Booth Alumni Nonprofit Consultants (BANC)
Our mission is to leverage pro bono consulting services from Booth alumni to help nonprofits achieve their goals.
Who We Are
BANC is a Chicago Booth initiative collaboratively developed and backed by the Dean, the Office of Alumni Relations, and the Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation.
BANC was created when Booth alumnae Gayle Haller, ’87 and Judy Maley, ’84 saw an opportunity to match the desire among Booth alumni to give back to their communities with the need for external help expressed by nonprofit organizations.
BANC was launched with two pilot projects in Fall 2015.
What We Offer
Nonprofits: BANC offers Chicago-based nonprofits the opportunity to tap into Booth alumni skills by providing pro bono consulting in a number of areas: Strategic Planning, Financial Planning & Sustainability, Marketing, Program Growth Strategies, and Social Enterprise.
Alumni: BANC offers Chicago-area Booth alumni pro bono opportunities to help nonprofits, deepen their knowledge of the nonprofit sector, and to connect with fellow Booth graduates.
Consulting projects typically have four to six consultants and are completed over six months.
New BANC Projects
Erikson Institute (Chicago, IL)
Project: Develop marketing plan for the Continuing Education department
Erikson Institute is the premier graduate school in child development and a leader in continuing education for professionals who work with young children and their families.
The BANC team will conduct primary market research, analyze the competitive landscape, and complete a SWOT in order to deliver a targeted marketing plan.
Market Research - Survey Monkey skills appreciated
Marketing and/or Product Management
Margaret’s Village (Chicago, IL)
Project: Assess and make recommendations for social enterprise opportunities in order to provide reliable revenue stream for its nonprofit mission
Margaret’s Village provides transitional housing for homeless women, children and families and offers experiences that empower, support and transform women and the broader community so they can achieve their highest potential.
The BANC team will examine, vet and prioritize social enterprise opportunities, conduct interviews with community stakeholders, staff and other nonprofits that have successful social enterprise initiatives in Margaret’s Village’s area of interest. Team will select one or two that are a best fit and develop a financial and business model that produces a viable revenue stream to further its mission.
National Society for the Prevention of Blindness (Chicago, IL)
Project: Develop a data dashboard that communicates mission effectiveness
Formerly known as Prevent Blindness, they are dedicated to preventing blindness and preserving sight across all age spectrums and multiple eye conditions.
BANC consultants will determine the strategic data and presentation format system needed in order to communicate mission impact to funders, donors and other key stakeholders. The team will conduct interviews of staff, funders and other stakeholders and research other nonprofits that provide best-in-class data collection methods and reporting systems.
Development of Non-Financial Metrics
Software Applications and Database Navigation
Thresholds (Chicago, IL)
Project: Prepare financial models and build a sustainability plan for its Substance Use Program.
Thresholds is one of Illinois’ oldest and largest providers of healthcare services for persons with severe mental illness and substance use disorders.
The BANC team will conduct a financial analysis and build a sustainability plan for its Substance Use Program. The team will interview its two current clinics staff and other substance use program operators in order to understand their operating models, cost drivers and revenue sources. The team will build a financial model that incorporates learnings and provide recommendations to achieve long-term sustainability.
What We Have Accomplished
BANC consultants have successfully completed six projects:
- Strategic growth plan for an economic development organization
- Process map and financial software management system recommendations for a social services organization
- Promotion and pricing strategy for a growing social services organization that serves Illinois’ most at risk citizens
- Positioning, promotion and pricing strategy for a highly regarded Chicago-based early childhood program.
- Marketing plan to help a Chicago theater with two proposed strategic partnerships with the goal of increasing theater audiences at specific performances.
- Key messages update for a housing program for low income seniors to better communicate its mission and services.
Who We Work With
BANC seeks to work with nonprofits that have the ability to provide meaningful projects and implement consultant recommendations. To be considered, nonprofits must meet the following criteria:
- Be a 501(c)3 or operate in the public sector with an annual budget of $500,000 or more
- Have a full-time, paid executive director who has been in place for at least one year
- Have enough capacity to implement the BANC recommendations, and not be undergoing a leadership transition
- Assign a staff member and backup who will be dedicated to working with the BANC consultants
- Be located in the Chicago area
- Have project leaders from the organization who are flexible to meet after hours
Clients are chosen based on both the quality of the project and the ability of the engagement to attract volunteers.
Who We Look For
BANC is seeking committed Booth alumni with a desire to use their management skills to benefit nonprofits through pro bono consulting projects. The projects typically utilize expertise in a wide variety of areas. We match the needs of the project with the skills required to complete the consultancy.
Alumni who have worked on previous BANC projects have had skills in the following areas: management consulting, market research, product and business development, technology consulting, financial systems management, financial analysis, communications, and sales.
Booth alumni in all stages of life’s journey are welcome to apply: professionals and entrepreneurs looking to give back to the community and to understand challenges unique to nonprofits, millennials, stay-at-home parents, retirees, and alumni looking to strengthen bonds with the entire Booth community.
Alumni applicants will be matched with projects depending on skill sets and project needs.
What We Look For
BANC Consultants apply and are chosen on a rolling basis. Volunteers come from a range of backgrounds but share a strong desire to use their Booth skills to help the community. In addition to that passion, we look for:
- An average commitment of two to four hours a week for up to six months beginning from the start date of the project. (This is an average estimate. Over the course of the project, some weeks will require more effort and other weeks none at all.)
- Individuals who have control over their schedules with the ability to meet with the clients in their Chicago offices during normal business hours. Teams can have between three to five meetings with their clients. If you travel regularly for business, you may want to a contact one of the BANC Directors at BANC@ChicagoBooth.edu to see if this program is right for you.
- Professional and collaborative attitude with clients and other volunteer consultants.
- Attendance at a training session in Chicago.
What Our Consultants Say
BANC volunteers report a strong sense of satisfaction in helping clients meet their specific challenges. Consultants also valued their experience for strengthening their understanding of the nonprofit space, for broadening their peer networks, and for the sheer fun of working with a team of Booth alumni.
If you are a Booth graduate or work in a nonprofit, we hope you will consider being part of a future BANC project. For further information about BANC, please email: BANC@ChicagoBooth.edu
“I thought the BANC team went above and beyond to assist us in our project and provided a product with great value for the future of the department.”
—Past client about working with BANC
“Volunteering for BANC was deeply satisfying. It was wonderful to help drive meaningful change, give back to the community, bond with fellow alumni, and continue to sharpen my skills.”
—Sujatha Shenoy, ’04