Receive confidential leader-to-leader coaching and counsel from peers with decades of experience
It can be lonely at the top and difficult to show uncertainty to senior colleagues or to team members. We serve as coaches, thought partners, and mentors to new as well as established leaders in philanthropy. We provide national perspective, a confidential sounding board, and expertise that draws on our decades of experience.

ALG offers confidential advising for leaders, from experienced leaders, who are driving significant change, who desire transformational growth, and/or who are new to their roles or are forging new CEO-CDO partnerships.

The ALG Approach:

Advising is tailored to the needs of the client and might include:

  • Audit/assessment of the fundraising program, structure, and staff;
  • Assessment of the viability of an internal promotion to CDO and assistance in transitioning an internal candidate into the role;
  • Supporting the successful launch of a new CDO—providing thought partnership in his/her first 6-12 months, providing counsel and training around issues such as working with boards, serving as a cabinet member, organizing teams for maximum return on investment, building consensus across the organization, etc.;
  • Discussion of board size, expectations, and roles in fundraising;
  • Discussion of appropriate levels and phasing of investments in the fundraising program; and
  • Discussion of any number of topics related to philanthropy and nonprofit leadership, where the availability of a confidential sounding board and an additional perspective—for CEO and/or CDO—would prove valuable.
Outcomes You Can Expect:
  • Achievement of specified objectives for each engagement
  • Improved knowledge, confidence, and effectiveness of the CEO and/or CDO

Success for new fundraising leaders depends on their ability to move fully and quickly into their new roles. Aspen Leadership Group offers a special executive coaching program for newly placed Chief Development Officers, Executive Directors, and CEOs. ALG’s experienced executive coaches, all who have also served in multiple CDO and CEO roles, deliver a focused program of mentoring, counsel, and confidential feedback that enables the new leader to hit the ground running.

Our executive coaching consultants have all held fundraising leadership roles at one or more institutions. They bring to the table decades of experience working with boards, institutional leadership, volunteers, and professional staff. A major objective of the coaching program is to strengthen a new fundraising leader’s capability and confidence in the range of roles required for success—including, but well beyond, success working with donors.

Beginning with a review of current competencies, and drawing on lessons from 60 successful fundraising leaders included in Ron Schiller’s book, The Chief Development Officer: Beyond Fundraising, ALG and the new fundraising leader will create a set of objectives for the coaching period. As they arise, specific challenges can also be addressed in a timely, confidential setting.

Outcomes You Can Expect
  • Faster and more complete transition into a new leadership role
  • Assistance in identifying and focusing on early wins in a new role
  • Ability to call upon experienced fundraising leaders and respond to challenges as they arise
  • A framework for understanding the many complex roles and responsibilities of fundraising leaders that go beyond fundraising but are critical to success

We also provide leader-to-leader counsel in several areas that offer today’s fundraising leader an opportunity to effect transformational growth: principal gifts; diversity, equity, and inclusion; and women’s philanthropy. Explore our Services menu and contact us if you would like to discuss specific leader-to-leader consulting in any of these areas.

What Our Partners Are Saying

With the support of the ALG team, we are now able to build on our strong history by approaching conversations with more confidence and with a long-term partnership building mindset. We are creating a cohesive sense of belief and confidence in our organization, its leaders and practices, and fostering greater connectivity between leading donors. And collectively our team is becoming more effective at closing more – and larger— gifts. This is directly as a result of our strategic work with ALG.Christopher Street, Vice President of Development, All Stars Project
With Aspen Leadership Group, we have gained more than the expertise expected from a consultant with years of personal and professional experience—we have gained a thoughtful conversation partner, strategist, and—most importantly—a person who quickly invested in our interests and goals. Our ALG consultant is truly unique in this regard. Consultants in every industry would benefit in myriad ways by understanding and modeling his approach to his work.Mathew Pinson, Chief of Staff for Advancement, Emory University
Aspen Leadership Group provided expert direction and execution of a retreat of college presidents. The preparation before the meeting was superior and the facilitation of our retreat was as near to perfection as possible – knowing when to insert a comment or question to get the group focused and back on track as well as knowing when to the let the discussion evolve and grow. I look forward to working with ALG in the future for this type of work as well as other assignments. James Gandre, President, Manhattan School of Music
ALG team with ASP team
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