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The 2009 Association and Nonprofit Strategic Planning and Research Guide* A Workbook of Models, Templates and Best Practices for Creating Simple, Effective.

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Presentation on theme: "The 2009 Association and Nonprofit Strategic Planning and Research Guide* A Workbook of Models, Templates and Best Practices for Creating Simple, Effective."— Presentation transcript:

1 The 2009 Association and Nonprofit Strategic Planning and Research Guide* A Workbook of Models, Templates and Best Practices for Creating Simple, Effective Research-Based Strategic Plans Tied to Operations for Volunteers and Staff Created By: Stephen C. Carey, Ph.D., CAE President & Lead Strategist Association Management & Marketing Resources *Available 3/05

2 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 2 Strategic Planning and Research Guide Contents GUIDE SECTION PAGE  Table of Contents……………………………………….……………………………………………………………….. 2  Forward By David Pearce Snyder…………………………………………………………………………………….. 5  Dedication…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….…… 6  About the Author………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 5  Preface…………………………………………………………………………………………………….………….…  Acknowledgments………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 7  How To Use the Planning Guide……………………………………………………………………………………… 11  Introduction………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 10  1. The New Association Strategic and Tactical Planning World……………………………… …………...… Key Governance and Strategic Planning Issues, Trends and Benchmarks Mid-Decade………..….….13

3 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 3 Planning and Research Guide Contents, Cont’d GUIDE SECTION PAGE 3. Definition of Integrated Strategic Planning –How to Develop and Connect All Planning Levels…………….…19 4. Step I: Research—The Cornerstone of Strategic Planning Development………………..………………………….xx 5. Step II: Bringing the Past, Present and Future into the Strategic Planning Process …………………….……….xx 6. Step III: Developing or Reassessing the Core Business and Professional Values of the Association…….....xx 7. Step IV: Creating or Re-affirming the Vision, Mission and Goals of the Organization……………………………xx 8. Step V: Realigning the Current Structure, Benefits, Programs and Services Based on Planning Outcomes..xx 9. Step VI: Development of Objectives and Supporting Tactical Initiatives……………………………… ………..….xx 10. Step VII: Integrating Objectives and Tactical Initiatives with the Annual Budget and Program of Work…....xx 11. Step VIII: Developing Strategic Planning Performance and Criteria and Evaluating Plan Execution…………xx 12. Creating and Delivering Quantified Value for the Dues Dollar in the Strategic Planning Process…………….………xx 13. Conclusion………………………………………………………………………………………..………………….…………xx

4 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 4 TABS: Planning Guide Readings, Guides, Models, Templates and Examples TABCONTENTS TAB 1 — Key Governance, and Strategic Planning Trends To Address TAB 2 — Integrating Strategic, Operational and Business Planning Templates TAB 3 —Planning Research Templates and Templates for Integrating Present and Future Planning Scenarios TAB 4 — Samples for Planning Components of Vision, Mission, Goals, Objectives and Tactical Initiatives TAB 5 — Templates for Creating Strategic Planning Metric Performance Criteria and Ongoing Evaluation TAB 6 — Sample Templates for Creating a Value Matrix and Product Priority Data TAB 7— Annotated Bibliography and Ordering Information for Templates and Other AMMR Publications

5 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 5 FORWARD from David Pearce Snyder, Consulting Futurist The future is our common destination. It’s where we’re all going to spend the rest of our lives. But, as a “place” in time, the future differs from a physical destination in two crucial respects. First, we don’t have any choice about traveling to the future. We’re all going there whether we like it or not. What’s more, once we get to the future, if we don’t like it – or are ill-prepared to deal with its realities – we can’t come back to the present. The future is “for keeps”. This is why long-range planning merits the investment of our time and attention, and ultimately, our cash flow. At this moment of accelerating innovation and change, purposeful planning and leadership must be based on the reliably-forecastable demographic, economic and technologic trends and developments that will predictably reshape the marketplace realities for all organizations, their customers and their suppliers. Strategic leadership must provide foresight for all stakeholders.

