The Collective Impact Forum podcast will share with you stories, insights, and expertise from those in the field working on collective impact efforts. By working across sectors to share experiences and knowledge, together we can help accelerate the effectiveness and further adoption of the collective impact approach.

For collective impact to succeed, groups must be as rigorous about building culture as they are about building impact strategies.

Nonprofits have often been incentivized to demonstrate they are better than everyone else, over-promise on their initiatives, claim sole credit for any successes, and hide mistakes and failures–especially when working with funders. Leaders and groups must learn to lead in ways that allow for more honesty and vulnerability, and work through power dynamics and turf issues. Collective impact requires a culture that develops and rewards authentic, inclusive, and collaborative leadership; helps leaders work better together across differences; and engages community members as assets and partners in solving community problems.

Paul Schmitz, Senior Advisor to the Collective Impact Forum and former CEO of Public Allies, discusses some of the key conditions needed to build an authentic and inclusive culture within a collective impact initiative.

Resources Related to this Podcast

During the presentation, Paul shares three introduction questions that, when asked, can help you get beyond the "name, title, organization" introductions and help build deeper relationships.

View the full presentation: The Culture of Collective Impact (PDF)

Other Related Resources

Collective Impact Forum Podcast Episode 005

0 -1:40: Episode Introduction
1:41 - 51:45: The Culture of Collective Impact - A Presentation by Paul Schmitz
51:48 - 52:50: Outro

View all Forum podcast episodes

Music featured in this episode:
"Light Through" by Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

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