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Strategic Planning. Sharon Chontos Sage Project Consultants, LLC. Strategic Planning. In your experience, What went well? What did not go well? What were some pitfalls? What were some benefits?.

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strategic planning

Strategic Planning

Sharon Chontos

Sage Project Consultants, LLC

strategic planning2
Strategic Planning

In your experience,

  • What went well?
  • What did not go well?
  • What were some pitfalls?
  • What were some benefits?

BenefitsSource: Bryson, J. M., Alston, F. K. (2005) Creating and Implementing your Strategic Plan. A workbook for Public and Nonprofit organizations.

  • Increased effectiveness
  • Increased efficiency
  • Improved understanding and better learning
  • Better decision making
  • Enhanced organizational capabilities
  • Improved communications and public relations
  • Increased political support
nonprofit and public strategic planning models
Nonprofit and Public Strategic Planning Models
  • The Drucker Model
    • Drucker, Peter F. (1999) The Drucker Foundation Self Assessment Tool, Process and Participant Workbook. The Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonprofit Management and Jossey-Bass Publishers, San Francisco, CA
  • Amherst Wilder Foundation
    • Amherst Wilder Foundation. (1987) Strategic Planning Workbook for Nonprofit Organizations. Publishing Center for Cultural Resources, New York, NY
  • Strategic Change Cycle Model
    • Bryson, John M. and Alston, Farnum K. (2005) Creating and implementing your Strategic Plan, A Workbook for Public and Nonprofit Organizations
  • Organizations
  • Parts of Organizations
  • Programs
  • Projects
  • Networks
  • Coalitions
  • Communities
when to delay planning source sumption wyland
When to delay planningSource: Sumption & Wyland
  • Impending executive turnover or no current executive
  • Board instability
  • Financial instability
  • Media scrutiny or scandal
  • Significant board and CEO tension
strategic planning process source bryson j m 2005 creating and implementing your strategic plan
Strategic Planning: ProcessSource: Bryson, J. M., 2005, Creating and Implementing your Strategic Plan

Phase Four: Implementing Strategies




Phase Three: Developing Strategies and Action Plans


Action Plans

Phase Two: Identifying and Analyzing Strategic Issues

Goals and Objectives

Strategic Issues




Phase One:

Organizing the Process and Analyzing the Environment

Readiness Assessment

Plan the Plan

Stakeholder Assessment

Mandate Analysis

Environmental Scan

phase 1 readiness assessment source sumption wyland
Phase 1: Readiness AssessmentSource: Sumption & Wyland
  • Does your organization have a current strategic plan?
    • When was it developed?
    • How was it developed?
    • How is it working?
  • Does your organization have an established mission statement that reflects the organization now? And vision and values?
  • Does your organization have stable, diversified funding to deliver its mission?
  • Does your organization have a team that will follow through and make the strategic planning operational through annual work plans and evaluative activities as well as through direct serves?
phase 1 organizing the process source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 1: Organizing the ProcessSource: Bryson and Alston (2005)
  • Whose plan is it?
  • What period of time will the plan cover?
  • Who is the plan’s sponsor(s)?
  • Who is the plan’s champion(s)?
  • Who will be on the planning project team?
  • Who should be involved in the development of the plan?
  • Who should review the plan?
  • Who are audiences for the plan?
  • What resources do we need to complete plan?
  • What criteria should be used to judge the effectiveness of the strategic plan?
should we hire a consultant
Should we hire a consultant?
  • Do you have the internal capacity to facilitate a plan?
  • Would an external perspective be useful in providing unbiased feedback and facilitation?
  • Do your sponsors and champion have the time to facilitate the process and document the plan?
  • Do you have the funding resources to pay for a consultant?
  • Can a consultant do some tasks and internal resources do others?
  • Would it be helpful to have an external consultant address uncomfortable subjects?
phase 1 mandate analysis
Phase 1: Mandate Analysis
  • Do you have a national or parent organization that requires a strategic plan?
  • Do they mandate your organization have a strategic plan? If yes,
    • Do they have a suggested or required process to follow?
    • Do they have required deliverables?
    • Do they have resources (experts, funding, templates) that you can draw upon?
phase 1 stakeholder assessment
Phase 1: Stakeholder Assessment
  • Identify key stakeholders
    • Internal
    • External
  • Gain their feedback regarding the present state and future priorities through:
    • Surveys
    • Focus Groups
    • Interviews
phase 1 swot analysis source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 1: SWOT AnalysisSource: Bryson and Alston (2005)
  • Strengths: What are the strengths of your organization and how will you maintain or improve those attributes?
  • Weaknesses: What are the organization’s weaknesses and how will you overcome those weaknesses?
  • Opportunities: What external opportunities may be available to your organization?
  • Threats: What are threats or challenges that your organization will face? How will you overcome each challenge?
phase 1 environmental analysis
Phase 1: Environmental Analysis
  • Competition
    • Are there other nonprofit, public or for-profit agencies that provide the same service or product you do?
    • How do they compare in price, quality and value?
    • Who has contact with your audience?
      • Clients
      • Funders
  • Sustainable Funding
    • What are your funding sources now?
    • Are they sustainable?
    • How many sources of funding do you have?
    • What are your funding challenges?

