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Field Guide to Consulting and Organizational Development with Nonprofits

Field Guide to Consulting and Organizational Development with Nonprofits

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A Collaborative and Systems Approach to Performance, Change and Learning

Table of Contents and Figures



"This is an original and important contribution to the field."
-- Jim Toscano, newly appointed president of the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation and
adjunct faculty member with Hamline University's Graduate School of Management



"Finally, all of the information I have needed on this topic in one comprehensive resource!
As I read, I felt like I was sitting through a high-level consultant training course."

-- Pam Roach, HopeWorks® Consulting, Inc.



"There is a wealth of information here -- an entire career's worth of information.
You don't duck any hard issues. You make them as practical and easy to apply
as I've ever seen. The guide is a gold mine. In my professional opinion, WOW!"

-- Marti Kaplan, nonprofit organizational development consultant



"Nonprofit Executive Directors, aspiring ones, and even derailed ones
would benefit from the numerous applications found within the Field Guide.
And for-profit consultants would be well served reading the Field Guide
before jumping into working with nonprofits."

-- Loren Lee, nonprofit organizational development consultant


NOTE: If you are interested primarily in working with for-profits or government, see our
other book.

Sections of Information On This Web Page

Roadmap for Consultants and Leaders to Accomplish Significant Change in Nonprofits

UNIQUE! This book is certainly unique among books on consulting and leading in nonprofits! For example, there are already many useful consulting books about how to market a consulting business - but marketing does you no good if you have no specialty or expertise to market to potential clients! One of the most prized services is to guide clients' organizations to improve their performance. This book guides you to develop that specialty!

Also, there are already many useful books that explore numerous abstract philosophies, broad paradigms and complex theories on organizational change and leadership - but to remain successful as a consultant and leader in nonprofits, you must be able to do more than think and talk about change - you must be able to actively guide change. This book guides you to develop that expertise!

ALL-IN-ONE! This easy-to-reference, 520-page, all-in-one resource includes descriptions of the most common issues that occur in nonprofits and how to address each issue. The book also addresses many of the problems with traditional approaches to consulting and leading! Thus, this book is extremely useful, not only to external consultants, but also to leaders and managers - change agents working together "in the trenches" to successfully guide change in their nonprofits.

TOOLS! This book provides time-tested, straightforward and highly integrated models, tools and techniques for consultants and leaders to successfully improve nonprofit performance. The book combines highly practical information from the fields of Organization Development and consulting, systems thinking and proven principles for change. Guidelines are organized in a step-by-step, numbered sequence that readers can easily reference. The result is a proven, time-tested roadmap for consultants and leaders to enhance performance, change and learning in nonprofits. Includes forms that can be downloaded from the Web, too.

LOW-RISK! 30-day, money-back guarantee! See our policies.

What Consultants and Leaders Can Do From Using This Book

  • Understand all about you, the consultant or leader, including how you affect clients and staff members (often without knowing it) and your skills as a change agent.
  • Be able to work with others, rather than at them.
  • Establish successful working relationships with members of nonprofit organizations that are undergoing major change, including with members who are extremely busy, short of resources or from multicultural organizations.
  • Gain complete participation of others in your projects for change, including Board and staff.
  • Ensure that the organization is really ready for major change.
  • Build and guide powerful teams to collaborate with you as you guide change in their organizations.
  • Conduct highly focused, practical assessments, while using a variety of relevant and realistic tools to examine all aspects of the organization.
  • Use a variety of practical systems tools to carefully analyze the quality of all systems in the organization and their interconnections with each other.
  • Recognize the most common types of problems that occur in all types of nonprofit organizations.
  • Generate specific recommendations to address all issues in the organization -- including recommendations that are based on the strengths of the organization.
  • Develop complete actions plans that are fully aligned and integrated with each other for optimum implementation and effectiveness.
  • Develop a relevant, realistic and flexible Change Management Plan that has the strong ownership and commitment of all members of the organization.
  • Identify what other expertise is needed to implement the Plan and also where and when that expertise should be used.
  • Guide change according to proven principles for successful organizational change.
  • Effectively address resistance from individuals, groups - and from within yourself.
  • Ensure ongoing motivation and momentum during change -- not too slow, not too fast.
  • Recognize and capture learning throughout the project, including peer-based learning.
  • Know when to ask for help, if needed.
  • Know when and how to leave a project, if needed.
  • Know how to stay sane and centered during long journeys for change.



