High performing nonprofit teams are built on trust. They have shared values and vision and work to achieve common goals. What sets these teams apart is a commitment to vulnerability, a willingness to engage in conflict around ideas, and a culture of feedback and accountability.
Fundraising Leadership specializes in helping nonprofit organizations build and sustain extraordinary teams through experiential training offered in a variety of formats including – onsite workshops, online courses, and offsite retreats.
Each program is customized and designed to take your organization to the next level.
Most nonprofit training is focused on what to do at work. Fundraising Leadership clients appreciate that our nonprofit training creates an opportunity for leaders and teams to reflect on who they are, and how they can work collaboratively to achieve greater success.
Our areas of focus include:
- Building trust and collaboration
- Engaging in healthy conflict
- Understanding and harnessing a team’s unique strengths
- Creating a culture of candor, feedback, integrity, and accountability
- Encouraging your team to set and achieve stretch goals
- Dealing with difficult emotions
- Developing coaching skills for nonprofit leaders and managers
What is Experiential Training and Learning?
When you listen to stories from leaders, their deepest learning experiences come from being a part of hard-won struggles in which they had to fight to succeed or learned from failure.
Developing leaders is a craft, an art form that involves a combination and balance of the right content to meet the right context for the learner. That learner then must be given the opportunity to get in the driver’s seat to truly leverage the content and context they were exposed to.
The best nonprofit leader training does just that. It uses an experiential learning model where participants make discoveries and experiment with knowledge firsthand, instead of hearing or reading information. The purpose of the training is to strengthen each participants’ expertise through experience, observation, conceptualization, and experimentation. The aim is to help each professional stretch into their best self.
The best training creates a space for participants that is safe AND also purposely designed to confront participants’ habitual patterns. In order for learning to stick, participants must get out of their comfort zones and be challenged in service of their growth.
How can I determine what my team needs?
The first step is to assess your current situation. A candid view of where your team is and what they need to reach the next level is a thoughtful beginning. After that, consulting with trainers who specialize in nonprofit leadership development is an excellent next step.
The best training programs are customized to suit each organization’s needs. The key objectives for the training must be created in collaboration.
What are some of the signs that my team should engage in training?
Is your organization experiencing any of the following challenges?
- Not reaching its financial targets, or other objectives
- Operating in an environment of mistrust
- Experiencing unproductive conflict or avoiding conflict
- Engaging in gossip rather than candid feedback
- Second-guessing decisions
- Lack of responsibility and accountability for shared goals
- Ambiguity about direction and priorities
- Losing ambitious employees to other organizations
- Unwilling to take risks out of the fear of failure
If so, then leadership training can help change those circumstances and create a foundation for success.
How do I know that we are ready for experiential training?
During a consultation, a thoughtful trainer will help you assess where your team is doing well, and where it needs help. Experience shows that teams benefit from training when they are ready to make a commitment to put in the time that is required for real and sustained change.
Research shows that teams that are willing to try something different are often the ones that benefit most. When participants consciously design an alliance with each other and the facilitators at the outset of a new program, the stage gets set for learning, growth, and transformation. As a result, your team will:
- be more interested in growing than being comfortable
- seek feedback
- be willing to experiment, fail, and learn
- ask for help and offer help
- empower individual and collective learning
Also, as part of the design process, trainers will help your organization create a follow-up plan to ensure your team puts the learning into action.
Why doesn’t traditional training stick?
Many nonprofit organizations spend valuable time and money on skill development training. Those programs can be helpful for new or inexperienced staff who need to learn core fundraising (and other) skills.
The work of Pat Lencioni in The Five Dysfunctions of a Team as well as Dan Goleman’s seminal article on What Makes a Leader shows that what most nonprofit leaders and their organizations really need is to help professionals develop the key soft skills that allow them to work together more effectively. That is why more and more nonprofits are turning to experiential training that addresses the mindset and behavior shifts required for lasting change and sustainable results.
And, we now know that when it comes to teamwork and leadership development that sustains the organization in the long-term, there are very few programs that have a lasting impact. Peter C. Brown showed in his excellent book, Make it Stick, that most investments in learning and development do not create lasting results unless the programs are carefully designed and delivered.
What makes experiential training stick?
