ACE Capstone Leadership Programme for Non-Profits

ACE Capstone Leadership Programme for Non-Profits is the pinnacle leadership development programme that sets out to groom strategic leaders in the non-profit sector. This unique programme for current and potential Executive Directors adopts a practical and highly experiential form of learning, enabling them to test out different approaches and ideas while receiving coaching and feedback.

The programme provides you with opportunities to network with senior leaders in the sector for possible collaboration and to work on innovative solutions that can influence policies at national level through Action Learning Project. Such initiatives will also help to a raise the overall capabilities of the non-profit sector to improve the lives of beneficiaries.

Jointly developed by the Tote Board and the Social Service Institute (SSI), the programme combines the strengths of three leadership programme providers, namely, Aalto University (Finland), Singapore Management University (Lien Centre for Social Innovation, SMU) and the Centre for Non-Profit Leadership (CNPL). On the foundation of this strategic alliance and collaboration, you can expect a high level of active experiential facilitated learning in the Learning Lab modules, executive coaching sessions and evaluations, and the opportunity to work on a practical issue facing the non-profit sector.

+ Who Should Attend?

ACE Capstone Leadership Programme for Non-Profits is specially designed for current and potential executive directors, and officers of equivalent responsibilities, in non-profit organisations and social enterprises. Representatives of registered charities AND applicants from social enterprises that are members of raiSE are eligible to attend the programme and entitled to Tote Board’s subsidy. 

Applicants may be shortlisted for an interview and will be duly notified via email.
+ Participant's Journey
Note: To be awarded the certificate for ACE Capstone Leadership Programme for Non-Profits, you must fully complete all the activities stated in the Participant's Journey within the stipulated time frame.

Three Pronged Approach
Learning Lab Sessions Executive Coaching & Development Centre Action Learning Projects (ALPs)
enable you to discuss cases and best practices of functional competencies needed to lead your organisations. These specially designed sessions are delivered by a strong and experienced suite of international and local industry experts and faculty members. personalises the learning journey for every participant. Through CNPL’s programme, you will be better able to understand, the key competencies needed to become a high performing non-profit leader. The pre-and-post Leadership Surveys and Development Centre will enable you to identify strengths and receive feedback on developmental areas. There will be 4 sessions of one-to-one executive coaching by credentialed coaches from the International Coach Federation (ICF) to assist you in designing an action plan to further your professional development. facilitate real-time, real-work authentic opportunities for you to practise and apply what you have learnt and to work in groups on projects that may lead to sector wide impact and influence policy at national level.
+ Programme Schedule
1 Mar 2019, Fri 6 hours
(11.30am to 5.30pm)
On-Boarding Session
Participants will be introduced to the different components of the ACE programme and kick-start of Action Learning Project.
End Feb-Mar 2019 Online Completion of Online Leadership Assessment & 180 Degree Feedback 
The online leadership assessment & 180 degree feedback will enable participants to identify their strengths in their personal characteristics and areas of leadership competency.
3 or 4 Apr 2019, Wed or Thurs 1.0 day
(8.30am to 5pm)
Development Centre Session
The Development Centre is a full day experiential programme. The participants will go through different simulation activities reflecting a possible workday. As they go through the activities, assessors will be on hand to observe and in some cases, role-play with them. The assessors prepare a report which includes robust feedback on the behaviours observed during the day.
12 Apr 2019, Fri 1.0 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)
Randy Salzman
Randy Salzman
Darden School of Business
University of Virginia
Design Thinking 
Design thinking provides non-profit and social service organisations a way to deeply understand the unmet needs of the community they care about, dream about new and creative ideas and to co-create solutions with them. Both local and overseas examples of design thinking has shown time and again how it can unlock collaboration between unlikely stakeholders to create real social impact on the ground. Design thinking is versatile – its tools and techniques can be applied in service delivery, fund-raising, marketing, talent attraction, and in situations where budget, manpower or resources are limited. This one-day course provides an appreciation of how design thinking can help you innovate new ways to better serve your community.
22 Apr 2019, Mon

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
1.0 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)

Peter Morgan
Healthcare Strategy and Information Technology Consultant and Director
Gevity, SE Asia Branch
Strategic Planning 
Alignment with the vision of the organisation is vital for effective strategy development. This module equips non-profit leaders with useful frameworks, methodologies and tools to identify the right pathways and to evaluate crossroads on the strategic roadmap towards organisational sustainability and success.
23 & 24 Apr 2019, Tue & Wed

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
1.5 day
(Day 1: 9.30am to 5.30pm, 
Day 2: 
9.30am to 1.00pm) 

Dr Nick Zubanov
Organisational Economics
University of Konstanz (Germany)
Data-Driven Strategic Decision Making
Our increasingly complex society brings more and more challenging policy and resource deployment issues for various social service programmes that are not easily solved. Forecasting is one tool that provides the ability to project the results and resource requirements and is an important part of the performance management process. Forecasting blends marketplace and operational data to project what is most likely to happen based on different scenarios. This module will introduce the principles of qualitative and quantitative methods of forecasting. Participants will learn the different ways data is captured, cleaned and visualised, as well as various quantitative techniques that can be used to make a forecast.
8 May 2019, Wed

