Impact Strategies & Tools

Translating Your Philanthropic Objectives Into Action

How will you use your resources to achieve your purpose?

At its core, grantmaking brings your objectives to life to create good for others. Your philanthropic strategy is the roadmap to achieve your desired social impact.

Your strategy should join together your purpose, people and partners, resources, and a framework of vehicles and tools. Be mindful of including processes for identifying and evaluating funding opportunities, making funding decisions, and monitoring progress.

Consider the following questions:

  • What are your goals and aspirations for social impact?
  • What is the context in which you are operating and what role do you want to play within that context?
  • What processes will you use to achieve those goals?

Designed to help you understand strategic approaches and the tools at your disposal, this primer and the following content offer a framework to boost your impact.

Download the Impact Strategies and Tools Primer

Featured Resources

VIDEO | July 17, 2023

Navigating Family Philanthropy: Choosing Your Social Impact Strategies

So how do you design your social impact strategy? Begin with goals and aspirations. Setting goals helps you focus your resources. Your goal is your vision for success. It identifies the changes you want to see within a specific population, place, or issues you will support.

BOOK CHAPTER | September 21, 2017

Effective Grantmaking: Fulfillment of Your Mission

This resource is an excerpt of Chapter 11 from “Splendid Legacy 2: Creating and Re-creating Your Family Foundation”.


Expanding Your Comfort Zone: A Window Into Risk in Family Philanthropy

Philanthropy is often described as society’s “risk capital.” Our generosity can support causes and ideas that business and government agencies cannot or will not. We can use our resources to inspire new ideas, challenge existing thinking, or continue supporting an organization when others won’t.


Fast Forward to Greater Impact: The Power of Field Scans

Field scans are emerging as a core tool for family funders inundated by increasingly larger numbers of nonprofits seeking funding, the ubiquity of social media pitches, and an almost limitless amount of data available on the web—data which can be more overwhelming than useful. Field scans are particularly valuable for family foundations that want to try a new strategy, find

PASSAGES ISSUE BRIEFS | October 21, 2019

Bridging the Power Divide: How Family Funders Share and Shift Power

As a family funder, how can you acknowledge and responsibly navigate the power of your position? How does the power and privilege you hold affect those you interact with and support? How can you use your power for good—to make lasting impact?

REPORT | April 17, 2020

Scaling Solutions Toward Shifting Systems

The Scaling Solutions toward Shifting Systems initiative was launched in 2016 as an inquiry: Can we encourage collaborative, longer-term, adaptive resources to fund and accelerate scalable solutions targeting systemic changes around pressing global issues?

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