The Nonprofit Strategy Group bases its approach to strategic planning and capacity building on several best practice methods - or what we like to call "positive practices". In our opinion there is no one best approach that works universally our nonprofit clients. Each organization and its people - staff, board, members, clients, etc. are unique and require a tailored approach to meet a diverse set of needs. That being said, we have chosen to become Certified Appreciative Inquiry (AI) Facilitators through the Center for Appreciative Inquiry.
Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is a holistic and inclusive process that fosters creativity as opposed to taking a problem-solving approach where challenges and threats are the focus. AI invites change through the creation of shared meaning, vision and purpose by building upon the core values and strengths of the organization– resulting in strategic initiatives, actionable items, commitment, and sustainability.
The process may look different depending on the organization, but in general we engage in the following steps;
You can expect a full strategic planning process to take several weeks or months depending on the scope, size of the organization, and who is involved, etc. Our process supports the discovery of new horizons for nonprofit organizations whilst also tending to the more mechanical issues such as setting measurable outcomes, monitoring progress, developing implementation plans, and projecting resource needs. Our resulting plans, therefore, truly are strategic in nature, as they capture not just aspirations but also the actions that need to be taken to realize those aspirations.
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