Leading for Impact: Consulting for Groups of Nonprofit Leadership Teams

Leading for Impact® helps local nonprofit leadership teams develop strategy – and build management muscle

Many funders want to make meaningful investments in local nonprofit leaders, but there are few ways to do so at scale. Nonprofit leaders tell us they need help doing more with what they have and prioritizing high-impact programs. Leading for Impact addresses these needs with a program model that provides consulting support to the leadership teams of 50 community nonprofits over the course of five years.   

Why Funders are Bringing Leading for Impact to their Communities

In each LFI city, a small group of local funders focused on making a difference in their communities, has made Leading for Impact possible by creating a scholarship pool to cover 80 percent of program costs for 50 local nonprofit leadership teams. This collaborative approach has made the program accessible to a wide range of nonprofits across six US cities to date (Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Seattle and Washington DC). As a funder:

  • Your support helps dozens of local nonprofits across your community address their most pressing strategic questions
  • You have an opportunity to nominate nonprofits for the program.
  • You make Bridgespan’s curriculum and resources available to local capacity-builders
  • You build the leadership pipeline in your community

How Bridgespan Helped Seattle Funders Develop Nonprofit Leaders and Have Impact in Their Communities


In 2014, The Bridgespan Group launched Leading for Impact (LFI), a two-year program that helps organizations develop their strategies and improve their effectiveness and impact. The LFI consulting experience has helped 260 leading nonprofits in the Atlanta, Washington, DC, Seattle, Boston, Chicago, Detroit increase the impact they have in their communities. Local philanthropists collaborate to make this possible by creating a scholarship pool to cover 80 percent of program costs, so LFI is accessible to the nonprofits that can benefit the most. As an example, since 2016, in partnership with local community funders like the Seattle Foundation, LFI has served 50 Seattle nonprofits that provide nearly $1 billion in services annually. Click here to read the story.

What the Seattle Foundation Says About Leading for Impact


 "Leading for Impact allowed us to make a deep and lasting contribution to a critical mass of nonprofits and leaders essential to our community. It was a rare opportunity to make a world-class investment in the impact we care about."

Tony Mestres
President & CEO, Seattle Foundation

How Local Nonprofits Benefit from Leading for Impact

The power of Leading for Impact lies in the work that participating nonprofit leadership teams do – with Bridgespan support - to address questions of strategy, equity, organization, funding, or leadership development.

Helping the YW Boston Clarify Their Strategy


The YW Boston, the first YWCA in the nation, has been at the forefront of advancing equity for 150 years. Their educational programs touch every aspect of the Boston community. The leadership team felt they needed to revise their strategy to elevate diversity and inclusion further. As participants in the LFI program, The YW leadership team worked with Bridgespan consultants to clarify the impact they wanted to have in Boston. The team then assessed current programs against the new strategy, and decided what programs to develop, stop or continue/enhance to accomplish their goals.

What YW Boston Says About Working With Bridgespan and Leading for Impact


“Excellent program but the knowledgeable Bridgespan staff who provide insightful guidance, support and who nudge us is the reason to participate – and connecting with peers to confirm we are not alone in the challenges we face.”

Annie Garmey
Chief Development Officer, YW Boston

Examples of Leading for Impact Clients

We have had the privilege of working with hundreds of amazing local community nonprofits across the cities funders have invested in. A few examples:


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Our Leading for Impact Experts