At Acceleration Group, we work with mission-driven organizations to deepen their impact and capture critical opportunities to gain momentum. We do this through two major approaches: facilitating bottom-up innovation, and advising strategy for change. We also offer metrics and research services through our in-house research shop, Impactful Measures, to help you better understand and communicate your impact.
If you’re interested in working with us, please contact us to set up a consultation, and we’ll provide you with a personalized proposal that describes what we can do to meet your needs.
Bottom-up innovation is our specialty. It’s a method for producing innovative ideas by going to the people who are closest to the problems, barriers, challenges hindering growth, and asking them for their solutions. We have a wealth of experience implementing this method, and we’ve seen it work time and time again. Bottom-up innovation is a sound strategy for gaining a competitive edge through constant improvement and for fostering employee engagement by involving them in the organization’s growth.
Program Design and Toolkits
After years of experience facilitating groups of students, community members, employees, and executives, we know how to ask the right question and provide the proper structure for sourcing innovative ideas from people at all levels of an organization. Many of the best ideas come from the people who come face-to-face with common problems every day. Our program designs and innovation toolkits will prime your organization to reap the benefits of bottom-up innovation.
Leadership and Culture
Beyond programs and toolkits, organizations have the power to sustain innovation by creating a culture around bottom-up innovation. Strategic shifts in leadership style, management tactics, company values, and communications can encourage an organization’s members to continually imagine and attempt new solutions, programs, and ventures. The potential for gaining and maintaining a competitive edge through innovation is already in your team, and we can show you how to unleash it.
We’ve led and contributed to dozens of venture competitions and entrepreneurship courses, and we’ve learned what it takes to bring ideas into reality. Through close collaboration with leadership teams, facilitation of program events, and group workshops with participants, we can provide the structure and guidance to take a vague concept and transform it into a concrete execution plan.
Oftentimes, budding innovations need intensive support in order to maximize their impact. Our team knows how to nurture a concept’s strengths, identify its weaknesses, and work with its creator to turn it into a feasible project that merits funding. Intensive acceleration is the best way make the most of bottom-up innovation, and when it comes to acceleration, we are some of the best.
Strategy for Change
Our strategies are best suited for ambitious organizations seeking to transform their industries, particularly those committed to positive social change. Our strategic plans and management tactics equip leaders with the knowledge they need to introduce innovations or “disruptions” that improve their organizations’ market positions and challenge incumbents fighting to preserve business-as-usual. If your organization is at an inflection point, or if it’s prepared to make a transformative move, we have the expertise to help you step confidently and maximize your impact. And we do this while bringing the personal touch and flexibility only boutique consulting firms can offer.
From grand strategy to brand strategy to strategies for program and investment portfolios, we know how to develop comprehensive plans that accomplish our clients’ goals. Our approach is holistic and pragmatic. We bring together our clients’ mission, the needs of the their constituencies, and the pressures of the external landscape to discover opportunities and lay out the steps for taking advantage of them.
Through workshops, coaching, and focused consultation, we provide our clients with executive management training to maximize their leadership potential. We focus on developing key leadership skills to drive performance across an organization and equip it with the vision, drive, and aptitude to become a leader in its industry.
Growth and Change Management
Whether caused by internal growth or change in the external landscape, some moments in an organization’s life cycle (moments we call, “Acceleration Moments”) have the potential to radically affect its future. If managed properly, these moments can have tremendous upsides. Our team has the expertise to analyze these moments and prescribe actions that position our clients to enjoy the greatest payoffs.
Turnaround and Corrective Action
We work on behalf of our clients and their funders to turn around underperforming divisions and beneficiary organizations. Our approach combines attention to financial performance with a focus on the organization’s mission, the personnel’s morale, and the possibilities that open up through the turnaround process.
Metrics and Research
Socially minded ventures, from nonprofit organizations to government agencies and for-profit ventures, often find themselves at a loss when it comes to measuring their value and impact. Even institutions that have had long track records of providing high quality programming and support to populations in need find that they have limited capacity to demonstrate their effect on the populations they serve, often because they have not invested properly in this area of the organization. As the competition over funding and resources increases, it is imperative that organizations seeking to make a change engage in a commensurate effort to study and understand their impact.
Research and Evaluation
Our research supports organizations’ efforts to demonstrate the impact and effectiveness of their programs. Before conducting any study, we work closely with clients to identify the right outcomes to measure, understand the target audience, and explore the methods and approaches that best suit their organizational needs. We also help organizations craft messages that clearly describe how their impact supports their mission.
Creating Data-Driven Organizations
Data is the lifeblood of an organization. However, for many organizations, decisions are still made based on anecdotes and hunches rather than empirical information. To create a culture of evidence, organizations require an effective data collection process and the proper reporting tools. Together, these must do more than just present numbers, they must provide a full picture of organizational health through KPI’s, data stories and regular reports. We guide organizations on how to create this process and provide them with the necessary training to help staff make meaning from data.
We spare our clients from having to rush into hiring a data scientist or research manager and possibly making a mistake. We provide guidance on what skill sets are needed, where to find the right hires, and how to set up a research shop. We also provide ongoing guidance and professional development for their staff.
We help social innovators demonstrate the value of their work to key decision makers. Our research and writing can influence policy decisions that will ultimately support your organization and the people and institutions that you serve. Possible collateral includes research briefs, white papers, blog posts and other publications that address the issues that matter to you.
Above, we’ve outlined our services in some detail. If you’re interested in working with us, please contact us to set up a consultation, and we’ll provide you with a proposal describing what we can do to meet your needs.