Forces of ChangeSource: Mobilizing for Action through Planning & Partnerships (MAPP), National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO)

  • Forces are a broad all-encompassing category that includes trends, events, and factors.
  • Trends are patterns over time, such as migration in and out of a community or a growing disillusionment with government.
  • Factors are discrete elements, such as a community’s large ethnic population, an urban setting, or a jurisdiction’s proximity to a major waterway.
  • Events are one-time occurrences, such as a hospital closure, a natural disaster, or the passage of new legislation.

What Kind of Areas or Categories Are Included?

  • Social, economic, political, technical, environmental, scientific, legal, ethical
institution data
Institution Data
  • List your core competencies. Be honest.
  • Analyze your own data:
    • Financial
    • Client Statistics
    • Surveys
      • Quantitative
      • Qualitative
    • Public Reviews
phase 2 mission
Phase 2: Mission

What is our organization here to do?

  • What is our purpose?
  • What business are we in?
  • Who do we serve?
  • How are we unique?
mission tips on drafting
Mission: Tips on drafting
  • Provide key stakeholders a question(s) regarding organization’s purpose. Have individuals write their own thoughts.
  • In a small group, have individuals share their ideas and ask group to draft a mission statement. Present to larger group for editing.
  • Mission statement should be:
    • Concise
    • Geography
    • Services
phase 2 values source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 2: ValuesSource: Bryson and Alston (2005)

How do we want to treat others?

  • Review your organization’s values in practice at this time.
  • Are these values desirable or not?
  • Are there additional values your organization should adopt?
  • Choose 8 – 10 values you want to keep or adopt and define each in your own words.
  • Incorporate into the vision statement.
phase 2 vision source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 2: VisionSource: Bryson and Alston (2005)

A vision statement reflects what the organization will look like if it successfully implements its strategies.

  • Describe your organization now.
  • Imagine reporting on your organization 5 years from now.
  • Conduct a gap analysis. How will you close the gap between now and five year vision?
framing scenarios
Framing scenarios




phase 2 strategic issues source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 2: Strategic IssuesSource: Bryson and Alston (2005)
  • During Phase 1, note strategic issues that arise from during the data collection and analysis.
  • Frame the issues as questions or concerns the organization can do something about.
  • Determine if the issue is strategic, operational or tactical. Table or assign the operational and tactical issues for now.
phase 2 goals source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 2: GoalsSource: Bryson and Alston (2005)

Goal: “A long-term organizational target or direction of development. It states what the organization wants to accomplish or become over the next several years. Goals provide a basis for decisions about the nature, scope, and relative priorities of all projects and activities. Everything the organization does should help it move toward attainment of one or more goals.”

Goal 1: Increase the number of clients served while maintaining high customer satisfaction.

phase 2 strategy source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 2: StrategySource: Bryson and Alston (2005)

Strategy: “The means by which an organization intends to accomplish a goal or objective. It summarizes a pattern across policy, programs, projects, decisions, and resource allocations.”

Strategy identifying tips:

  • Review each strategic issue. How can you improve or address the issue? What are practical alternatives?
  • What major initiatives can be pursued to address the issue?
phase 2 objectives source bryson and alston 2005
Phase 2: ObjectivesSource: Bryson and Alston (2005)

Objective: “A measurable target that must be met on the way to attaining a goal.”

Objective Defining Tips:

Each objective should have a definable measurement with a baseline and end target.

  • Objective 1.1 Increase the number of clients receiving our counseling services from the historical average of 120 per year (baseline average 2004 to 2008) to 150 per year (target average from 2009 to 2014 during 5 year plan period).
  • Objective 1.2 Maintain customer satisfaction based on a 5 point Likert scale at 4.5 (baseline average 2004 to 2008) over the 5 year plan period.
phase 3 budget
Phase 3: Budget
  • Initially, your organization may want to list budget considerations only.
  • The following are project budget categories for most grant applications:
    • Personnel
    • Fringe Benefits
    • Equipment
    • Supplies
    • Construction
    • Contractors
    • Indirect Expenses
phase 3 timeline
Phase 3: Timeline
  • Table
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Project
phase 4 implementation
Phase 4: Implementation
  • If you have employees, their objectives should directly reflect the plans objectives and action plan.
  • Each goal and objective should be monitored and “owned” by someone in the organization. They should be accountable for implementation, interventions and measurement.
  • Measures for each objective shall be updated periodically and reviewed. Interventions to correct or enhance should be encouraged.
phase 4 monitoring
Phase 4: Monitoring
  • Track your measures.
  • Maintain active action plans and timelines.
  • Make timely and effective interventions.
  • Rise above the daily activities periodically to check if you are still on track with the strategies and goals.
logic model suggested resources
Logic Model: Suggested Resources
  • W.K. Kellogg
  • USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture
  • University of Florida/Extension
  • University of Idaho/Extension
  • University of Wisconsin/Extension
logic model example template source wk kellogg 2004
Logic Model: Example TemplateSource: WK Kellogg (2004)

Resources/ Inputs





Your planned work

Your intended results

thank you
Thank you!

Sharon Chontos

Sage Project Consultants, LLC