Equipping nonprofits to advance social change

Tag: Frances Kunreuther

The Leadership in Leaving

This report is the second in a series that examines different aspects of a transformational moment for the nonprofit sector, as the baby boomer cohort begin to trainsition out of their current leadership roles and contemplate their next stage of work and life. It focuses on the nonprofit leader’s decision to leave a long-term executive position. More specifically, the report highlights and explores the leadership in leaving as an often neglected aspect of a nonprofit leader’s role that is a key in understanding and successfully completing the exit process.

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The Next Stage: Leaving Long-Term Leadership

This Report from the Field, written by Frances Kunreuther and Tim Wolfred, presents how some long-term leaders in the large Baby Boom cohort – both those who have exited and those who are planning their departures – describe the process of leaving and figuring out what is next. The findings – based on two in-depth focus groups – draws from the research and experience of its authors who have been collecting information through the lens of succession planning and from surveys/interviews on defining this new stage of life and work.

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Leaving Long-term Leadership

Building Movement Project recently teamed up with the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Fellows Network and Tim Wolfred an expert on executive transitions (who consults for his former employer CompassPoint in his new stage of work) to conduct focus groups with older leaders in the nonprofit and public sectors. The results can be found in Reports from the Field: The Next Stage: Leaving Long-term Leadership which offers some important insights that confirm our other findings. The Report highlights both the personal stories and structural barriers facing those who have recently left their leadership positions and those still in leadership who are thinking about their next move. It offers some of the challenges in leaving and points out how we need to move from seeing these experiences as individual problems to one that is collectively shared. Here, Frances Kunreuther reflects on what the implications of these findings are, both for long-term leaders contemplating their own transitions out of executive roles, and for the sector as a whole.

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Vision for Change

This report details the specific findings of our conversations with seventeen US social justice leaders under 40 who serve as the executive director or co-director of an organization. Our goal was to learn more about the experiences of younger leaders committed to large-scale change. It was clear from the interviews that they are driven by their commitment to their organizations, and wanted to contribute to a larger movement for social change. Yet, they face big challenges that shed light on the changing landscape of the movement and on the infrastructure that's needed to create sustainable managers, organizations, and networks for years to come. This report focuses on what it takes for these leaders to do their jobs and makes recommendations for concrete change that will support their visions, and help to build a stronger progressive infrastructure for all stakeholders.

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The New Lifecycle of Work

As long-term leaders in the nonprofit sector think about life after they leave their current jobs, two things become clear: they are not planning to move into traditional retirement, and they want to continue to contribute to the common good. This report, done in partnership with Civic Ventures and Clohesy Consulting, describes the findings from a survey of long-term nonprofit leaders age 55 and older and how they view their next stage of life.

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Structuring Leadership

This report sets out to identify and document models of distributed leadership with a focus on increasing organizational impact. Our interest was to find operating structures that address potential barriers to effectiveness, including the growing demands on executives running nonprofits, the current realities of a multigenerational workforce where older leaders will stay longer, and the expectations and work style of new generations coming into the workplace with a strong team orientation. This paper outlines the foundations, practices, and results of distributed leadership and suggests directions for further research.more

Working Across Generations

Now available! Working Across Generations, winner of the Axiom Gold Medal for Philanthropy, offers a comprehensive look at the leadership and generational shifts in the nonprofit sector. Order your copy now! more

From the Ground Up

Social-change organizations operate in communities all over the United States, but little has been written about the details of their operations. This new book, co-written by Building Movement Project Director Frances Kunreuther, takes a close look at how these organizations address challenges related to leadership, staff development, resource needs, decision-making, and collaborations.more

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