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
1 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)

Shawn O’Hara

O'Hara Management Consultants
Integrated Fundraising 
Fundraising is the lifeblood that strengthens the non-profit organisation. This module will demonstrate how an integrated approach towards fundraising is highly effective and sustainable, encompassing various strategies and methodologies, as well as concepts such as the donor pyramid and the psychology of giving
9 May 2019, Thurs 1 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)
Facilitator to be confirmed later Strategic Branding 
A differentiated brand identity creates an imagery of associations, memories, and the satisfaction of participation. This module will help participants appreciate and apply the principles which strong brands adopt. It expounds upon the concept of cause-branding as a strategy and, within this framework, delves into how stakeholders should be managed so that buy-in and partnerships are established over the longer term with strong positive perceptions.
10 May 2019, Fri

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
1 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)

Emily Perkin
Managing Director
Just Cause
Assessing Social Impact
Understand the context and methodology of how impact is assessed, the different applications between projects, organisations and sector, and new ways of using the assessment of impact. This module will teach you how to communicate social impact to the stakeholders in a simple, precise and compelling manner, and to use social impact assessment as a tool for organisational growth.
17 May 2019, Fri 1.0 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)

Esko Aho
Executive in Residence, Aalto University,
Former Prime Minister of Finland
Identifying Changing Dynamics
The module looks at how changes in the global economic landscape impact regions and organisations. Participants will learn about the link between economy and society, and will be introduced to central concepts of macro-economics. The module combines central literature on the topic with the most up-to-date economic data.
21 & 22 May 2019,Tues & Wed 1.5 day
(Day 1: 9.30am to 5.30pm
Day 2: 9:30am to 1pm)
Dennis R Young
Professor Emeritus,
Georgia State University
Resource Mobilisation
Non-profit organisations rely on several different sources of income including gifts and grants, fees for service, government funding, in-kind donations, volunteer labour, corporate sponsorships, and returns on investments. Identifying the right resource mix for growth and sustainability is a constant topic of discussion among non-profit leaders.

In this module, non-profit leaders will learn how to customise the mix of resources in order to best support the achievement of their individual organisational missions. The module offers a new framework of non-profit resource mobilisation based on the “benefits theory.” This theory views the support of non-profit organisations as an exchange between these organisations and the groups that benefit from their services and who are able to pay for those services in different ways. This leads to different “income portfolios” for non-profit organisations with different social missions.

The module will explain the principles of benefits theory, discuss its application through detailed case studies, and provide working templates that non-profit leaders can use to analyse and improve the resource mixes supporting their own organisations. Selected sources of non-profit income will be discussed in some depth, including the administrative challenges and transactions costs associated with garnering fee income, gifts and grants, and in-kind and volunteer resources. Finally, managing issues of risk and diversification of non-profit income sources will be considered.
23 May 2019, Thurs

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
1.0 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)

Christy Davis
Executive Director
Asia P3 Hub, World Vision International
Cross-sector Collaboration
A non-profit leader interacts and engages with a multitude of constituents who represent a rich source of knowledge, experiences and resources. This module explores the critical elements of this collaboration process in the areas of alignment of mission and strategy, collaboration management, as well as value creation. This will provide participants with the ability to evaluate organisational readiness for good stakeholder relations and ascertain the pre-requisites to increase value-added cross-sector collaboration.
2 & 3 July 2019, Tues & Wed

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
1.5 days
(Day 1: 9.30am to 5.30pm
Day 2: 9:30am to 1:00pm)

Don Ferrin

Professor of
Organisational Behaviour and
Human Resources
Lee Kong Chian School of Business
Value-based Negotiation 
The aim of this module is to enhance the non-profit leader’s ability to reach agreements in a context of trust and transparency that advances the interests of all parties involved and in line with the organisation’s strategic vision and core values. It is tailored for working in cultures which see relationship issues as central to negotiations in addition to rational, cost-benefit approaches.
5 July 2019, Thurs 0.5 day
(2pm to 6pm)
Coaching Kick-off Session & ALP Discussion
Arrange 4 sessions of one-to-one executive coaching with designated coaches after the coaching kick-off session.
19 July 2019, Fri 1.0 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)
Patsian Low

Social Impact Consultant
New Funding Models for Sustainability
Developing sustainable funding sources is one of the key challenge that current and future non-profit leaders need to address. Unfortunately, in these tough economic times, the solutions to address this challenge are not readily available.

In this module non-profit leaders will learn about the rapidly evolving social-impact funding landscape and how to navigate it, in order to help their organisations achieve sustainability in operations and impact.
Navigating this complex ecosystem starts with the understanding of the diverse types of financing providers and instruments, as well as the related developments in public, private and people sector. An everevolving
social landscape compels a deeper understanding of how these new funding models impact the internal and external capacity of the organisation to address social problems it cares about. This module
explores how innovations in interventions and operating models have emerged as a result of the changing socio-economic landscape.

