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DOING LABS: Learn. Draft. Do.

GCN is launching a new consulting service called DOING LABS as a way to help nonprofits develop strategies and action plans in specific areas: annual fundraising, developing talent, marketing, outcome measurement, and more. Many organizations lack the expertise – on staff and board – to tackle these plans, and find the cost of consultants daunting. To fill that gap, Doing Labs will bring together small cohorts of nonprofit leaders to learn theory, gain confidence through practice, then draft plans and complete them using ready-made templates and teamwork. With our guidance, you’ll create just the plans you need, and be ready to execute.

Today’s nonprofit leader needs a variety of action plans to be successful. Unfortunately, they don’t always have an efficient way to learn the ins and outs of each – not to mention the time it takes to put them together. The idea of Doing Labs is to make learning active, hands-on, and results-oriented, with a working plan as the final product.

Small organizations struggle to marshal the resources needed to complete these plans. This experience is designed for organizations with less than $1M in revenue.  

THE LAB EXPERIENCE 

We recommend signing up a team of 2 to 5 to participate in the Labs, which are held in the evening (5:30 to 8:00 pm) to encourage board member participation. No more than five organizations will be scheduled per Lab, giving GCN consultants the chance to provide individualized assistance for each organization.

Labs will be held in the GCN training room, and we will provide food and drinks so attendees can come directly from work. Pre-registration is required.

Participants must bring a laptop to download documents, including templates and plan samples.

LAUNCHING FALL 2018

 

DOING LAB | Write the Annual Development Plan

Write a 12-month development plan for fundraising, donor engagement, social media, and your annual appeal in this 2-session Lab. Templates and samples will be provided to download, use in the session, and take away with you. Homework between sessions is required. Bring your development committee chair and board chair in addition to essential development team members.

Consultant
Kathy Keeley

Dates
September 5, 2018
September 10, 2018

Cost
$500 per organization

 

 

DOING LAB | Write the Talent Development Plan

Do you need to improve employee retention, plot career paths for your people, and prepare for your future personnel needs? This 2-session Lab is designed for organizations without an HR department, who need a plan to keep their most essential employees engaged and on-board, build a stronger and more capable team, and find the additional talent they’ll need to meet the goals of the organization.

Consultant
Mary Bear Hughes

Dates
November 13, 2018
November 27, 2018

Cost
$500 per organization

 

 

DOING LAB | Start Your Nonprofit

Get your nonprofit off the ground and into action: Draft articles and bylaws using templates, bring together your founding board, and complete your tax-exempt application in this 3-session Lab. Come prepared to do the paperwork, get the vital materials drafted, and start your organization on the right foot.

Consultant
Kathy Keeley

Dates
August 30, 2018
September 6, 2018
September 13, 2018

Cost
$750 per organization

 

 

DOING LAB | Write the Strategic Plan

Writing a strategic plan can be daunting, and not everyone can afford consultants. In this 4-session team-based Lab, you’ll create a strategic plan with a complete environmental scan, at least three goals, and associated objectives. In the end, you’ll take away a draft that you can present to the board for adoption, and a roadmap to achieving organizational priorities that you can share with your funders and donors. This Lab will be hands-on: You’ll be writing sections of the plan both in and outside of class.

Consultant
Jose Bright

Dates
November 6, 2018
November 13, 2018
November 20, 2018
November 27, 2018

Cost
$1,200 per organization

 

 

COMING IN 2019

 

DOING LAB | Write the Marketing Plan

Marketing has become an important activity in nonprofit organizations, but few have the staff, money, or time to create an annual marketing plan. Often left to development or program staff, marketing is more than outreach and more than fundraising in today’s digital and segmented world. Learn best practices and create a 12-month marketing plan for your organization.

Details to be announced in fall 2018

 

DOING LAB | Write Organization Result and Outcome Measures

Defining your impact has become essential. Donors are no longer willing to accept inconsequential measures like the number of people you served: They want to understand the changes you’ve made in the lives of those people. Attend this 2-session Lab, and you’ll write outcome measures for your programs, and result measures for the organization, that make a real impression on donors.

Details to be announced in fall 2018