6 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 6 FORWARD Cont’d

7 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 7 Dedication This publication is dedicated to the association volunteers and staff that labor in the vineyards of our profession every day. They collectively spend countless hours making the association a better place for all members and stakeholders. Oftentimes, their glory and satisfaction is a simple toast to each other at the end of the year at the annual meeting, but their daily accomplishments are the monuments to their success. To them, each association stakeholder that finds value in the collective offerings of the association are most deeply indebted, as are those of us who have the privilege of working with them.

8 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 8 ABOUT THE AUTHOR… Stephen C. Carey, Ph.D., CAE, President and Lead Strategist of Association Management and Marketing Resources, is a former international and regional association CEO for 13 years and has written, published, or edited 100+ articles and several books on association strategic planning, marketing, communication, governance and management topics, including several landmark articles on the nature of strategic planning and tying and benchmarking strategic plans to operations. Dr. Carey, author of the Marketing and Communications Planning Guide, was selected as one of the 12 most influential association executives by the Washington Business Journal, and is among the associations industry’s few leading experts on strategic planning, restructuring associations, program assessment and marketing and communications management.. Dr. Carey is a 1986 charter class Fellow of the American Society of Association Executives and recipient of the Greater Washington Society of Association Executive’s Chairman’s Award. He also was selected for the 2002 Circle of Excellence Award from the Maryland Society of Association Executives for his association governance and marketing courses in the Greater Washington Area and elsewhere on strategic and marking planning, through which over association executives and chief staff executives have been trained. Dr. Carey is an approved facilitator for the ASAE Foundation’s Exploring the Future series. He and his family live in the Greater Washington area. Information about AMMR can be found at and he may be reached at:

9 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - 9 Preface This is the second textbook we have written in addition to three previous textbooks we have published and edited in association management in the functional areas of association administration, domestic and international meetings and marketing and communications. By far, this is the most important, in terms of providing the association executive and volunteer with a critical and methodological approach toward creating a future blueprint for planning strategically, integrating the plan into the ongoing program of work and the budget, while attempting to adjust for the impact and integration of differing future consequences. Our previous texts, The Association and Nonprofit Marketing and Communications Planning Guide (revised 2005) and Marketing the Nonprofit Association (Reprinted 2009), provided an organized and integrated approach to creating consolidated marketing and communications plans and provided a link to integrating them into the strategic plan of the association. This text closes the gap and provides an integrated approach to linking these marketing and communications plans in any functional area to the strategic plan and program of work, and provides working templates for the association to accomplish this task. These two guides act in tandem to provide the association with a complete planning sequence from creating the strategic plan through assembling the product line marketing plans for each functional area of the association. * *These two Guides are available as a package—see the order form.

10 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Preface Cont’d With no comprehensive integrated strategic planning tools or guides in use that show simply and graphically how to strategically plan and implement the plan, we thought it important to bring a simplified methodology that all nonprofits, large and small, could use to develop easy- to-use plans that integrate strategy with the tactics of the organization. The Association and Nonprofit Strategic Planning Guide, creates a simplified but effective strategic planning tool that links together the association’s distant future with today’s operational programs and service plans, and ties them together with the strategic plan, budget and yearly program of work. In short, it makes you think about all the strategic and operational planning ingredients you need to consider, and lets you tailor your plan to your organization. The guide comes with models and templates used for creating an integrated strategic plan to act as the “headlights” for associations going forward, while at the same time providing the day-to-day operational blueprint. Also included are planning and budgeting coordinative models and templates to be used to integrate strategic and operational planning at all levels of the organization, down to the development of individual products and services. Strategic Planning Guide templates, as well as the guide itself, are available on CD-ROM and electronically via an attachment in Word on the order form.

11 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Acknowledgements The author gratefully appreciates and acknowledges the research, writings and contributions of the many association executives, societies of association executives, and hundreds of AMMR students and their associations. These individuals, associations and companies have provided and contributed data, insights, tools and techniques toward understanding and illuminating the realities of the association and nonprofit strategic planning marketplace used in this Guide. Most of all, I am most deeply indebted and issue a big thank you as well, to my colleagues in the association management consultant ranks, without whom this Guide could not have been written. I continue to learn much from them, through their writings, teaching and facilitations on the association planning journey, and value the contributions from this most helpful professional cadre towards deepening the understanding of what it means to plan strategically, while operating in the here and now. © Association Management & Marketing Resources All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, disk, hard drive, photocopying, audiovisual or other without in writing permits from the publisher. Excerpts for classroom permissions freely granted with permission. Call AMMR for permissions and rights at , or at

