Executive Transition Toolkits and Overview

Toolkit | Monograph Series | Articles

Executive Transition InitiativeIn addition to the individual client service work that Leading Transitions performs, I founded the Executive Transitions Initiative (ETI) in Wisconsin. This project was truly groundbreaking and very rare among other cities in the country.

Executive Transition is one issue that impacts every type of nonprofit, large or small, and with any type of mission. One of the primary goals of ETI was to create systemic change in nonprofits whereby executive directors, boards of directors and funders value and support the importance of effective executive transition management (as opposed to the more limited search and hire approaches). There is no time more risky and uncertain than when a leader leaves without a succession plan. In fact, when nonprofit board members are interviewed about what they most dislike about their volunteer work, they most frequently cite fund raising and hiring an executive director. What is often overlooked during executive change is the unique opportunity to build donor confidence in the organization, decrease board isolation, and transform the organization in preparation for the future.

Foundations have a vested interest in strengthening leadership and organizational capacity within Milwaukee’s nonprofit community to prepare for the upcoming wave of executive director transitions. Executive transition management provides for more effective transitions in the short term and more successful organizations in the long term.

Executive Transition Initiative Succession Planning Toolkit

Executive Transition Initiative

1. Overview of Succession Planning (PDF)
2. Departure Defined Transition Toolkit (PDF)
3. Emergency Succession Planning Toolkit (PDF)
4. Strategic Leadership Development Toolkit (PDF)

Executive Transition Initiative Monograph Series

Executive Transition Initiative
Volume I
Capturing the Power of Leadership Change (PDF)
by Tom Adams, TransitionGuides

Executive Transition Initiative
Volume II
Interim Executive Directors, The Power in the Middle (PDF)
by Tim Wolfred, CompassPoint

Executive Transition Initiative
Volume III
Founder Transitions: Creating Good Endings and New Beginnings (PDF)
by Tom Adams, TransitionGuides

Executive Transition Initiative
Volume IV
Up Next: Generation Change and the Leadership of Nonprofit Organization (PDF)
by Frances Kunreuther, Building Movement Project

Executive Transition Initiative
Volume V
Stepping Up, Staying Engaged (PDF)
by Tom Adams, TransitionGuides

Executive Transition Initiative in the News

Executive Transition Initiative
Featured in the February 2006 edition of Milwaukee Magazine's Charitable Events Guide. (PDF)

Executive Transition Initiative
Featured in the February 2007 edition of Milwaukee Magazine's Charitable Events Guide. (PDF)

Explore a relationship with Leading Transitions today: 414.228.9860  |


"Although still early in our re-org process, it appears clear I owe you.

I’m certainly feeling much more optimistic regarding the opportunities that might be possible during this challenging time of transition. Thank you for your insights, connections, and support."
"Mindy, thank you so much. It has been such a pleasure to work with you. Thank you for your flexibility. I have so enjoyed working with the staff and our boards since I took the interim role. We are in a better place today and I am very appreciative of all of the work our staff has done to get us here. It is a wonderful job. I look forward to our future. Thanks again for everything."
"Thank you so much for your time and inspiration today. Knowing how many calls you get like mine, I truly appreciate the time you took to network and to provide me with a road map on how to start transitioning my career. Thank you for making the world a better place."
"Mindy is a life changing human
who is incredible in this community."
"I genuinely appreciated the time you gave me and the candid information you provided. It was very helpful and will hopefully help me make a more informed decision.
I will be in touch."
"I saw the person you referred me to yesterday and was reflecting on how much I value knowing her and learning from her. Without your introduction, I don’t know if that would have happened. Thank you for being a connector, such a strong judge of character, and for adding to the joy in my own life."
"I could not be more grateful for your encouragement and coaching. You're THE BEST. I can't say it loudly enough. I couldn't be more grateful for your how selflessly you've supported and guided me."
"Thank you for spending some of your valuable time with me yesterday. I enjoyed my conversation with you and learning more about your organization and the direction you provide nonprofits to navigate transition."
"Thank you so much for your support today – and every day, for that matter. Your smile, positive attitude, and passion for our organization is so inspiring. I appreciate having you in my life!"
"Getting to know you personally, and prevailing upon your insight into the non-profit world of Milwaukee has been one of the greatest gifts of this summer and fall. Your generosity has allowed me opportunities for participation and service that are immeasurable as a result of your guidance. I am really excited about this new chapter, and especially the chances you have given me to impact the issues and organizations I care most about. I am deeply grateful for everything."
"We were so fortunate to have you speak to our members, and I appreciate your time and effort in preparing for us. You excel at speaking and taking the time to know your audience - THANK YOU. I look forward to our paths crossing again soon."


"Many thanks for sharing your wealth of knowledge and experience at today's executive transitions program. You did a terrific job leading the discussion and keeping the conversation flowing and focused."