The key focus of this module is to provide participants with the necessary knowledge and skills on how they can prepare their organisations to sustainably engage with various kinds of social impact capital and instruments. Participants will also be equipped with resources to identify suitable models to match different growth needs, and the implications to their operating models and future financial sustainability of their organisations.
29 July 2019, Mon
1.0 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)
Marc Ronez
Chief Risk Strategist, Knowledge Content Leader & Master Coach, Asia Risk Management Institute
Risk & Crisis Management 
In today’s global and volatile environment, effective risk management is of utmost importance to every organisation including non-profits, as they are exposed to a wide range of risk issues. The risks can be due to:
  • Damage to reputation caused by inappropriate behaviours/actions/comments,
  • New difficult regulatory requirements, or
  • Sudden loss of major donors or problems with key suppliers and so on. 
These risks when not managed or when mis-managed will inevitably lead to crises threatening the very sustainability of a non-profit's operations. The purpose of this module is to provide participants with an understanding of the key types of risks that non-profits face and equip them with effective methodologies and tools on how to identify, assess and manage these risks effectively including the all too important crisis management part of the cycle.
This module aims to demonstrate that with an effective enterprise-wide risk management program combining the right dosage of risk management control systems and an ethical risk aware culture, non-profit organisations can protect and more importantly, create sustainable economic and social value. A key element of this module is to help participants reflect on how they are managing risk and crises in their own organisations including discussions on mini cases, bringing in real-life examples to the analytical scrutiny of the participants therefore allowing them to put the provided models and background knowledge into practice.
30 July 2019, Tues

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
1.0 day
(9.30am to 5.30pm)

Usha Menon
Executive Chairman
Usha Menon Management Consultancy
Board Effectiveness
An effective non-profit leader must build a productive relationship with his/her board, as well as to ensure compliance with the Charity Council’s Code of Governance. The issues and challenges faced by both non-profit board and management teams, in ensuring the effectiveness of those who jointly oversee the activities of the non-profit, are at the core of this module.
15 & 16 August 2019, Thurs & Fri

Pre-session e-activities to be completed before start of session
2.0 days
(9.30am to 5.30pm)

Dr Hertta Vuorenmaa

Post-doctoral Academy Researcher
Department of Management at Aalto Biz
Performance, Talent Management and Succession Planning
This two-day module will provide the participants with an overview of Strategic Talent Management and its components, as well as attracting, identifying, deploying, developing and retaining talent. The participants will become familiar with Talent Management systems and the role of Talent Management in the overall organisational structures and processes. Performance management tools and succession planning will be looked at through case examples and role plays.
17 Sep 2019, Tues 1.0 day
(9:30am to 6:00pm)
Discussion Forum with Senior Policy Maker
An exclusive opportunity to discuss your unique challenges and advocate for changes that you would like to see in the social service sector.

Presentation of Action Learning Project
Deliver an elevator pitch of 20 minutes presentation for Action Learning Project to advocate and interact with key stakeholders of the sector to bring about the change intended.
By Mar 2020 Online
Online Leadership Reassessment & 180 degree feedback
The online leadership reassessment & 180 degree feedback will provide participants with deeper insights on their leadership development after they have completed the programme.

* SSI may, at any time and at our sole discretion, change the facilitators and topics, with or without prior notice. Any such change will be effective immediately upon SSI’s management approval to meet the changing training needs of the sector.
PROGRAMME FEES: For Singaporeans/PRs For Foreigners
Fee Excludes GST
(After funding from Tote Board)
(After 90% funding from Tote Board)
(After 80% funding from Tote Board)

  • To be eligible for funding from Tote Board, applicants are expected to complete all the activities stated in the Participant’s Journey, including attendance at no less than 75% for the Learning Lab Sessions.  Tote Board does not provide funding for applicants from organisations with religious purposes or carry out activities to promote any religion.  The relevant information is found via this link  SSI reserves the right to charge the full programme fee if applicants did not meet stipulated conditions.
  • Other funding schemes to defray programme fee after funding from Tote Board:
    • SkillsFuture Study Award for Social Service Sector - find out more here.
To register, please complete the following steps:
  1. Download the programme application form here.
  2. Complete the following checklist and submit to Ms Norlisa Sharif at before application deadline - 10 January 2019.
    • Completed and signed application form
    • Completed Annex A of application form
    • A copy of your NRIC
    • Your CV
    • A recent photo
  1. Only completed applications will be considered.
  2. For complete applications, applicants may be shortlisted for an interview, and will be notified via email
+ Testimonials
  • “I would definitely recommend it to all leaders in social service organisations. It is highly relevant, and there is so much practical knowledge to gain from the interaction”

    Mr Paul Long
    Executive Director
    Family Life Society

  • “Action Learning Project is very close to the heart of all the project members and for me it was the first time I work on a project relating to a direct service. I am learning what my direct service goes through in carrying out the work. It has been very insightful for me.”

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Coaching Kick-off Session & ALP Discussion
Arrange 4 sessions of one-to-one executive coaching with designated coaches after the coaching kick-off session.