12 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X How to Use the Planning Guide The Planning Guide is in the form of a workbook and is not a strategic planning textbook. There are 13 sections and 7 TABs to the Guide. The sections provide a thorough explanation of the subject matter and the TAB materials reinforce the subject matter with templates, best practices, models and articles of importance. Readers should first go through the section readings and then review TAB materials. Read the articles associated with each of the sections to get a flavor of the planning elements discussed. Some sections have self-examinations to assist the reader in evaluating their own association in relation to the text. Take the exams and apply learning to changing your strategic planning and research environment— Remember, the board, other key leaders and stakeholders, CEO and senior staff must buy-in to the concepts presented in the guide, in order for necessary “change buy-in” to occur. Use the templates at the TABs to create your own customized planning tools, following the instructions in the text. We strongly recommend that you follow the sequence outlined in the Guide. Oftentimes, associations have their own terminology components described in this Guide. For example, some staff or volunteers use the terms “vision and mission” or “goals and objectives” in different contexts and may define them differently. Regardless of how you label these terms, we strongly recommend that you sequence the activities described in the order we place them methodologically, regardless of the term or label you wish to use to describe them. Although we have placed appropriate reading materials at the TABs, we strongly recommend the annotated strategic planning readings list at TAB 7 for all volunteers and staff involved in creating the strategic plan. We hope that you are pleasantly surprised with the content of the workbook, and use it for all the purposes for which it is intended. Call us anytime, at no charge, to review or determine how best to apply any of the materials presented to your organization.

13 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Introduction REAL-TIME PLANNING IN A CHANGING AND UNCERTAIN NONPROFIT WORLD Our ability as organizations to forecast and react quickly to changing internal and external forces and conditions will be the future bottom-line criteria for our survival as organizations representing members, industries and institutions. The following quote sums up the attitude we must have to plan simply, aggressively and effectively and sounds the call for getting serious about planning as a daily ongoing activity interwoven into the fabric of the way in which we do business as nonprofit enterprises. “Perhaps the bottom line is not so much what we do with our organizations, but how we deal with a changing world ourselves as leaders and managers. Ultimately, we have a choice. We can decide that the world is too difficult, too threatening, and retreat from it, take no chances. Then we will have less of a life: the world out there, for us hiding in our bunkers, will only become more threatening. Or we can choose to go out and face the world, maybe being more careful, but nevertheless willing to take risks. This is the way to a fuller organizational life. And whichever choice we make, that is what we will mirror and teach our current and future staff and volunteers.” * PRO-ACTIVITY IS THE KEY This guide attempts to address, in a clear and simple manner, the importance of pro-activity and “real time” integration and renewal of strategic and tactical planning on an ongoing basis. By doing so we might assist association and nonprofit executives in accomplishing their strategic planning missions of creating a plan for the future, operating in the present and integrating long range planning elements and differing futures into the yearly budget and program of work. *Adapted from the publication Dads and Daughters by Jim Kelly (Random House, New York, NY, 2002) regarding how to deal proactively with change in today’s uncertain environment.

14 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Section 1: The New Association Strategic and Tactical Planning World NEED FOR SIMPLE, COMPREHENSIVE TOOL, TEMPLATES, MODELS AND BEST PRACTICES As in the case of our first guide, the Association Marketing and Communications Guide, the Association and Nonprofit Strategic Planning Guide was created as a direct result of the need for a simple, comprehensive, adjustable, easy-to-understand-and-use strategic planning tool for nonprofits in times as uncertain as these. This Guide provides the latest trends and issues in strategic planning, the latest in methodological thinking about how to plan, and best practices and benchmarks to compare your association’s planning efforts, as well as templates to use in each area of strategic planning so you can create your own plan using the Guide. WE ARE UNDER-PREPARED FOR RAPID CHANGE Changes are occurring much more rapidly for associations and other nonprofits, and many are not equipped to handle strategic planning “on the run,” which is the first and foremost requirement of strategic planning today. In reviewing data from a variety of trade associations, professional societies and other nonprofits of all sizes and budgets, we have found that less than 50% have a strategic plan. More striking: less than 10% have a strategic plan which is tied to the ongoing budget and program of work.

