Generating ideas, connections, and action

LLC Staff's blog

Guest Blog Post: Collective Impact: Emerging Issues and Challenges from the Field

By Beth Tener, New Directions Collaborative

Last week, the Leadership Learning Community sponsored a beautifully-facilitated gathering in Boston to celebrate the launch of its new publication Leadership & Collective Impact. The room of about 25 people included network weavers, organizational consultants, funders, writers, community organizers – all working in some way to advance collective impact and network approaches to social change.
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Inter-Organizational Network Learning: Assessment Strategies Webinar Series


For inter-organizational networks, learning is usually a key activity.  This is true for in particular for Global Action Networks (GANs), which are global, multi-stakeholder change networks.  Even activities usually not associated with formal learning, such as meetings, often have learning as a key motivation. read more »

Go to the webinar site>>

Guest Blog Post: Objective Met: Reflections on My Participation in the LLC Funder-Evaluator Meeting

By: Chris Matter, ClearWay Minnesota

An invitation was received to attend the LLC Funders/Evaluators Learning Circle Meeting held in Minneapolis. I looked at the meeting objectives and thought, was this going to be another daylong session where we all share our experiences and then I never see or communicate with these folks again? The meeting objectives were aligned with my work as a Program Manager involved in funding a Leadership Institute designed to build the capacity of priority populations in Minnesota to more effectively respond to tobacco issues and to help reduce commercial tobacco and other health-related disparities.  All three objectives had direct relevance for me and included:  “to harvest lessons about leadership strategies for investing in and evaluating leadership and leadership development; to share investment and evaluation approaches to better understand community results; and to create connections and learning partnerships among leadership funders and evaluators committed to learning about how best to grow community impact.” However, the reason I hit send on the registration button was that there was an objective supporting the development of my partnerships. As a funder, we strive to create spaces for grantees to develop relationships, but we don’t always take the time to do this amongst ourselves as funders and to include our evaluation colleagues in the discussion. This meeting was an opportunity for me to meet new colleagues and hopefully create new relationships.

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2012 Webinar: Going After Big Results: A Different Take on Leadership Development | Follow-Up Blog with Jolie Bain Pillsbury

SCI Triangle

By: Jolie Bain Pillsbury of Sherbrooke Consulting, Inc

I wanted to follow up on two related issues touched on during the webinar: “Going After Big Results: A Different Take on Leadership Development”.  The two related issues are that of the development of sustainable collaborative relationships and the development of collaborative leadership.  The two are related in the following way: collaborative leadership is not a solitary act.  It only exists in the context of a group of leaders in relationship with each other and is an “emergent” property of the group. Collaborative leadership skills create the capacity for the leaders to form relationships across boundaries for the purpose of making a difference. read more »

New Report | Leadership and Networks: New Ways of Developing Leadership in a Highly Connected World


As part of the Leadership for a New Era (LNE) initiative, the Leadership Learning Community has partnered with thought leaders in the network development and leadership development fields to develop the cutting edge report Leadership and Networks: New Ways of Developing Leadership in a Highly Connected World. This publication is funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.

Specifically, the report addresses the following questions: read more »

  • Why do network strategies deserve our attention?
  • Why do we need a new leadership mindset?
  • What are the core principles of leading with a network mindset?
  • What leadership development strategies support a network mindset and skills?

Download the Report

Call for Papers on Leadership Development for The Foundation Review | Deadline Extended!

Call for Papers: Volume 5, Issue 3

Abstracts of up to 250 words are being solicited for Volume 5, Issue 3 of The Foundation Review.  This issue will be a themed issue on Leadership Development. Foundations have supported nonprofit leadership development for many years through a variety of mechanisms, such as operated programs, general capacity development grants, targeted grants and sabbatical programs. Leadership programs may focus on general leadership development or be targeted to developing leaders within a specific content area, such as environmental leadership, arts leadership, etc.  More recently, programs have aimed to foster community leadership.

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Register for the Leadership Learning Community Bay Area and Boston Meetings on Leadership and Collective Impact

To celebrate the publication of the how-to series on leadership and collective impact (, we are convening Bay Area and Boston funders, practitioners and evaluators to focus learning on how to invest in, design, implement and assess leadership development processes that build relationships, catalyze networks, and benefit communities.


Registration Links Below read more »

2012 Webinar: Global Action Networks | Follow-Up Blog with Steve Waddell


Global Action Networks: a Breakthrough Innovation
By Steve Waddell of Networking Action: Organizing for the 21st Century

Steve Waddell follows up on his recent webinar Global Action Networks, and provides links to resources and information on the upcoming Virtual Course: Network Development Challenges below.

Common good global action has never broken down:  only with globalization do we understand the need to build it up.  Some lament the lack of global government to address critical issues and opportunities, some theorize about the way global government should be developed, and some are actively creating new ways to take decisions and action for the global common good.  The way that interests me most is Global Action Networks (GANs).  These are emerging as meta-networks, catching in their webs the vast variety of organizations that exist, including governments, corporations and NGOs.  They are an organizational innovation that will undoubtedly become increasingly important. read more »

2012 Webinar: Going After Big Results: A Different Take on Leadership Development | Monday, November, 19 2012

Presenter: Jolie Bain Pillsbury

Topic: Going After Big Results: A Different Take on Leadership Development

Date: Monday, November, 19 2012 | 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM PDT

The Leadership Learning Community is committed to promoting leadership approaches that are more inclusive, networked and collective.  Innovative programs that focus leadership supports on people who want to make change together (and not just on individuals) are achieving more impressive improvements in the well being of people and communities.  One thing that these programs have in common is a willingness to put a stake in the ground committing to a significant community benefit and they support individuals and organizations in the process of aligning and learning from their efforts to bring about this change.  One program that you will come across frequently in LLC’s writing because it successfully integrates these elements is the Leadership in Action Program funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.  The program is informed by and tests a solid leadership theory, The Theory of Aligned Contribution developed by Jolie Bain Pillsbury.  We are happy to have Jolie as a guest presenting this theory and her research findings which have broad application to people passionate about leadership development and social change that produces measurable results for communities.

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2012 Webinar: Global Action Networks | Monday, October 22, 2012

Presenter: Steve Waddell

Topic: Global Action Networks

Date: Monday, October 22, 2012 | 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM PDT

In this webinar, Steve Waddell presents present GANs as emerging "meta-networks", catching in their webs literally all organizations in the world.  Learn how you might work with them locally, regionally or globally to realize your goals. Steve has spent over a decade working with one strategy he calls Global Action Networks that is fast advancing from periphery to center, because of its promise to address seemingly intractible change challenges. read more »

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