ACCELERATE CHANGE

Functional Organizing: The Secret of Scale

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The largest membership organizations in the world all share the same organizing model: functional organizing. Functional organizations attract members with benefits and services and then build on this base to advocate for their members.

From churches to AARP to professional associations to YMCAs to labor unions to business associations, all the major membership organizations in the world are functional organizations—providing material and social benefits for members, whether that be discounts, fellowship, business services, or collective bargaining.

Once these functional organizations have developed deep, trusted relationships with their members, they can activate them for civic engagement and advocacy.

However, the crux of their relationship continues to rely on providing relevant services and benefits for their members.

In order to engage tens of millions of Americans in civic life, we need new functional organizing institutions that provide services and benefits that meet the daily needs of Americans.​

Once these functional organizations have developed deep, trusted relationships with their members, they can activate them for civic engagement and advocacy. However, the crux of their relationship continues to rely on providing relevant services and benefits for their members.

Through services and benefits, functional organizations also develop robust revenue models. Successful functional organizations turn their member services and benefits into high-growth businesses.

Accelerate Change helps funders think through creative ways to incorporate radical experimentation into their grantmaking. Check out our Funding Radical Experimentation Toolkit.

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About Us

Accelerate Change helps funders test new models​ ​for large-scale, self-sustainable citizen organizing ​initiatives. Our goal is to catalyze citizen organizing initiatives that engage millions of Americans in advancing social change.

Accelerate Change works with foundations and individual donors to incorporate scale and financial self-sustainability strategies into their grantmaking.

Accelerate Change works with funders to:
  • Identify scalable civic venture opportunities in their issue focus areas;
  • Help grantees test new models for building membership, generating revenue, and growing to scale;
  • Incorporate financial self-sustainability strategies into their grantmaking.

Meet the Team

Peter Murray

Founder / President

Steve Ma

Senior Partner

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info@acceleratechange.org