Foundation strategy refresh

Established foundation facing crossroads

This globally renowned family funded foundation with programs in the US, Europe and in the developing world needed to revisit their priorities in order to bring discipline to their social investments. They needed a process that would involve the Board, which included family members and leading professionals.

Collaborative strategy development

Over a period of almost a year, we planned and conducted a series of structured workshops with the team, the Board and their Advisory Board. We researched and framed up extensive external data including how they fitted into the ecosystem of other players. We worked with the executive team and the board to determine that the Foundation was not operating at scale and needed to narrow its focus. We jointly came up with a clear restatement of their vision statement and gained alignment on returning to the original intent of the Foundation. This led to some difficult but necessary choices to exit some previously considered marquee programs in order to focus on others.

Strategy that lives on

On the basis of the new strategy, the foundation has exited its projects in Europe and focused its work in developing countries on just 3 countries. In the U.S. the foundation has narrowed the scope of its work to areas that were not well-served. The ED and Board are well aligned on this new direction. The one page strategy summary and the “strategy book” continue to be used frequently as guardrails.


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