Collaborating across power differences
Board members, staff, advisors, and donors in family philanthropy.
Power dynamics can really get in the way when you are trying to build a healthy, strong organization. If family foundations and their grantee partners don’t see eye to eye, or if junior members of the family pose challenges to their board leaders or elders, the back-and-forth struggle isn’t just uncomfortable; it can undermine the organizational stability and compromise impact. But there are practical, effective solutions for this struggle. In this session featuring Dr. Miki Kashtan, Lead Collaboration Consultant at the Center for Efficient Collaboration, participants will learn both concrete tools and out-of-the-box solutions for bridging power differences and collaborating more effectively. Miki will be joined by Cindy Mercer, co-founder of the Planet Heritage Foundation, who will share her own experiences with collaboration and power differences in philanthropy.
Participants are invited to share specific questions and concerns you have faced in your own work by emailing them to firstname.lastname@example.org prior to the webinar (questions will be confidential, unless you wish to be identified). Miki and Cindy will be available to provide on-the-spot consultations for resolving specific issues for a limited number of registrants.
Dr. Miki Kashtan, Lead Collaboration Consultant at the Center for Efficient Collaboration, has successfully coached families, groups, and organizations to overcome seemingly impassable differences. Miki draws on over 20 years of experience as a facilitator and consultant working with businesses, nonprofits, government bodies, and community groups. In 2004 she created the CEC’s collaborative decision-making tool, Convergent Facilitation, and she has a track record of sussing out systemic problems, quickly building trust even in highly polarized groups, and reaching breakthrough solutions. Miki is a co-founder of Bay Area Nonviolent Communication, the parent organization of the Center for Efficient Collaboration. Her background includes a Ph.D. in Sociology from UC Berkeley, and her third book, Reweaving Our Human Fabric: Working Together to Create a Nonviolent Future, explores the tools, practices, and systems needed for a collaborative society.
Cindy Mercer is a strategist committed to results-driven alliance building. With philanthropist Addison Fischer, Cindy co-founded Planet Heritage Foundation (PHF). PHF is an entrepreneurial; grant-making foundation focused on facilitating funder and NGO collaborations benefiting climate, oceans, forests, biodiversity, health freedom and sustainable agriculture. PHF just launched The Aligned Intermediary to help large scale, long-term investors (LTIs) channel significant amounts of institutional capital into resource innovation investments – energy, waste and water – identifying deals that meet specific financial rates of return, while also reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. Thus far, four LTI’s have signed letters of intent to deploy a billion dollars of capital through AI-identified transactions. With Oak, Marisla, Waitt and DiCaprio Foundations, PHF also launched Oceans 5 -- a global marine funder's collaborative focused on marine protection and constraining overfishing (www.orceans5.org), as well as Energy Options Network -- a global network of energy sector experts committed to expanding the zero carbon technology toolkit to address climate change at scale.
Cindy serves on the board of The Philanthropy Workshop and is deeply engaged a number of donor education collaboratives Since early 1990s, she has managed private foundations, served as an advisor and board member to various NGOs and has a background in non-profit law, advocacy, strategic planning and mediation. As a result, Cindy has become keenly interested in the nuts of bolts of collaboration and the power of partnership!
What participants said:
“Shared values are not enough. If we want our core values to be lived out in our organizations, we need decision‐making systems and resource-allocation systems that embody those values. Those are the kind of insights and practical applications that this workshop provides. I dream about placing what I have learned from Miki in the hands of every leader, so they can be nourished by the vision and the radically new tools that I have learned from her.”
I thought Mikki and Cindy gave a thoughtful and refreshing framework for thinking about collaboration in a new way, as well as some practical connection to their model.
The speakers have given me the tools to start a dialogue with other board members and also with our grantees that positive changes can occur, even when there is conflict, as long as all parties feel valued and heard. We need to constantly ask each other questions.
The speakers have given me the tools to start a dialogue with other board members and also with our grantees that positive changes can occur, even when there is conflict, as long as all parties feel valued and heard. We need to constantly ask each other questions and not assume that just because we all share the same cause that we should all agree on the same solution. Thank you NCFP for providing yet another outstanding webinar!
Truly found the webinar useful today!! Great perspective shared and lessons, behaviors, mindsets to consider implementing – right away – in a multitude of situations and environments.
It actually exceeded my expectations with Dr. Kashtan's fleshing out of the PowerPoint presentation points, and showing them in action through the live talking through of case situations. AND Ms. Mercer further elucidating and demonstrating.
It exceeded my expectations in that I was expecting more of a traditional approach to collaboration. The presentation focus on a higher level of thinking about collaboration across power lines.
Miki was amazing! Lots of solid content, plus inspiration.