Nonprofit experiential training programs designed to STICK are now known to be the most effective for adult learners. This type of training is designed to create opportunities for experimentation, failure, and reflection. Successful experiential training programs allow participants to:
- Practice what is being learned
- Reflect and share what happened
- Process the learning individually and as a group
- Make connections between this experience and their broader work
- Commit to applying this learning in their own way
Why Fundraising Leadership?
The Fundraising Leadership team has decades of experience in the nonprofit sector. We are certified professional coaches trained by the Co-Active Training Institute. We are graduates of the Co-Active Leadership Program, an intensive, experiential 10-month learning program. Both of these programs are considered the “gold standard” for experiential learning.
In 2015, we came together with one purpose in mind: designing and delivering experiential training and coaching programs that STICK and help nonprofit professionals and their organizations succeed!
We have coached and trained nonprofit leaders and teams across North America. Clients appreciate that we are seasoned nonprofit professionals who create training that is highly relevant to their unique situations.
Our experiential training programs have been described as “effective”, “illuminating”, “challenging”, “fun”, “productive”, “powerful”, and “full of surprises and insight.”
Read on to explore our full suite of nonprofit training options, which range from 1-hour workshops to multi-day retreats. Or simply contact us to discuss how our team can help your organization achieve more success.
2-Day Intensive Retreat: Conscious leaders take full responsibility for their world, including being the source of their prosperity and being the resolution for what is needed. They are curious. They are emotionally intelligent. They commit to living a life of integrity, expressing themselves with radical candor, and ending gossip in their organizations.
Conscious leaders are grateful for everything even when people, circumstances, and events appear to be challenging. They create a life of play, experimentation, and improvisation. They look after themselves by getting plenty of rest, good nutrition, and exercise. They know that there will always be sufficient resources (especially time and money) to achieve what they’re up to in the world.
Join us in Chautauqua Park in Boulder Colorado to raise your consciousness, play in your zone of genius, and express your creativity.
8-Hour Online or In-person Workshop: Coaching is now well established as one of the most important competencies for maximizing and sustaining individual and team performance. The return on investment on coaching is well documented with major improvements in employee morale, effectiveness, and retention. Coaching Essentials was specifically designed for nonprofit leaders and managers to harness the mission-driven energy of their stakeholders. Continue reading…
8-Hour Online or In-person Workshop: Today, we know that truly effective leaders are distinguished by a high degree of emotional intelligence. This includes qualities of self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skill. In this leadership workshop, you’ll expand your emotional intelligence, learn how to build trust with your team, and improve your ability to deal with conflict in your organization. Continue reading…
8-Hour Online or In-person Workshop: This workshop has one simple goal: to help organizations build and sustain effective teams. Nearly two decades of research now demonstrates that high-performing teams have deep levels of trust among its members and that the individuals on the team engage in healthy conflict to achieve results for the organization. This training program helps teams build trust and engage in healthy conflict. Continue reading…
1-Day Onsite Workshop: Using the powerful SDI® (Strength Deployment Inventory) tool, leaders and their teams learn how motivation and values influence behavior. By understanding WHY we and other people behave as we do, we can all learn how to influence people who think, behave and communicate differently from us. Continue reading…
Self-Paced, Online Course: You are a top-performing nonprofit professional who took a new job (or got promoted) to lead a team. Congratulations! Professionals who adeptly make this transition consciously shift from “me” to “we”. They quickly realize that success depends on elevating from being an individual contributor to being a manager who gets things done through other people. That’s a big shift. One that if you don’t handle well will end in disaster. Don’t Flame Out! Continue Reading…
Self-Paced, Online Course: This training program is specifically designed for nonprofit professionals who engage in fundraising. You will learn and practice essential skills and techniques required to advance relationships with donors from the early stages of prospecting to cultivating, proposing, closing, and stewarding. Continue reading…
1-Hour Online or Onsite Workshop: Do you feel like you spend too much time following up with your team or colleagues? Are you struggling to get the information you need to move forward with your projects? If yes, your team is missing an effective accountability structure. Holding accountability is a key leadership skill that saves time, reduces conflict, empowers others, and helps people grow. This practical workshop will help you create that structure. Continue reading…
1-Hour Online or Onsite Workshop: As a non-profit leader, you need to excel at frontline work and managing your team. Often it feels like you are squeezed between these competing priorities. Coaching is well established as one of the most important competencies for maximizing and sustaining individual and team performance. This practical workshop will allow you to learn and practice key coaching skills to add to your toolkit. Continue reading…