INK Consulting Blog

INK Consulting’s mission is to help nonprofit organizations realize the potential of all relationships. INK combines hands-on experience, strategic thinking and a healthy view of the big picture to help nonprofits create an organizational culture of concentrating on what really drives mission success: relationships.

Calling All (Logic Model) Nerds


I’m a true believer that you can’t get anywhere without a map. (I can hear my husband laughing now because I’m the most directionally challenged person on the planet. I love my GPS.) But, in nonprofit speak — which is my favorite lingo! — you have to know how you plan to get where you are going. Ah, behold the logic model.

You can find endless logic model examples on Google, Wikipedia and the like. Nell Edgington at Social Velocity has a great tool that I highly recommend, a step-by-step guide for Creating a Theory of Change. Logic models are crucial tools that help businesses and nonprofits alike. I mean, sometimes I use a logic model to think about how I might attack my day. But I’m a logic model nerd, so…

I’ve been posting about the importance of relationships for nonprofits, believing that relationships are important and what a relationship-focused nonprofit looks like. All that is great… but it leads to the impending question, so HOW do we get there? We believe, we believe, we believe in the power of relationships! But now what…?

Obviously (or at least I hope it is obvious…) making the change to becoming relationship-centric is not easy. It will not happen overnight. It will not be a quick fix. It takes time. And you have to have a map to get there. A really, really, really good map.

Enter the logic model.

A basic logic model has four pillars:

  • Inputs: What are the resources we’ll need?
  • Activities/Tactics: What do we need to do to get to our destination?
  • Outputs: What will be produced from the things that we’ll do to get to our destination?
  • Outcome: What will be the result of our effort?

I like to share practical examples, so here is a logic model that I created for United Way of Greater Los Angeles. They are currently working toward becoming a relationship-centric organization and are making great progress. UWGLA is an incredible organization focused on fighting poverty. I believe that they will be a game changer in the nonprofit world. Anyway, you can see the desired outcome of their focus on building relationships is that their mission will be successful (Creating Pathways out of Poverty = CPOP).

Take a look:

As always… I hope that this post gave you something to act on, some ideas or some inspiration. Please share your thoughts or questions in the comments section.


2 thoughts on “Calling All (Logic Model) Nerds

  1. Shannon, thanks so much for recommending the Social Velocity Creating a Theory of Change step-by-step guide, I really appreciate it! I admit it, I’m a logic model nerd too, and I’d love to see more nonprofit organization’s embracing the power of a theory of change. Thanks for sharing your great insights!

    • Nell, I’m a huge fan of your work. Thanks for your nice comment! I’ll look forward to staying connected to you so that we can all do our part to help nonprofits!

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