Creating positive social change is hard work that requires focus, discipline, and collaboration. We believe explicit values can guide our decision-making, organize our priorities, and facilitate effective partnerships.

Our values serve as both a description of what we already share and an aspiration for what NFF will become. They remind us what really matters in our interactions with each other, our clients, and the communities we serve. And we measure our success by how well we live up to them.

We will work smarter, faster and with greater humility in everything we do by appealing to these five values: Generosity of Spirit, Rigor Without Attitude, Responsiveness, Leading by Doing, and Equity in Action. Ask us about them, and we’ll tell you what it means for NFF to be a values-driven organization.

Generosity of Spirit

  • We believe our work thrives in an atmosphere of trust and empathy.
  • We work by seeking and bringing out the best in others.
  • We succeed when we embrace a diversity of voices.

Rigor without Attitude

  • We believe our power comes from coupling thoughtful insight with accessible communication.
  • We work by humbly challenging the status quo, changing practices one colleague, one client, one conversation at a time.
  • We succeed when we make a positive difference not just by what we say but how we say it
  • We actively learn from our clients, partners, and others to deepen our understanding of the sector we serve


  • We believe productive collaboration is founded on timely, honest and respectful communication.
  • We work by communicating proactively and by responding quickly and directly.
  • We succeed when we raise, respond and resolve concerns and opportunities efficiently.

Leading by Doing

  • We believe that on-the-ground work is the foundation for what we do.
  • We work by deriving insight from our mistakes and successes and converting them into shareable knowledge and practices.
  • We succeed when we develop powerful ideas that are taken up by others.

Equity in Action

  • We believe that operating equitably and inclusively is crucial and fundamental to generating effective solutions.
  • We work by challenging structural inequities and imbalances of power as we honor all individuals’ contributions.
  • We succeed when we purposefully contribute to advancing equity in our communities.

NFF believes that the arc of the moral universe does indeed bend toward justice. We also know that it still needs a lot of help from all of us, working together. Read more about NFF’s commitment to social justice.