Businesses, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and community groups ask RKI to help when they want to bring about some type of improvement.
We provide these services to meet our clients' needs:
Follow the links below for more detailed information along with complete client lists.
At RKI, we provide a range of facilitation services, from moderating meetings to designing processes and techniques for effective group work. We work with clients of all sizes and with all kinds of missions. We often provide facilitation services for groups that have been charged with addressing a specific issue or concern, for example "How can citizens make a difference as clean-up begins at a heavily polluted Superfund clean-up site?" Our work with the Site-Specific Advisory Board Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant is an example of RKI facilitation.
RKI conducts sophisticated focus group research for clients who want to understand the ideas and views of a particular group of people customers, employees, constituents, or citizens, for example in more depth. We use focus groups to answer such questions as "How do clients of early childhood programs view the adequacy and quality of services available in their communities?" That question guided a study for the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence and the Kentucky Department of Education that serves as an example of RKI focus group research with citizens.
People engage RKI to conduct hands-on, qualitative research that seeks to understand the reasons behind people's views and to put reliable information to practical use. Working collaboratively with community partners, we have conducted research on civic change efforts to address such questions as "What practices should community groups use to build and sustain good community dialogue projects on important issues, particularly race and racism?" The Best Practices study we conducted for the Study Circles Resource Center is an example of one major RKI study (or documentation) of civic change.
Training and coaching
RKI began work with the Partnership for Kentucky Schools in 1995 to create a training for school leaders and staff whose responsibilities include coaching school personnel to be more effective in their work. The Authentic Partnership™ model that emerged builds on the action research and practical work of Chris Argyris, Roger Schwarz and others, and provides a model and related tools for developing the internal commitment necessary for meaningful and sustained changed. The training is one part of the answer to the question: "How can we accelerate positive change?"
On an individual basis, the Authentic Partnership™ approach expands communication choices through increased understanding of present habits and effective alternatives. In addition, the Authentic Partnership™ key values and guidelines provide more effective options for the design of individual meetings, internal communications, outreach efforts, and planning processes. The values and guidelines also provide a framework for analyzing current and proposed organizational policies and procedures. Authentic Partnership™ increases the effectiveness of the work of leaders, managers, coaches, facilitators, and colleagues. Steve Kay has written a short paper describing Authentic Partnership™ and his approach to Authentic Partnership training, and a longer paper (390KB Adobe PDF) that provides more detail.
Guidance for change efforts
People invite RKI to help when they are involved in a business, nonprofit organization, or public-private community group that must change in order to thrive. Often the central question is "How do we figure out what to do that will be effective, and how do we get all the necessary people to do their part?" Kentucky Arts Council is one example of a participative organizational change effort in a statewide arts agency.
RKI also works with nonprofit and civic organizations that are dedicated to long-term community change. For example, we have worked with the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence for many years on the question "How can people in a state with historically poor schools create a climate of support for school improvement?"
At RKI we have a number of favorite tools we use to guide change efforts.