“We need a strategic plan.”
Really? Are you sure? Have you first crafted an agreed-upon strategic DIRECTION?
What’s the difference, you ask?
Many (dare I say MOST) boards jump right into strategic planning, without first getting to the essence of where they are aspiring to go, and why. As a result, people sit around and come up with tactics rather than strategies, or they offer up strategies that sound good and seem like “no-brainers,” but they just don’t lead the organization to the next level. It’s all just a part of a formulaic exercise. This leads to a document with little to no real meaning for the organization.
This is why I coach nonprofit boards and executives through strategic direction setting as a prerequisite for strategic planning.
Building a meaningful strategic plan takes more than a half-day board retreat. Setting strategic DIRECTION can be done in a day, but only with skillful facilitation and a high-functioning, highly-focused board.
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