15 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Use the Plan you Created and Paid for in Resources and Volunteer Time The Need to Develop a Written Plan, Know where it is and How to Use It What if the plane goes down with the Board and CSE? Who knows what the plan is, where it is located and how it is linked or integrated with the ongoing program of work? Many association senior executives and volunteers keep the association’s strategic plan locked “in their heads” or, as consultants are like to say, “in a drawer or on a shelf somewhere.” Oftentimes the leadership on staff and on the board certainly know where the organization is going, but fail to write it down, articulate it or connect it with the ongoing work plan of the organization. By so doing, they do a disservice to the stakeholder community by not ensuring that the organization has a comprehensive plan that has been openly prepared, and to which all stakeholder segments have had an opportunity to contribute.

16 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Avoid Personal Agendas of Volunteer Leaders and Staff Volunteer leaders or staff who have their “own” personal goals for the association Worse, sometimes the board, staff and leadership spend the organization’s human and monetary resources on preparing a plan, only to have the installed leadership usurp the plan’s direction with personal goals and agendas. The disciplined association will ensure, as indicated in this guide, that a common methodology is followed in creating the strategic plan and that all elements of the leadership have “bought –in” to the plan, preventing individual leaders from deviating from the plan with personal agendas. The best way to do this is to have the incoming, outgoing and chair–elect of the association on board the planning committee along with a variety of constituent segment representatives. All should agree not to deviate from the plan’s direction, unless there is joint agreement between members of the executive committee and they have formally consulted with the strategic planning committee. Emergencies Of course, in emergency situations, the officers and the CSE should be empowered to take whatever action is necessary, with the caveat that they inform the rest of the board and strategic planning committee ex post facto. This ensures that the loop is closed, and any new goals or objectives, for which funds or manpower has been allocated is dully accounted for.

17 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Use a Professional Association or Nonprofit Strategic Planning Consultant as Your Facilitator. Rule Number One: Don’t try to go it alone or use staff or members as facilitators Strategic planning requires the assistance of a competent, trained facilitator to assist the association on its strategic planning journey. Using one of your own staff or a volunteer stakeholder is to be avoided at all costs simply because of the perception of who it is and the prejudices that they might be perceived as bringing to the process. Further, staff and volunteers usually are not nonprofit or association trained facilitators, do not have experience with melding the volunteer and staff components into a a strategic planning team, and are not competent to conduct the pre-plan research or integrate it into the process. Bringing in an independent, trained association strategic planning facilitator – one familiar with conducting such research and integrating it with the strategic planning process – shows the association’s commitment to the process and the result. The criteria to use in selecting an experienced facilitator include: Former Chief Staff Executive of either a trade association or a professional society Formal training in facilitative skills Formal training in qualitative and quantitative market research techniques and designs Experience in the governance, administration, finance, marketing and communications areas of the association Previous experience in facilitating strategic planning assignments for trade associations and professional societies Experience in writing marketing or communications plans for different functional areas If possible, experience as a volunteer officer in a trade association or professional society, and most important, Good comments by former facilitation assignment associations; NOT just recommendations from colleagues, who have not gone through the experience with the facilitator.

18 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X The Wrong Fit: Mistakes Do Happen What if we made a mistake the first time? On the facilitator side of the scorecard, facilitation of strategic plans for nonprofits, professional and trade associations is an art and not a science, and has a lot to do with “fit.” Regardless of your due diligence, sometimes the match is not right. Don't let one bad experience make you afraid to try again. However, the chances of your selecting the right facilitator go up dramatically the more criteria you have used in your selection on the preceding page. You will certainly have retained a facilitator that has years of experience as an association exec and also as a management consultant – the keys to understanding and assisting you with your issues. There are a number of excellent facilitators out there in our business to assist you! Use the ASAE or an Allied Society directory, select and interview consultants and find the right “fit.” Ask for recommendations, but don’t rely soley on them, as sometimes a “fit” for one association (for example a trade association) may not be a good one for another (a professional/medical society).

