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Building a Strategic Plan

What is your organization’s theory of change? If you can answer that question, you are on your way to establishing or updating your organizational strategy. At all but the largest, most well funded nonprofit organizations, allocating resources among seemingly critical needs is a constant struggle. But if you take time out to focus on the problem your organization is trying to solve or the goal it is trying to achieve – and how you can best contribute to that end result – then you have a framework for setting priorities.

During the process of setting and creating a plan around an organization’s strategy, many different, and sometimes difficult, decisions must be made. For example, if an ongoing program is no longer mission-critical, it might need to be put on hold. If a new initiative is essential but under-funded, you might need to join with a partner. If you have been unable to measure impact, you might need to invest in better systems for collecting and analyzing data.

At Mission Communications, we don’t believe there is a one-size-fits-all process for strategic planning. Some organizations benefit from a one-day workshop with leadership staff and board to confirm priorities, build consensus, and identify challenges. Other organizations need a full-scale planning process that takes place over the course of several months and involves stakeholder interviews, peer analysis, fundraising assessment and a detailed look at administrative issues such as staff capacity, financial management, technology platforms, and both internal and external communications.

Regardless of which depth of service you require, we ensure that you walk away from the engagement with a clear understanding of how you can more effectively leverage your resources to advance your goals.

“Working with Mission to update our strategic plan made us question many of our assumptions and led us to pilot a new approach to outreach. Rather than redefining our mission, the process prompted us to focus on how we can be most effective at changing the lives of our constituents.”
-Jennifer Raikes
Executive Director
The TLC Foundation for Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors