Building on the wide-ranging experience of its partners and senior advisors, ALA assists clients with:

These services are offered individually or in combination to encompass a full range of institutional research, analysis and planning in support of academic and financial priorities.

Strategic Planning

ALA works with each client to tailor planning methodologies that suit the needs and culture of that institution.  Services include:

  • Analysis of institutional strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats;
  • Facilitation of planning discussions;
  • Advisement on the identification and articulation of strategic priorities;
  • Assistance with the conceptualization, structuring and drafting of planning documents;
  • Coordination of institutional communications with constituent groups throughout the planning process;
  • Creation of implementation and assessment strategies to ensure that planning priorities are fully realized.

Strategic planning assistance includes access to deep archives of literature on trends in higher education and strategic initiatives undertaken by peer institutions. ^TOP

AACSB Accreditation and Planning Consultation

ALA partners with Richard Flaherty & Associates to provide business schools with a full range of accreditation and strategic planning services tailored to their needs. Together we provide a deep knowledge of AACSB accreditation practices that can streamline the process for business schools preparing for and undergoing initial accreditation or maintenance of accreditation, as well as assistance implementing strategic plans thereafter. Our collaboration encompasses:

  • Pre-accreditation and maintenance of accreditation consulting;
  • Strategic planning facilitation (including mission development, creation of prioritized strategies and actions, and identification of measures with which to assess the success of the plan); and
  • Assistance with implementation, measurement, and review of strategic priorities.
    The Principals of ALA and Richard Flaherty have consulted with almost 100 AACSB accredited business and accounting programs. Our long and varied leadership experience in business schools and universities provide valuable support for leading institutions around the world.

International Partnerships and Opportunities

ALA is especially committed to helping academic organizations make their work more international in an era of increasing globalization.  Services include:

  • Forging partnerships and collaborations with peer institutions;
  • Creation and implementation of off-shore programs;
  • Incorporation of international students and perspectives into on-campus academic programs.
The partners and senior advisors of Academic Leadership Associates bring a vast network of contacts with higher education institutions throughout North America, Europe, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America, and Africa.  These links, and deep experience in internationalizing curricula, assist clients seeking a richer array of connections between their institution and peers abroad. For example, one key area of ALA's work focuses on assisting institutions with identifying partners in other countries, making the necessary introductions, and facilitating partnership agreements between the parties.  ^TOP

Institutional Research

ALA offers a range of research services to assess clientís current areas of strength and opportunities for use in strategic planning and implementation, or other targeted assessments.  Research services include:

  • Design and implementation of research on all aspects of an institution, including curricula, educational effectiveness, academic staffing, research productivity, and resource allocation;
  • Analysis of the findings;
  • Recommendations to leadership for utilizing research findings in strategic decision-making.

Research may be undertaken in support of strategic planning, or in conjunction with other institutional priorities. ^TOP

Budgeting and Financial Analysis

Designed to maximize revenue and fully realize spending efficiencies, analysis will enhance traditional financial planning and budgeting practices. ALA services focus on budgeting considerations unique to higher education including designing budgeting processes and documents that are tailored to provide academic leaders with information to make informed financial decisions.  Specific services include:

  • Analyzing existing budgeting systems;
  • Designing and implementing new budgeting models;
  • Overhead cost allocation schemes. 

The partners and senior advisors of ALA bring extensive expertise in institutional finance and budgeting on all levels, from higher education systems, to institutional leadership, to accounting and finance practices on the school and departmental levels. ^TOP

Strategic Leadership Planning

ALA provides assessments of the efficacy of its clientsí managerial systems and practices to ensure that organizational structures and personnel meet institutionsí ambitions.  In the way that master planning for campuses helps colleges and universities assess their current space needs and approach growth strategically, strategic leadership planning services help institutions map their organizational structure to strategic goals.  Whether in concert with strategic planning or to facilitate the implementation of existing plans, this process focuses on ensuring that an institutionís leadership structure best meets its current and future needs. ^TOP

Crisis Management Planning

A broad range of potential crises threaten the physical security and reputations of colleges and universities.  Although no specific crisis can be anticipated, effective preparation can quicken the pace of response and recovery and mitigate potential threats to an institutionís operations and reputation.  ALA offers tailored:

  • Assessments of current preparedness;
  • Facilitation leading to the creation of crisis management protocols. 

Although widely pursued in Fortune 500 companies, these strategies are only just beginning to take hold in higher education.  The partners and associates of ALA have extensive experience in the area that may be tapped by clients. ^TOP


ALA ís extensive experience in fundraising ranges from institutional advancement strategies and high-level donor cultivation to assistance with creating and staffing new development efforts.  Services include:

  • Fundraising strategy
  • Counsel for senior leadership on donor cultivation and solicitation
  • Assistance with assessing and improving fundraising practices
  • Creation of new fundraising programs, including organizational structure, staffing, and training

The firmís senior advisors, in particular, have proven records of success in fundraising at research universities, liberal arts colleges, and international NGOs.  ALA also has a network of fundraising professionals at all levels of management with expertise in each facet of donor identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship. ^TOP

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