Pursuit of Excellence: Board Self-Assessment Tool

The Pursuit of Excellence Board Self-Assessment Tool (POE) is designed to help family foundations understand their current performance as they strive for greater effectiveness. POE walks boards through a powerful self-assessment process to quickly pinpoint areas of shared interest for the group. POE was developed for boards and CEOs seeking to understand their strengths and discover opportunities for improvement. Unlike other board self-assessment tools, POE focuses on the family-specific aspects of governing and managing a foundation. Interested in taking the assessment? Pursuit of Excellence is available at no cost to current NCFP members and for $2,500 for non-members.

Contact Jason Born at jason.born@ncfp.org for additional details.

1. Quickly assess your strengths and weaknesses

Your board members will complete a research-based, industry-tested, 15-minute questionnaire to review your current practices in grantmaking strategy, governance, and other family-specific aspects of managing a foundation. Designed especially for family foundation board members, this customized assessment tool will allow you to compare and measure your practices with the broader field of family philanthropy.

2. Identify areas of shared interest and concern

Based on responses to the assessment tool from your board members (and staff), you’ll receive a comprehensive report providing instant insight into your foundation’s current strengths and weaknesses, and areas where perceptions of effectiveness may differ.

3. Create an action plan for moving forward

Working with your chosen consultant, you’ll meet with fellow board members to review the results of your POE Assessment Report and identify any areas needing improvement or a new approach. You’ll create a customized action plan for moving forward, with special access to the examples and practices of other family foundations that have faced similar challenges.

NCFP’s Pursuit of Excellence Diagnostic Tool is straightforward, comprehensive, and, most importantly, useful. In the short term it helped our board to guide the evolution of our grantmaking. Over the longer term it has helped guide the recruitment of new board members and develop our understanding of the responsibilities we accept.
– William Graustein, Trustee, William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund