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© 2006 The Finance Project Sustainability Planning: Keys to Success
© 2006 The Finance Project What is Sustainability Planning? The process of sitting down to develop specific strategies and an action plan to help ensure the long-term sustainability of an initiative Includes considering the full range of resources and competencies – financial, political, administrative, managerial – needed to meet long-term goals
© 2006 The Finance Project Why is Planning for Sustainability Important? Many funding sources are short-term in nature We operate in a rapidly changing environment We can’t afford to lose quality programs and important innovations
© 2006 The Finance Project Why Do Sustainability Planning? Clarify where you are and where you want to go Develop strategies for long-term success Provide benchmarks to measure progress Demonstrate the value of your work A written plan can provide overarching guidance for your initiative over time
© 2006 The Finance Project Key Elements of Sustainability 1. Vision 2. Results orientation 3. Strategic financing orientation 4. Adaptability to changing conditions 5. Broad base of community support 6. Key champions 7. Strong internal systems 8. Sustainability plan
© 2006 The Finance Project 1. Vision Clear & shared vision of what you want to achieve Clear vision/mission statement Use the vision to generate buy-in Know how your initiative fits within the larger community Define your scope of activities & scale of operation over time
© 2006 The Finance Project 2. Results Orientation Define success, measure progress over time & share your results Adopt a results framework Be clear about the results you want to achieve Use data to “prove” and “improve” Communicate your results
© 2006 The Finance Project Using Results to Further Your Sustainability Goals Develop systems for collecting and analyzing data Keep it simple and reasonable Know your audience Communicate!, market!, and sell!
© 2006 The Finance Project 3. Strategic Financing Orientation What resources do you need to support your work? What are the expected fiscal needs? Make the best use of existing resources Create partnerships Explore new state and local revenue sources
© 2006 The Finance Project 4. Adaptability to Changing Conditions How do you respond to changes in your funding & policy environments? Monitor announced opportunities for funding Consider new ways to frame your work Identify opportunities to improve policy climate Participate in collaborative advocacy to encourage change Work to improve ability to participate in these efforts
© 2006 The Finance Project 5. Broad Base of Community Support Whose support is critical to achieve your vision? Develop a plan to create a desired identity Nurture community presence & support Encourage family involvement Support public education Build partnerships that foster collaboration rather than competition
© 2006 The Finance Project 6. Key Champions Community leaders who can use power & influence on your behalf Identify key decision makers & opinion leaders Develop an effective outreach plan Cultivate a broad base of champions
© 2006 The Finance Project 7. Strong Internal Systems Do you have the organizational capacity to accomplish your goals? Know & involve the people you need to carry out your mission Develop strong fiscal management, accounting, information and personnel systems Use those systems to review strategies & make changes as needed
© 2006 The Finance Project 8. Sustainability Plan A written plan that describes the initiative’s priorities & action steps Takes into account short- & long-term needs Identifies challenges and/or obstacles Identifies strategies to garner needed resources & overcome challenges Identifies & communicates with key partners
© 2006 The Finance Project Planning for Sustainability: Key Questions What do you want to sustain? At what scale & scope? What will it cost? What resources do you have? What are the barriers? What are viable strategies to achieve your goals?
© 2006 The Finance Project Sustainability Planning: Success Factors Start early! Determine available resources Involve diverse group of stakeholders Big/creative thinkers Decision makers Key partners Users of services Integrate into management routine
© 2006 The Finance Project Additional Resources Sustainability Planning Workbook Other Resources on Financing & Sustainability Available at:
© 2006 The Finance Project Contacting Us The Finance Project 1401 New York Ave, NW Suite 800 Washington, DC
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