LEADERSHIP BEGINS WITH PEOPLE.

We take a human-centered approach integrating agile strategy, evaluation, and leadership so you can thrive in times of change.

CRAFTING STRATEGY

“Top down strategy isn’t good enough, we need to engage everyone in developing our strategy

The first step in actually implementing any strategic plan is usually to disrupt our widely accepted notion of what the strategic plan is and how it should function. Let’s not just plan for the future, let’s plan to remain flexible in the present. Let’s not simply hypothesize about what comes next, but instead develop tools for learning and experimentation so strategy becomes effective action. 

Together we work to engage all of your stakeholders, from your board room to your volunteers and everyone in-between, so you have the trust needed to connect more deeply with the people you serve.

Strategy is never done, it’s not an annual event, it’s got to be ongoing. Agile strategy is the integration of strategy and execution–it’s how to be strategic and do strategy.

 

 

We love helping with:

  • Craft your mission, vision, and values
  • Build a social change playbook
  • Create a visual theory of change and logic model
  • Do strategic planning
  • Identify measurable short, mid, and long-range outcomes
  • Define objectives and key results (OKRs) to connect strategy to action
  • Connect your strategy to practical action and meaningful data
  • Facilitate interactive retreats, strategy sprints, and coaching workshops

LEAN DATA + PRACTICAL EVALUATION

“We need to be more data-informed in our decision-making, WITHOUT turning our people into numbers.”

 

 

Measuring social impact is incredibly complex. Traditional evaluation practices are time-consuming and costly. The alternative is lean measurement — an approach that emphasizes creating value through efficient data collection, practical analysis, and storytelling that makes sense. Lean evaluation favors efficiency and relevance while maintaining accuracy. We believe that the best metrics are the ones you’ll actually use.

Instead of more traditional approaches, we focus on practical evaluation, which exists at the intersection of information-gathering, analysis, and decision-making. We help you work WITH your data so that it becomes a functional and useful component in your decision-making and your storytelling. We create practical, lean data solutions that build trust, improve your impact, and prove your growth. We’ll equip you to spend more time on insights and less time on data management.

Above all, we put people at the center of your evaluation strategy to ensure that you are measuring what matters most.

 

We love helping with:

  • Lean impact evaluation
  • Human-centered design sprints
  • Developing logic models
  • Customer Insights
  • Creating feedback loops
  • Data maturity and readiness assessments
  • Data process improvement
  • Database selection and project management
  • Survey design
  • Making meaning out of the data you have
  • Data visualization
  • Designing data dashboards
  • Facilitating interactive retreats and workshops
  • Grant strategy and grant writing

AGILE TRANSFORMATION

“Our people are burnt out, We are wasting time and money. We need to do work differently – move FASTER.”

Your most valuable work depends on teams of people who work well together and who feel connected to the work they’re doing and to each other. With a goal of sustainable improvement, that means flexible priorities, empowered employees, and everyday actions that link deeply to your big picture strategy.

When your organization begins your journey to transform to a more agile way of operating, we’ll begin wherever you are right now. An agile evolution is not one thing with a starting line and finishing point, it a process of continuous evolution and improvement to how you approach every aspect of your organization – both internal and external. Using the resources you already have, you’ll  have a deeper impact, less burnout, and more forward motion.

Agile is a mindset, not a set of rules. We help you BE agile over ‘doing’ agile.

An agile organization believes that it’s not only possible, but preferred to thrive in times of change. We teach you the practices that make the values and mindset of agile a reality. This is about becoming a learning organization committed to continuous improvement, stakeholder feedback, and the ability to adapt and grow, no matter what lies ahead.

Agile teams get more done, in less time, with higher quality.

 

We love helping with:

  • Discovering which agile practices are a good fit for your work
  • Changing the way you do project management
  • Launching a pilot agile team
  • Developing the maturity of new and seasoned ScrumMasters and Product Owners
  • Coaching leaders for agile management
  • Designing a human-centered story map for your next product or service design
  • Facilitating interactive agile/Scrum workshops
  • Scaling agile across your organization

OUR CLIENTS SAY:

 

“Brandi came to Capella to help us define, design, and execute a plan to mature our Agile practices in our web technologies team. When Brandi came on board, she quickly came up to speed on our culture, processes, and team/stakeholders which allowed her to add immediate value on multiple levels from team role definition to on the ground coaching to executive influence. Brandi brings not only a deep set of expertise in Agile, but she also brings tremendous experience in teaching which allows her to quickly build credibility and trust with the team and foster a continuous learning environment. Through Brandi’s engagement, we have seen direct, tangible benefits such improved cross functional team communication, streamlined releases in alignment with business expectations, increased focus and visibility to priorities, and overall improvement in team moral and engagements. Brandi is truly one of a kind… I am confident any Agile initiative she is a part of will be better off because of it.”

Tracy Smith

Vice President of Application Development, , Capella University

“Getting clear on the actual wording of my business purpose has been grounding, and it’s changed the conversations I’m having with customers and investors. It’s attracted more people to The Mother Love than I was able to do on my own in the previous two years. I’ve got clarity on where to invest my energy and how to shape my business in the next year.” Rebecca Egbert

CEO, The Mother Love

“Brandi possesses the unique skill set combination of vision, intellect, and the ability to truly listen. I’ve seen her listen to both groups of nonprofit board directors and front-line employees and create a clear map for the organization. She’s gifted at looking at your data and mission and then helping you execute the strategy. Brandi is also a joy to worth and brings the best out of any team she’s a part of.” Dean Caldwell-Tautges

Principal at Dean Caldwell-Tautges, Senior Vice President of Business Development & Operations, SpringFour

“For anyone that needs help thinking through their evaluation- from the approach to the actual metrics, I would highly recommend Brandi. Brandi is able to think about the final product and how multiple stakeholders will interact with it. I love that she puts youth at the center of her practice.” Samantha Grant

Evaluation Director, University of Minnesota, Center for Youth Development

“Strategic direction is too often missing within organizations, non-profits are no different. I found the impact mapping done by The Olson Group was a great process to go through and a valuable tool moving forward as our staff and board makes decisions that deliver the greatest impact. It was the clearest articulation of our work and how it is connected with our vision that I’ve seen in 10 years of being part of this organization.” Ross Cully

Board Chair, 99 Balloons/CEO, Harvest Group

“Brandi Olson Consulting provided a great balance of knowledge in the fields of youth development and data-driven program design. The impact measurement process resulted in our program having a clear connection between instruction, evaluation and ongoing quality improvement.” Joani Essenburg

Executive Director, Banyan Community

“The Olson Group far exceeded my expectations on the data visualization project we were working on together. I have been so impressed by Brandi’s professionalism, clear communication, and orientation to detail. She had an incredible vision, and she was able turn that vision into a finished and useful project. I look forward to working with her again in the future, and would highly recommend her!”

Kate Saumweber Hogan

Owner & Midwife, Twin Cities Midwifery, LLC

OUR CLIENTS INCLUDE:

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