Archive for August, 2014

Try Innoweave’s New Social Innovation Micro-Tools

Considering working with Innoweave to help enhance your impact? Need a quick assessment of how a new social innovation could advance your mission? Innoweave has been compiling and adapting new micro-tools, developed by world leading organizations including Nesta, Rockefeller Foundation, and IDEO. Try them out and see how they can help you foster social innovation.

The new Innoweave Social Innovation Micro-tools are easy, brief team exercises that can help organization leaders better understand the key elements involved in taking on a new social innovation. Using these micro-tools allows teams to explore different issues which impact their organization, and offer insight which supports application of social innovations that enhance impact.

These exercises are designed to help teams foster social innovation within their organizations, and contribute to their success as they work through Innoweave modules. All the micro-tools can be accessed through our Social Innovation Micro-tools site.

Here you’ll find the information on each of the available sets of micro-tools, and guidance on how to use them. Micro-tools have been created to help with developing a theory of change, understanding end users, target groups and potential customers, and developing business or engagement plans.

How can I use these to advance my mission?

These quick exercises can be used in many different ways – in almost any situation in which you feel they may add value to your work. The core purpose of the tools is to foster discussion among the leadership team, to help teams explore new concepts, or even just present different ways of thinking about a challenge.

1. Visit the Social Innovation Micro-tools site and select a micro-tool from the available list, based upon the accompanying descriptions of what you want to accomplish through the exercise.

For example, the Stakeholder Visualization micro-tool is used to gain perspective on how others may view your social challenge, or the intended impact you want to create.

SI tool

2.  Download the simple exercise from the website, read the guidance and instructions, and complete the one-page worksheet by answering each question contained within.

For this micro-tool, the questions lay out some of the issues you may want to consider to gain stakeholder insight, and looks at how stakeholders may react to some of your ideas.

3. Use the outcomes of the exercise as a discussion point among you team, as you consider working through an Innoweave module, or other impact-enhancing social innovation work.

If you like, some micro-tools have customized versions to fit with specific issues areas (e.g. stakeholder visualization for potential Social Enterprise customers and Constructive Engagement targets) to better hone your discussion.

What’s Next?

We will be adding new sets of micro-tools as we progress, and look forward to sharing them with you as well. As Innoweave continues to grow the available selection of micro-tools we will be looking to improve our supporting materials for them. If you have any thoughts or comments on the micro-tools, please feel free to share them with us at

Innoweave has worked to adapt the Social Innovation Micro-tool from the DIY Toolkit, put together by Nesta and the Rockefeller Foundation, to whom much credit and thanks is owed.


How to Become an Innoweave Coach

As Innoweave continues to support more organizations to access new tools and approaches to Social Innovation, it has become evident that a key factor to our success  is our “community of coaches”. Time and time again participants of the program have told us about the quality of the coaching they have received and how it has been essential to the success of the ongoing implementation of an approach in their organization.

Through the program’s expansion, we are working with more individuals who have the skills and experience in a particular approach that Innoweave offers and who share a passion and commitment to building a stronger non for profit sector as partners with Innoweave.

As a registered coach with Innoweave, you will work with agency specific teams to help them implement an action oriented approach within their organization.

“The coaching model offers real value in that it supports an organization to achieve specific goals in tandem with growing its internal capacity and knowledge.  In the role of a coach, I focus on guiding, supporting, and innovating with an organization so both the process and the outcome have impact.” – Brenda Richardson, Social Enterprise Sector Developer, CISED and Innoweave Social Enterprise Coach

So, how do you become a coach, and what are the benefits?

First, it is important to understand the Innoweave process. As you will see from the graphic below, organizations will generally go through a 5 step process towards implementing a particular approach.

process graphic

After reviewing information through our website and webinars, and taking an online self-assessment, organizations attend a workshop in particular approach. In these workshops teams from participating organizations develop actionable next steps to implement an approach. For example, a team coming out of a Social Enterprise workshop would have developed a draft feasibility study and business plan, and a team who had participated in the Constructive Engagement workshop would have the beginnings of an engagement plan.

We then ask organizations to connect with a Innoweave coach from our online database of registered coaches, select someone who fits their needs, and then develop a plan to build off the work the organization has begun to develop in the workshop. Organizations select a coach by reviewing the online database of coaches, undertaking due diligence to determine the suitability and fit of the coach with the goals of their organization (often phone/in-person interviews), and indicating on their application for an Innoweave Implementation Grant which coach they would prefer.  Once organizations have identified a coach they would like to work with and decided upon the terms of their working arrangements, they can then apply for an Innoweave Implementation Grant designed to subsidize the cost of the coach.

(note: as an Innoweave Coach, opportunities to facilitate content specific workshops may also be available.)

Who should register?

We are looking for consultants, entrepreneurs, content experts, and sector leaders with the knowledge and skills to help work with interested community sector organizations to implement a specific tool or approach currently offered by Innoweave. These include, Collective Impact, Scaling Impact, Social Enterprise, Social Finance, Outcomes Finance, Developmental Evaluation, Cloud Computing, Constructive Engagement and Impact & Strategic Clarity .

How do I register to become a coach?

To register to become a coach, you can click here to be directed to our online registry where you will be asked to provide a short bio outlining your experience and expertise in a particular approach, your experience working and coaching community sector organizations (including listing organizations you have worked with in the past), and the geographic area you are interested in serving.

Once you have provided Innoweave with the information above, you will be listed on our database from which organizations can select you to become a coach.

What is the benefit to becoming an Innoweave coach?

More and more organizations are seeing the inherent value in the process developed by Innoweave. We are a platform for organizations who are ready to implement new approaches and increase their impact, and  for consultants, entrepreneurs, content experts, and sector leaders who want to help them achieve their goals. Our process connects these two groups and supports them with Innoweave Implementation Grants.

Becoming an Innoweave coach also connects you with the growing number of other leaders working in this sector, and provides forums and tools for sharing and developing strong communities of practice.

“I have been working in the community sector for almost 20 years, so I know the issues well and have long standing relationships with many of the great people working on social change. What I really like about being an Innoweave coach is belonging to a larger team – learning from my colleagues and friends – as well as being part of something bigger. By working together, I think we have the potential to have a greater impact, and can help create the change we want to see in the world. It is important to be able to support each other in our everyday work which can be challenging and stressful. I appreciate Innoweave’s openness to new ideas and ways of working together, which means that we are continually adapting and improving  our approaches to respond to the needs of the organizations we work with.” – Lara Evoy, Managing Partner, Lara Evoy & Stephanie Garrow: Strategic Consulting

If you have an interest in becoming an Innoweave Coach, please visit  our website at and register by clicking here.

* Please note, the process for becoming a Impact & Strategic Clarity coach does not follow the same process as the other modules. For more information, you can email us at