A Case Study
“Our work with Social Velocity has been critical to developing a viable growth strategy and plan for Literacy First. The process helped us clarify our core competencies, engage stakeholders, and articulate exactly how and why Literacy First should grow. As a result of Social Velocity’s strategic planning and follow-up coaching, my staff and I, and our advisory board, have the tools and confidence to reach our larger vision for Literacy First. This was one of the best investments we have made in ACE!”
– Mary Ellen Isaacs, Executive Director of Literacy First
Literacy First, an early childhood literacy-tutoring program, had a proven model that was really working to get children to grade level in reading by 3rd grade. The outcomes of the program were so impressive that they wanted to expand it to many more schools that had children in need. However, the program was a well-kept secret. A small advisory board and limited external connections left the organization struggling to build the kind of community, funder, and school district support they need to dramatically grow.
Literacy First hired Social Velocity to create a 3-year strategic plan for growth. Literacy First assembled a working group of staff, advisory board members, funders and other key stakeholders, and Nell Edgington led them through a 5-month process analyzing the internal and external environment, creating the goals and objectives of the strategic plan for growth, determining the projected budget required to get there, and creating a detailed annual operational plan to bring the plan to fruition.
Once the strategic plan was created and adopted by the advisory board and other stakeholders, Literacy First hired Nell to coach their staff on:
- Restructuring the advisory board to lend more strategic support and expand community connections to the organization
- Expanding fundraising efforts in order to support the new goals of the strategic plan
- Growing the staff and program infrastructure to implement the plan
What Social Velocity Delivered
A 3-year strategic plan with goals, objectives, budget and detailed operational plan
Monthly phone and in-person coaching to the Executive Director and Development Director on:
Restructuring the advisory board
Creating a major donor fundraising campaign
Implementing the strategic plan
Using the strategic plan to filter future decisions
Effectively using staff resources
Literacy First tripled the number of students served by their program. They significantly grew financial commitments from their school district partners and successfully grew their individual major donors with the engagement of a restructured and larger advisory board and new staff. Staff and advisory board are energized and focused on continuing growth.