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Jan 30, 2024

In episode 90 of Mission: Impact, Carol Hamilton goes solo and talks about:

  • What strategic planning is and is not

  • the five steps to a comprehensive strategic planning process

  • Keys to ensuring your plan gets put into action and stays relevant

The five steps are 1. kick off, 2. discovery or listening tour, 3. explore, 4. decide, 5. plan & act

Strategic planning:

  • Strategic planning is a structured process for setting priorities for the medium term (3-5 years).

  • It involves gathering insights from stakeholders, identifying themes, exploring futures, and making decisions to focus the organization’s future in service of its mission.

What it is NOT

  • It’s not about predicting or controlling the future.

  • Just the document, it's about conversations that build alignment and shared understanding.

  • It is not just a retreat

Kick Off

  • Setting yourself up for success

  • Let everyone know what is happening and what is coming

  • Pull together a team 

  • Equity considerations


  • Go on a listening tour

  • Interviews, focus groups, surveys – what will work for you.

  • How are you making participation accessible?


  • Share the current state as well as hopes and aspirations

  • Explore the wider landscape and ecosystem for trends

  • imagine new futures for the organization


  • Prioritize and decide on the future directions and goals: Where will you put your energy?

  • Revisit your mission and vision – are they aligned with where you are going?

Plan & Act

  • Define action steps, success indicators, and feedback mechanisms.


Keeping the Plan Fresh 

  • Agree on a process for reviewing and updating the plan

Important Links and Resources:

Common Mistakes Organizations Make in Strategic planning:

Be in touch

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