Leadership Coaching on Small Nonprofit Planning Part One

Leadership Coaching on Small Nonprofit Planning Part One, will allow you to take some time to reflect on what your organization's attitude is toward "planning."

I think you'll find it a valuable exercise to examine the next 8 practices, and see if adjustments might help your organization, and its mission, moving forward.  

17. People Support the Stated Plan for the Organization Moving Forward


This is Practice 17 of 80

Where are you going? Are you moving forward? To those who have it, the value of a master plan, or strategic plan, is evident.

It is a living, fluid document that provides direction and a means to carry out the vision. Maximize its value by actively seeking the input and involvement of all stakeholders.

Don’t keep the master plan privy to a few people. Broadcast it and include anyone who is interested in being a part of what is developing.

  • Is there any sense of secrecy to your master plan? For what reason?
  • How many people have been involved in its development?
  • How can many more be included in its ongoing relevancy?
  • Is it available and visible to all? 

Why This Practice is Important

People are drawn to an organization that know where they want to go or feel called and compelled to go. They are more apt to volunteer their time to something that is moving forward.

The Key Concept, Attitude or Action That Drives This Practice


The best plans are not always dictated from the top, but inclusive and developed organization-wide.

An Expansive Thought

People take ownership and develop long-term commitments when they are asked to participate in the long-term direction of the organization. They don't have to do it all, but they have fully bought in because they gave input.

An Action Point

Increasingly let your planning reflect all of the stakeholders involved in your organization?

18. During Decision Making, Options are Weighed Against the Master Plan


This is Practice 18 of 80

The board has something to refer to during major decision making.

Having taken the time to develop a comprehensive plan, decisions come easier. Maintenance, upgrades and capital projects can be scheduled according to plan.

Programs can be introduced and are more likely to succeed with a plan. Long-term staffing initiatives are more evident with a plan.

  • What directions may you have followed that are not consistent with the master plan?
  • How often do you refer to the master plan in your discussions?
  • Are there presently discussions on the table that could be improved or assisted by tying them into the master plan? 

Why This Practice is Important

Decisions come easier when there is some solid criteria to measure them against.

The Key Concept, Attitude or Action That Drives This Practice


Making good decisions is absolutely critical to success.

An Expansive Thought

Every area can be checked against a master plan so the efforts of staff and the resources available can be harnessed in the most effective manner.

An Action Point

A carefully made master plan makes the best use of human and physical resources. Begin one.

19. Decisions Are Based on Well Researched Information


This is Practice 19 of 80

If information is important for making decisions, get the correct data.

One person might “think” a course of action is right, but it is more powerful to “know”. Take the time to get the information that stands scrutiny.

You may have to contract out the research or projection-making function, but it will serve you well.

  • Could it be possible that you sometimes make assumptions about what you believe is true without checking the facts? In what areas? 
  • Has this ever caused problems in the past?
  • What can you do to avoid it happening again?
  • Who gathers the facts upon which you base your decision making? Do you know how they get their information?

Why This Practice is Important

Faulty information leads to poor decision making which leads to ineffective ministry.

The Key Concept, Attitude or Action That Drives This Practice


Assumptions at best are only correct part of the time. Facts are always correct. Get the facts and then draw your assumptions from them.

An Expansive Thought

We can always do better with some minor adjustments based on the facts.

An Action Point

If you feel you are being ineffective, ask yourself what assumptions you have been acting on, what the truth really is, and then act on that truth.

20. The Master Plan is Carefully Modified as Needed


This is Practice 20 of 80

A master plan is never “cast in stone” so that it restricts the organization.

Circumstances change and flexibility is important. People may have worked hard and passionately on their part of the strategy, but they must realize that going in new directions can sometimes get even better results.

Being tied to something that will no longer work effectively or be in the best interest of the organization only minimizes the chances of success.

  • Is there a need to be more open to change and flexibility?
  • What is in the way of that happening?
  • How would you recognize if something better came along?
  • Is your master plan holding you back? Does it lack vision?
  • Does your plan keep you in maintenance mode or draw you forward to new possibilities?

Why This Practice is Important

An inflexible document may restrict the organization from responding to new information or realities. 

The Key Concept, Attitude or Action That Drives This Practice


Flexibility means responding to the new while building on the solid foundation of what has come before.

An Expansive Thought

A master plan should continue to be improved so it can serve the purposes for which the organization exists. Serving a document is backwards.

An Action Point

Identify the two most restrictive elements of your master plan. Are there steps you need to take to modify it?

This is the end of Leadership Coaching on Small Nonprofit Planning Part One. Part Two contains the next 4 practices.

How Will You Use Leadership Coaching on Small Nonprofit Planning Part One?

How will you and your leadership team use Leadership Coaching on Small Nonprofit Planning Part One? 

You have an opportunity to examine the whole organization's attitude and practices related to planning. Take advantage of taking a critical look and notice where any adjustments might be made to improve the organization. 

If you wish Executive Coaching for yourself or members of your senior leadership contact me here. We can have a conversation to discuss what coaching might look like. 

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