Allies will evaluate all programs and services currently being delivered by the organizations and provide recommendations on an optimum program mix to achieve the newly consolidated mission and vision.
- Governance: The Strategic Allies will assist in structuring a cohesive governing body capable of leading and achieving the consolidated mission and vision, including development of an integrated board of suitable size and scope, or revision of current boards to include training, appropriate committee structure, and processes for enhanced governance and compliance with new regulations.
- Staff leadership: Our experts will advise on structuring leadership to facilitate the identification and acceptance of a single Executive Director supported by board and staff of both partners, and create a clearly delineated staff structure that represents the best skills of both agencies.
- Human Resources: Recognizing that employees are essential to accomplishing mission, we tackle the complexities of merging personnel policies and procedures, as well as compensation and benefits packages, with sensitivity and discretion to minimize negative impact on staff.
- Cultural Transition: Significant changes mean disrupted organizational cultures. The Strategic Allies understands how these shifts can have a substantial impact on employees, volunteers, donors and even recipients of services. Our team takes special care in the delicate process of integrating potentially disparate cultures into a newly united whole.
- Development & Fundraising: Since the goal of consolidation is usually tied to more effective use of resources, The Strategic Allies takes great pains to ensure key funders are informed about ongoing changes and remain supportive of the consolidation, while reinforcing their relationships with the organization. The Strategic Allies’ development experts work with leadership and staff teams to maximize funding opportunities, resolve overlaps or other conflicts, and produce consolidated development strategies.
- Communications & Marketing: Changing the organizations is only the beginning. Telling the new “story” internally and externally is essential for preserving and strengthening support from key stakeholders. The Strategic Allies develops and initiates a comprehensive communications strategy that includes new core messages, a range of implementation tactics, and measures for tracking communications success.
- Accounting & Finance: The Strategic Allies’ financial experts will assist in the development of appropriate consolidated budgets and, more importantly, will document and implement appropriate cost savings.
- Legal & Compliance: While many organizations may have legal counsel available, The Strategic Allies can provide access on an “as needed” basis to attorneys skilled in completing consolidation or partnership agreements and all of the complexities they may entail.
- Operations: Our expert team will advise and assist in the integration of systems and operational policies, as well as procedures and regulations, along with technology enhancements.