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How To Break Down a Strategic Plan

Step Two: Reverse Engineering The Strategy.

Our last newsletter discusses how to dig up previous work for the purpose of gathering information so you can thoughtfully consider the next set of goals for the year to come. By knowing where you’ve come from -what has worked, what hasn’t, and what strides have been made- it is much easier to envision where your are going and how to get there.

With a clear direction forward, you may begin to set goals, and consequently set the route to achieving those goals.

This is the area where I need constant reminding. Goals don’t magically get achieved; it takes constant effort to move forward, to arrive at a destination. Nonprofits are so tightly constrained that putting out fires or attending to the squeakiest wheel can become the main focus. But that doesn’t move the organization further along.

Without a plan of action, a goal is just a wish. If, for example, your goal is to increase your donor base by 100 people, then you need a plan to work on a that consistently. Perhaps you have events or seasons when many people connect with your organization, and at other times very few people connect, your incremental goals should reflect that.

For example:

So, you want to grow your donor base. How does that happen? How do you connect with new or lapsed donors? How many phone calls do you need to make before someone makes a donation?

In this spreadsheet, it is easy to see how each week will take shape. The intention behind this method of planning is to focus on moving forward, not just getting things done.

Next newsletter will discuss how to turn your strategic plan into an info-graphic.