The Goal

We help businesses and non-profits become sustainable. Many organizations begin with a strong vision and structure in place but over time these calcify and it becomes less able to seize opportunities and dodge curve balls. External factors, such as changes in the economic environment or new government policies and internal factors, such as interpersonal conflicts or burnout, are constants. Effective organizations not only learn to address fluctuations, but develop internal structures in order to anticipate and adapt to them as part of their normal business practice. The goal is not just to sustain, but also to effectively serve the needs of the customers or clients on an ongoing basis.

The Methods 

Whether the work is strategic planning, board development or a more targeted endeavor, we rely on four key principles to guide our work.

Self Determination

People need to be in charge of decisions that impact their lives. An effective organization requires the full participation of everyone involved. We begin with a series of conversations with all stakeholders to generate a better understanding of the current state of affairs.

Communication

It's the life-blood of a healthy system. It’s not enough to have one good conversation or even a series of conversations. We help the organization develop appropriate structures for ongoing communication, not just more meetings.

Accountability

People are most accountable to themselves and the people directly around them. Peer-based accountability practices such as personal goal setting and 360 reviews foster enhanced buy-in and participation.

Transparency

The best decisions come from a full understanding of various perspectives. We work with organizations to provide more useful information to stakeholders and then by facilitating group discussions and interviews, we help people impacted by changes voice their ideas, concerns and interests.


Partial List of Clients

  • City of Asheville Downtown Master Planning Group

  • City of Asheville Transit Commission

  • City of Asheville Multi-Modal Commission

  • Community Action Opportunities

  • Southern Highlands Craft Guild

  • Tri-Area Health Centers

  • YWCA of Asheville

REQUEST A CONSULT

For more information please contact Sara to discuss your situation.

We hired Sara to help with the Downtown Master Plan planning process when we were at a critical juncture. Advocates of different positions were very divided over the plan and it’s current direction. Sara was able to facilitate meetings with very strong personalities and reach the best compromise that the group was going to be able to make. Sara was great in maintaining neutrality, building relationships with participants, and facilitating the conversation. I would recommend her highly!
— Sasha Vrtunski, Project Manager at Alexandra Vrtunski, AICP
Sara has been a valuable partner for Southern Highlands Craft Guild in our year-long strategic planning process. She went above and beyond her official role as facilitator, taking a genuine interest in our organization and its members, providing guidance and counsel on general nonprofit issues relevant to the planning process, and keeping our diverse board on track, on focus, and on the schedule we set at the beginning. We just presented our three-year plan at the Guild’s annual meeting, and the feedback from our membership has been overwhelmingly positive. Our board and staff genuinely enjoyed working with Sara. We hope to have an opportunity to work with her again in the future”
— Teresa Britain, Southern Highland Craft Guild