Strategic planning involves collective thinking and planned action, carried out by stakeholders of an organization (typically including board, select staff, and other key stakeholders), to accomplish the goals of the organization. Strategic planning results in “fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what the organization (or other entity) is, what it does, and why it does it” (Bryson, 1995: 4-5). Most importantly, strategic planning is a learning process for the board, staff, and key stakeholders of an organization.
The outcome of strategic planning is both a written strategic plan as well as a collective agreement on the mission, vision, objectives and strategies for the organization.
Organizations, businesses, institutions – all can benefit from having a strategic plan. There’s a variety of ways to do strategic planning, Check out these resources for guidance, or contact the Dane County Community Resource Development Educator for planning assistance.
Community Tool Box, Strategic Planning This resource, from the workgroup for community health and development at the University of Kansas, provides a comprehensive overview of the strategic planning process. The tool box contains a wide array of resource materials that are related to strategic planning, from community assessment to evaluation. This is a good starting point for organizations that are considering embarking on a strategic planning process.
Strategic Planning for Non-profit and Foundation Leaders by Richard Mittenthal. This article provides useful tips to assure that the strategic planning process is useful, and that the resulting plan prompts action.