Our Consulting Approach
At Olive Grove, we thrive on turning complexity into clarity, opportunity into bold action, and problems into simple, elegant solutions. We help foundation, philanthropy, and nonprofit leadership to elevate their vision for the positive difference they want to make in the world, and then gain clarity on the most impactful and tangible steps to achieve their vision. In addition, we support individual executive leaders both within their organizations and on a personal development and coaching basis.
We approach all our engagements as a partnership, placing your needs at the center of the work that we do together. We understand that leadership is exposed to a constant stream of often unpredictable and unplanned-for challenges, and with our depth of experience we can step in to offer both expert, timely and sage counsel, and also fulfill a variety of key roles exactly when that specific expertise is most needed.
In addition, through our extensive network developed over the past 20 years, we have access to individuals, organizations, and resources across a variety of disciplines and service areas. We tap into these like-minded consultants and firms for client projects and actively weave ideas and relationships among nonprofits, philanthropists, entrepreneurs, universities, pro bono providers, and others.
Advisor in Residence Services for Foundations and Nonprofits
Each year, we offer a limited number of Advisor in Residence opportunities for organizations that would benefit from flexible, ongoing board and executive- level support throughout the year. Each professional engagement is tailored specifically to you and your organization’s needs.Foundations Download Nonprofits Download
Founder/Leadership Transition and Change Management Service
How would your organization handle the departure of a critical leader? Many scramble. Unprepared and without a strategy is not a position an organization wants to find itself in. Olive Grove takes a proactive and holistic approach to transition. We can help your organization broach the conversation of succession, develop an effective transition plan, assist in executive search strategy and execution, deliver leadership and board member coaching, and construct an evaluation procedure. We utilize our network to uncover and connect talent with organizations, and are here to partner with you to manage the inevitable leadership changes that happen over time. Change doesn’t have to be scary! If managed properly, it can be an exciting time of transformation.learn more (pdf)
Some great leaders are born. Others are coached by us. Some folks are happy with “effective leadership.” Not us. We provide individual, team, and board member coaching to develop what we formally like to call “kick ass leadership.” Because people are the most valuable asset an organization has, it only makes sense to spend some time and energy cultivating their capabilities. After all, the better your people are, the better your organization’s mission delivery is. And great leadership has a ripple effect. Let us help strengthen your team.Are You Ready?
Governance should work for your mission, not against it. A great board of directors, who understands its roles and responsibilities, will increase an organization’s ability to achieve impact. A mismanaged and disorganized board can be a great limitation. Whether it’s starting a governing body from scratch, or revamping your current one, we can help build dynamic long-term governance models designed to evolve with your organization’s growth.learn more
Keynote Speaking and Presentations
Have you ever heard the phrase “sharing is caring”? Well it’s something we live by at Olive Grove. As thought leaders and collaborators, we want to share what we know. Our team engages audiences to challenge ideas, broaden perspectives, and inspire the motivation for change. We are available for speaking engagements, meetings, conferences, workshops, and other special events.learn more
We believe that in today’s rapidly changing world, philanthropy requires new strategies, approaches and investments. Much of philanthropy has lost it’s risk-taking, innovative edge – but that doesn’t mean you should be haphazard or flippant. Olive Grove draws on its in-house experience and network for the resources to help you move courageously forward with your vision. Whether you are an individual, a foundation, or a corporation, we will meet you where you are, help define your philanthropic goals, and build customized solutions that will drive effective and transformative impact.learn more
Collective Impact, Collaborations, and Mergers
Change isn’t always easy, but it is inevitable. Sometimes the best way to enhance your impact and better deliver on your mission is to partner with someone whose vision aligns with yours. Through new relationships or collaborations an organization can remain relevant in a fast changing world, and multiple partners with unique missions can come together to move the needle on big challenges. We can help you explore sharing services, consolidating back office functions, a merger, collective impact, or another type of alliance. Olive Grove can help to explore the collaborative opportunities that exist for you.Are You Ready?
Group Process and Facilitation
Even if you are a master facilitator, it is nearly impossible to serve in that role for your own organization when the stakes are high and the variables are complex. We put the “pro” in process and free up your time and head space to focus on the issues at hand. Whether it’s a retreat, convening, scenario mapping, or a visioning session, we can support you. We ensure the right people are at the table, clarify what needs to happen, help craft a shared vision, and figure out where the rubber meets the road to ensure effective implementation.Are You Ready?
When you’ve worked with nonprofits for as long as we have, you see some interesting practices along the way: budgets written on the back of an envelope, computer modems tied together to make a “server”, or perhaps, strategic plans without implementation plans. If you are seeing yourself while reading this, don’t worry, we won’t judge! It’s challenging to run a tight operation while you’re out changing the world. We can develop an operational strategy that will propel your organization to the next level. It’s much easier to deliver on a mission when your operation runs like a well-oiled machine. If you’re just starting out in a one-person office, or have a team of hundreds of people, we can help you develop and manage the infrastructure your organization needs so that your focus remains where it needs to be most – your mission.Are You Ready?
What’s in a Name?
We chose our firm’s name carefully to align with our guiding principles and values.learn about us