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Strategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations: A Practical Guide for Dynamic Times, 3rd Edition

ISBN: 978-1-118-76814-3
304 pages
April 2015
Strategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations: A Practical Guide for Dynamic Times, 3rd Edition (1118768140) cover image

Description

The bestselling guide to nonprofit planning, with proven, practical advice

Strategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations describes a proven method for creating an effective, organized, actionable strategy, tailored to the unique needs of the nonprofit organization. Now in its third edition, this bestselling manual contains new information about the value of plans, specific guidance toward business planning, and additional information about the strategic plan document itself. Real-world case studies illustrate different planning and implementation scenarios and techniques, and the companion website offers templates, tools, and worksheets that streamline the process. The book provides expert insight, describing common misperceptions and pitfalls to avoid, helping readers craft a strategic plan that adheres to the core values of the organization.

A well-honed strategic plan helps nonprofit managers set priorities, and acquire and allocate the resources necessary to achieve their goals. It also provides a framework for handling challenges, and keeps the focus on the organization's priorities. Strategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations is an excellent source of guidance for managers at nonprofits of every size and budget, helping readers to:

  • Identify the reasons for planning, and gather information from internal and external stakeholders
  • Assess the current situation accurately, and agree on priorities, mission, values, and vision
  • Prioritize goals and objectives for the plan, and develop a detailed implementation strategy
  • Evaluate and monitor a changing environment, updating roles, goals, and parameters as needed

Different organizations have different needs, processes, resources, and priorities. The one thing they have in common is the need for a no-nonsense approach to planning with practical guidance and a customizable framework. Strategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations takes the fear out of planning, with expert guidance on the nonprofit's most vital management activity.

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Table of Contents

About the Third Edition xi

Preface xiii

Intended Audience xiii

Structure of the Book xiv

Supporting Resources xiv

How to Use This Book xvi

A Word About Words xvi

Acknowledgments xvii

Introduction 1

Strategy and Planning 2

Why Plan? 2

What Strategic Planning Is Not 4

Keys to Effective Strategic Planning 5

What Is Strategy? 6

The Strategic Planning Process 9

Other Considerations in Strategic Planning 17

Strategic Planning Is Alive and Well! 24

Section One First Steps 27

Chapter 1 Step 1: Set Up for Success 29

Identify Outcomes 30

Check Conditions for Success 32

Plan for Data Collection 34

Anticipating Other Needed Research 36

Design Your Strategic Planning Process 37

Create an Organization Profile 42

Chapter 2 Step 2: Stakeholder Engagement 59

Engage Internal Stakeholders 59

Gather Input from External Stakeholders 63

Synthesize Stakeholder Input 65

Incorporate External Input into Your SWOT Analysis to Update Critical Issues and Questions 66

Chapter 3 Step 3: Mission, Vision, Values 77

Revisit Your Mission Statement 78

Write Your Vision Statement 84

Articulate Your Fundamental Values 87

Section Two Strategic Analysis 97

Chapter 4 Step 4: Environmental Scan 99

When Is Scenario Planning Helpful? 100

Organize Your Research, Summarize Findings 102

Chapter 5 Step 5: Theory of Change and Program Portfolio 109

Needs Assessment and Value Proposition 111

Program Effectiveness 112

Competitive Analysis 114

Theory of Change 119

Draft Future Program Portfolio 122

Chapter 6 Step 6: Business Model 139

Summarize Revenue and Expenses 139

Historical Summary and Key Questions 140

Current Program Revenue and Expenses 141

Articulate Your Business Model 143

Business Model Analysis 143

Develop Summary Findings 152

Chapter 7 Step 7: Organization Capacity 157

Elements of Organization Capacity 158

Activities for This Step 163

Identify Requirements for Each Category of Capacity 163

Determine How to Carry Out Assessment 163

Agree on Priorities to Include in the Strategic Plan 165

Chapter 8 Step 8: Leadership 173

Assess Leadership, Summarize Implications 175

Section Three Set Your Course 183

Chapter 9 Step 9: Complete Your Strategic Plan 185

Summarize Strategic Decisions 185

Draft the Complete Strategic Plan 187

Conduct a Thorough Review Process 192

Dressing Up Your Strategic Plan for Public Distribution 192

Strategic Planning Committee Celebration and Debrief 192

Chapter 10 Step 10: Using Your Plan Successfully 211

Help People Make Required Changes 212

Write Detailed Annual Operation Plans 214

Create a Dashboard to Monitor Implementation 219

Develop a Dynamic Approach to Watch for Changing Trends 221

Conclusion A Word to Leaders 229

Appendix A Sample Workplans for Abbreviated, Moderate, and Extensive Planning Processes 231

Appendix B Tips on Using Task Forces 243

Appendix C External Stakeholders 247

Appendix D How to Use the Matrix Map 253

Appendix E Leadership Assessment Survey 259

Appendix F Selected References 269

About the Companion Website 271

About the Authors 273

Index 275

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Author Information

MICHAEL ALLISON is president of Michael Allison Consulting, an independent consulting practice working with nonprofits and foundations to achieve greater organizational effectiveness in support of progressive social change.

JUDE KAYE is an organization development and strategic planning consultant who provides executive coaching for nonprofit managers. A nationally respected trainer, she works with nonprofit agencies on planning, financial management, organizational development, and other areas.

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