19 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X Using a Volunteer From Outside the Association Last Resort Finally, if after reading the preceding pages, you do not wish to hire a professional facilitator for any reason, we would suggest that you find an individual to volunteer to do it for you that is not in the immediate body politic of the association, and better yet, not associated with the association in any way. Remember that it takes about one or two hours of preparation for every hour of facilitation you desire, as well as a variety of member and stakeholder market research and scanning. So ensure you have an individual that is willing to put in the time and effort to get to know the organization, do the necessary interviewing and scanning necessary to ensure a positive result. Make certain the individual has the facilitation skills necessary to get you the positive result you desire and will not abandon you or the process mid-stream.

20 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X NOTES FOR SECTION 1 Getting Ready to Plan: Need for Simple, Creative Comprehensive Planning and Diligence in Selecting Your Facilitator NOTES  _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________  _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________  _________________________________________________________________________ FORWARD TO:____________________________ FOLLOW-UP WITH:_________________________

21 © AMMR - Association Management & Marketing Resources - ISBN X - Strategic Planning and Research and Marketing Workbooks Publication Order Form Purchase either the Marketing Planning Workbook or our Strategic Planning and Research Workbook and receive our “ Guide to Association Web 2.0 and Social Media Marketing and Communication Applications”. The Web 2.0 Social Media Guide provides a detailed listing of Web 2.0 applications and explains how each is used in the overall association marketing and communications mix! Learn how to create and use an Association Social Media Content Brochure to create a Collateral Content Social Media Release (SMR) for your functional area! _____ Purchase one print or CD copy of the 2009 Association Strategic Planning and Research Guide ($295) (Circle Print or CD). _____Add CDROM with print copy $75. _____ Via electronic distribution ( Word Documents) with print copy add $75. _____Purchase one copy of the 2009 Association Marketing and Communications Guide ($295) (Circle Print or CD.) _____ Add CDROM with print copy $75. _____ Via electronic distribution ( Word Documents) with print copy add $75. ____ _____Purchase one copy of Marketing the Nonprofit Association: A Guide to Marketing the Functional Areas of Trade Associations and Professional Societies ($125). (Not available on CD). Additional copies $75 = _________. _____PACKAGE DEAL: Purchase ALL THREE publications above (Two Guides (specify print or CD) and MNPA) for a DISCOUNTED price of $575 _____PACKAGE DEAL: Purchase BOTH Guides above (Strategic Planning & Marketing Planning Guides) for a DISCOUNTED price of $495. For BOTH the Marketing Planning Guide and Marketing the Nonprofit Association, discounted PACKAGE PRICE___$375. _____I have purchased the Marketing Planning Guide and/or the Strategic Planning Guide. Send me the 2008 Guide to Association Web 2.0 Volunteer Leaders, Chapters Or Affiliates CD’s or Versions Of The Guides Electronic versions (CD or Electronic Downloads) available to volunteer leaders, affiliates and chapters — license fees start at $90 per copy for minimum of 10 copies for either Guide. If you order both Guides, both CDs are $75 each. Send me _______Planning Guide CDs, ______Marketing Guide CDs for my affiliates. ______Send me an download version for my volunteer leaders or affiliates. (Indicate which Guide you wish-- _____Strategic Planning ____Marketing.) Call us to confirm specifications of your volunteer leader, Chapter or Affiliate order! 24 hour service! POSTAGE — ADD SHIPPING AND HANDLING FEE: $13.50 (for one publication), $18.50 (for two publications), $22.50 (for all three). (For Overnight Delivery add $40). Use your VISA/ MC/ Discover Card or Check must accompany order. CD ORDER ONLY $9.50 (CD with Guides or books same as Guide only) NAME__________________________________________________________ASSN/ORG______________________________________________ ADDRESS_______________________________________________________CITY_______________________________STATE/ZIP____________ PHONE_______________________________FAX____________________________ ____________________________________________ Mail order form & payment to: AMMR PRESS, 5807 Grosvenor Lane, Suite 100, Bethesda, Maryland, Charge My : Visa MC Discover Card Number : _________ - _________ - _________ - __________ Exp Date: Month ____ Year ______ 3 Digit Code ____ Fax or Credit Card Orders to: or Questions/ Problems? Contact us at AMMR Order Form AMMR Order Form


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