Consulting

As part of CoLab, CNE offers consulting services to help emerging and experienced coalitions achieve positive community outcomes.

_MG_8530_sizedWhether you are an organization that seeks support in building collaboration, a multi-sector stakeholder group that wants to explore opportunities for partnership, or an active coalition that could benefit from outside support, CNE can help.

Groups often require the services of an independent, skilled facilitator to maximize their ability to work together to accomplish shared goals.

Examples of the types of CNE consulting available to support collaborative efforts include:

  • Facilitating retreats to develop shared goals and strategies
  • Facilitating new partnership meetings to identify protocols for how the group will work together
  • Supporting a multi-sector group’s efforts to build consensus on issues ripe for joint ventures
  • Convening and facilitating partnerships to explore scenarios for sharing resources
  • Providing strategic and governance coaching to coalition leaders
  • Supporting internal organizational meetings requiring collaborative problem solving & teamwork

Onsite Trainings:

  • The Art and Science of Collaboration and Collaborative Leadership

    CNE training provides frameworks and key skills to support any team or partnering effort. It unpacks the dynamics and conditions that support cooperative behaviors and grounds participants in a collaborative problem-solving approach that focuses on how to create high functioning groups and teams.  At the end of this session, participants will have a useful foundation to guide their efforts to meet their collaborative goals.

  • Strategies for Successful Partnering

    Nonprofits are finding now more than ever that partnering with other organizations can be beneficial to long-term productivity and impact. Although partnering may involve simple informal networks and information sharing sessions, many nonprofits are exploring more complex arrangements. These include applying for joint funding, coordinating services, or even merging organizations into a new structural entity. These decisions require targeted assessments, research, and collaboration to navigate through common challenges and pitfalls.

  • The Nuts and Bolts of Running a Meeting

    This training program focuses on how to convene, create, and implement an effective meeting approach while ensuring inclusive and constructive engagement, efficient information exchange, wise problem solving, and collaborative decision-making.

  • Skills for Effective Communication

    This program highlights key communication insights and models as well as offers specific skill-building activities. Through discussion and active engagement, participants will learn how to frame and reframe conversations to support constructive engagement, listen openly, and to craft power questions to build deep understanding and promote effective problem-solving.

Coaching, Facilitation, and Convening:

  • Individualized Coaching

    “The real voyage of discovery is not to visit new lands, it is to have new eyes.” – Marcel Proust, French novelist

    CNE coaching creates the space for confidential, safe conversations that support inquiry and reflection that takes you to a place of new understanding, learning, and growth. The coaching relationship allows you to unfold as a person, in ways that you direct, and to enhance your capacity for navigating life and work. Coaching explores what is getting in the way of what you want and focuses on learning new skills and unlearning old beliefs that keep you stuck in unhelpful patterns.

  • Team Building

    Even mission-based organizations with highly committed staff need to pay attention to how a team is working together and supporting the needs of its members. CNE can customize a session to focus on the “how” of working together. Our trainers can present new models, teach skills, facilitate important conversations, and conduct exploratory and relationship-building activities. These active sessions can stand-alone event or be incorporated into a larger retreat agenda.

  • Meeting Facilitation

    A neutral, third-party facilitator can help you design and run a meeting (or series of meetings) that ensure(s) clarity and accuracy of shared goals, full and constructive participation, robust conversations, and in-depth problem-solving and decision-making.

    This service can range from running important staff or board meetings to supporting ongoing multi-organizational efforts in coalition. We can provide process design and meeting facilitation to support any stage of your group’s work. Facilitation services generally include preliminary interviews, collaborative agenda design, meeting facilitation and evaluation, and post-meeting follow-ups.

  • Strategic Conversations

    Small nonprofits have limited resources for strategy development and action planning. CNE can work with your board and staff to develop and facilitate strategic conversations — whether at board or staff meetings or at half or day-long retreats — customized to meet your specific planning needs and shape a shared path forward. We also can advise on different types of strategic planning tools and resources, and provider referrals for consultants on request.

  • Community Convening

    CNE can convene and facilitate multi-stakeholder groups that are exploring and addressing specific issues that impact the community. This can include:

    • Identifying interested parties
    • Assessing their needs and concerns regarding the issue and their willingness to participate in the discussions
    • Designing and facilitating meeting agendas
    • Meeting follow-up and evaluation.
  • Coalition Building

    CNE provides consultation support at all stages of a coalition life cycle on topics such as convening, developing norms and protocols, designing a governance structure, building effective task groups, designing and facilitating productive meetings, goal setting, coalition health assessments, and gap analyses.

Thank you CNE for your professionalism, your expertise, and for your patience and understanding of the many aspects that needed to be addressed during a merger process. Thank you too for facilitating our second board meeting, outlining the roles and responsibilities of board, staff, and volunteers. Onward and upward for us all.

Roberta (Robbi) Savage, Executive Director, Rivanna Conservation Alliance

 


To learn more or schedule a CoLab consult, contact CNE’s Senior Consultant, Mary Davis Hamlin.