This ICF International white paper presents criteria that can be used to identify when capacity building would be the most effective intervention and to determine how the capacity-building process should be conducted. Each set of criteria is incorporated into a grid analysis and decision tree that will assist change agents and technical assistance providers to effectively use the capacity-building process.
Like other powerful intervention and support processes—such as coaching—capacity building cultivates the context and tools needed to successfully implement complex change initiatives. The capacity-building process is customized according to specific individual and group needs and yields an array of highly effective behaviors that increase task performance. Capacity building is also an intensive, purposeful, and long-term process that focuses on targeted skill and capacity gaps, and it may not be needed for every identified issue.