Non-Profits

Non-profit organizations play a critical role in our society and economy, and are under increasing stress, pressure, and scrutiny as they work to achieve their missions. The challenges of maintaining strategic focus in a dynamic landscape (and in light of serving many needs), raising funds in a competitive environment, and working across a complex stakeholder system all contribute to these pressures, and have been heightened in light of the current crisis.

CFAR has a long history of supporting leading non-profit organizations across multiple sectors—healthcare and social services; economic and civic development; public policy; education and youth; and media, arts, and culture. In all of our work with organizations where mission and impact are paramount but stakeholder interests may be diverse, CFAR is attuned to structures and processes that will actually make sense on the ground. We bring years of experience and innovative methods to help with strategy, leadership, organizational change and design, and collaboration—all applied to our clients’ unique situations. paper plane icon

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Associations

Professional associations play a critical role for the professions and members they serve, and for the general public. Associations are complex organizations, balancing the interests of multiple constituencies, and leveraging the efforts and expertise of volunteers, members, and staff. Association leaders must navigate membership expectations, pressures on time and resources, and the need to continually adapt governance structures to changing requirements. Our work with association leadership guides them to innovate their programs and member relations, improve organizational design and effectiveness, and develop leadership skills. We offer associations support with strategic planning, governance (both board and association-wide), and leadership development.

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Non-Profit Foundations

While the influx of private wealth into foundations continues to grow, the very nature of philanthropy is multi-faceted, requiring innovative organizational solutions that accelerate impact. Foundations need to exercise creativity and sophisticated business strategies to amplify impact and, increasingly, they demand measurable return on their social investments. CFAR has a long history of consulting to many of the country’s largest and most prominent foundations, understanding what it takes to face a world that is simultaneously filled with opportunity and constraint—and how to translate those opposing forces into action. We help foundations refresh organizational strategy and structure to respond to changing market needs, develop more effective leadership teams, and amplify impact.

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Social Service Organizations

Social service organizations play a critical role in our society. These organizations grapple with forces both internal (competing views on services to provide and constituents to serve, the unique relationship between volunteer boards and professional staff) and external (complex government regulations and oversight, competition for funds) all while usually operating under the constraints of limited financial and human resources. Applying our distinct approaches to strategy, change, board governance, and collaboration, CFAR helps social service organizations address strategic choices about risk, reach, and engagement, and build partnerships within the communities they serve—all in the service of their organization’s mission.

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CFAR Spotlight: Dan Portnof
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This week's Spotlight features Analyst Dan Portnof. Dan joined CFAR in 2020 after graduating from Boston University (BU) with dual BAs in Philosophy...