"Research on organization change has generated important insights for both managers and consultants. Five conclusions are particularly relevant to the work of capacity building of nonprofits: 1) underlying issues must be recognized; 2) the difficulty of change needs to be understood; 3) client readiness should be evaluated; 4) the change process should be managed; and 5) active leadership is crucial.
-- Barbara Blumenthal, in "Investing in Capacity Building"


Types of Audiences Who Can Benefit From Book

  • Non-government, incorporated nonprofit organizations in the United States and Canada.
  • Nonprofit leaders and managers who want to learn how to identify and solve complex problems or to achieve overall exciting goals in their organizations.
  • Inexperienced consultants who want a firm foundation of skills for change.
  • Specialists who want to expand their skills for larger and longer impact.
  • Staff of management support organizations (MSO's) that provide technical and managerial services to nonprofits in their area.
  • MSO's wanting to fully train and resource their local consultants and volunteers to effectively guide change in nonprofits in their area.
  • Training centers that want to train people how to successfully consult to -- and lead change in -- nonprofits.
  • Nonprofits that hire consultants and want to understand what the consultant is really doing to guide change and also how to ensure that those consultants are indeed very effective.
  • Firms that hire consultants and want to be sure that those consultants have strong expertise for guiding change in nonprofits.

This Book Is For Consultants and Leaders Who, For Example:

  • Want to understand and work with the "big picture" in nonprofit organizations.
  • Are sometimes intimidated when faced with guiding major change in an organization.
  • Want to use more than one skill in one part of an organization.
  • Are tired of handing off projects to other people who have stronger skills in organization-wide change.
  • Are tired of "winging it" and want to keep more clear and consistent perspective on their work during projects for change.
  • Want to be sure that the organization has an overall healthy foundation from which to grow -- and want to be the ones to help form that foundation.
  • Are faced with an organization that has many recurring issues and aren't sure what to do.
  • Suspect that there is a lot that they don't know about organizational change in nonprofits.
  • Suspect that traditional approaches to consulting and leading change are not nearly as effective as many people believe.
  • Have read various books on organizational change, but suspect that the concepts in those books will work only with very large organizations that have unlimited resources.
  • Have read books that very generally suggest what to do for change,
    but they still aren't really sure how to do it.

What Is Not Included in This Field Guide

  • This Guide does not include information about how to set up a consulting business, for example, how to name your company, design your marketing materials, determine what fees to charge, do advertising, etc. There are already a wide variety of consulting books containing these topics.
  • This Guide does not include comprehensive, in-depth tools and procedures for any one specific capacity building activity, for example, for developing Boards of Directors or for strategic planning, etc. There are already a wide variety of books about each of these topics. However, this Guide helps you identify all of the types of capacity building activities that really are needed in the organization, the order in which they should be implemented and how to guide that they all effectively occur together.
  • This Guide is not about various broad paradigms and general philosophies on Organization Development, change in organizations, nonprofits, etc. There are already a wide variety of books about these wide-ranging topics.
  • This Guide does not delve deep into the history and ongoing development of the profession of Organization Development. There are already a variety of books with that information.
  • This Guide does not include a wide variety of articles from very well-known authors on different state-of-the-art topics regarding Organization Development, change, etc. There are already a variety of anthologies that take that approach to the various topics.
  • Instead, this Field Guide is focused on a tightly integrated set of highly practical models, tools and techniques to accomplish significant change in nonprofit organizations.

To See Table of Contents, Table of Tables and Index

You can learn a lot about a book by looking at its Table of Contents. Notice how many sections start with "How to ..." See the
Table of Contents. (NOTE: allow time for the 8-page PDF file to download)

See the
(NOTE: allow time for the 9-page PDF file to download)

Also Notice Our Training for Consultants

We provide a comprehensive, nuts-and-bolts training to fully equip and guide consultants to successfully work with nonprofits to identify and address the most common types of problems in nonprofits.
See our trainings.

Our Other Useful Nonprofit Publications


Author: McNamara, Carter

Copyright: 2005

Publisher: Authenticity Consulting, LLC