At the center of our approach is what we call authentic engagement. Through our collective experiences working with organizations and their leaders, whether focusing on program evaluation, branding, fundraising or facilitation, one key capacity, one vital opportunity has emerged as the ‘hub’ in the metaphorical wheel of organizations: engagement.
- occupy, attract, or involve (someone’s interest or attention).
- participate or become involved in.
As organizations create opportunities for authentic, human-centered engagement, they step into a new way of being that elevates focus from the organization to the issue. By focusing on the cause, you are better positioned to ignite people and passions and to position your organization as a tool to better the world and strengthen your collective impact.
When we focus on engaging stakeholders in ways that are both authentic and strategic, the other areas of our work become aligned, creating a constellation of strategies that, together, lead to a more sustainable support model for your organization. Authentic engagement unlocks the door between partners through guided discussion and thoughtful planning. Authentic engagement works in a variety of ways, including:
- disassembling conflict by excavating shared understanding;
- mobilizing donors through compelling storytelling;
- empowering stakeholders through participatory research;
- focusing your efforts through strategic alignment.
Authentic engagement is a reciprocal, supportive, holistic and inclusive approach; it favors inquiry over answers, and it positions organizations to more organically, more effectively share their story of impact with the people who have the means to fortify it.