Strategic and Operational Planning

What is Strategic Planning?

Strategic planning is a participatory process organizations undertake to define strategy, or direction, and make decisions on the allocation of resources to pursue this strategy. Strategic planning should be a dynamic process involving people/stakeholders internal and external to the organization. The process should scan the environment the organization operates in and assess strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. It should identify any strategic issues that need to be considered.

Strategic planning helps an organization to remain relevant and responsive to the needs of its community, and contributes to organizational health, stability and growth.

Are you ready to plan? We can help.

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Organizations plan for a number of reasons. Many of them sound as if they would best be done reflectively, in quiet times:

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  • a new organization may need to articulate and agree on purpose and means
  • a mature organization might need to
    • find new challenges
    • shake complacency
    • invigorate stakeholders
    • move to the next level
  • a challenged organization might need to solve a problem of direction, consensus, or funding

Notwithstanding these usual intentions, the real reasons to plan are even more pressing during periods of impending crisis. When strained resources are about to require a choice between cutting programs or cutting staff, strategic planning can seem to be pretty far down the list of priorities. However, planning is not a luxury that is best sacrificed when stresses and strains mount. It can be exactly what is needed to illuminate a path through difficult times.

Synthesis Partnership
From the article, Twelve reasons why planning is more critical in challenging times. …and, by the way, what planning really is.

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