The sheer volume, complexity and diversity of issues association directors and executives must understand and address today is dizzying. In our current uncertain and complex environment, where should associations focus their time, effort and resources in order to...
Scenario Planning for Uncertainty
What will the world look like in six months? Twelve months? Two Years? Scenario planning helps associations, nonprofits and other organizations strategize in an environment shaped by uncertainty and where different outcomes are possible.
How Often Should You Update Your Strategic Plan?
How will history remember this past decade? Never in our lifetime (or some may argue in human history) has so much changed in such as short period of time. For many associations, three and five-year strategic planning cycles are no longer practical given the volatility facing their organization and their members. New approaches to strategy focus on adapting, innovating and experimenting an organization’s way to success. To be effective, today’s strategic plans need to be living documents that evolve continuously over time.
Replacing the Engine While Flying the Plane: The Association Executive’s Guide to 21st Century Change
Leading Your Association Over Uncharted Territory Association executives and directors have been hearing for years now that change is coming. Membership apathy and decline. Decreasing revenues. Industry consolidation. Competition for education, other programs and...
Your Association Will Look Very Different Ten Years From Now: What Are You Doing About It?
Reading this article on technology trends for 2016 got me thinking: It's hard to believe that just a decade ago, most of us had never heard of the term 'smartphone.' Personally, I am always a little panicked when my phone is not within arm's reach. Also, I will admit...
A Look Into the Future of Associations
I think associations of the future will be markedly different from today. A number of changes are coming (or have already started happening), but here are three of the bigger shifts I think we will see over the course of the next several years:
The Portgage Group’s, Alan Ward Presents at #CSAE2015
See us at the CSAE Conference this week in Calgary! The Portage Group Senior Associate, Alan Ward, has been asked to be a presenter at the upcoming Canadian Society of Association Executives Conference #CSAE2015 in Calgary on October 28th . Alan will be presenting on...
Understanding What Nonprofits Do
By Jack Shand, Executive Partner. The Portage Group In an earlier article on The Characteristics of Executive Leadership, I outlined what employees in the nonprofit sector do. But what do nonprofit organizations do? First, two observations: Observation one is that...
Turning Your Nonprofit Strategy Into A Reality: The Implementation Plan
As the saying goes, “failure to plan is planning to fail.” Just as important as your association or nonprofit’s strategy is an implementation plan to put all of those great ideas into action! Here is a simple implementation plan template to help get the ball rolling in achieving your strategy.
Show Your Members They Drive the Agenda With a One-Page Strategic Plan
There are a number of tools you can use to succinctly and effectively communicate to your members that they drive the association agenda. The one-page strategic plan is a great way to present your strategic plan in a succinct way to your members – the key is to make it clear that their input is being used to drive the agenda. Below is one example of a one-page member-driven strategic plan. Here is an example.
Stuck in a Rut? Four Ideas to Get the Juices Flowing at Your Next Association Staff or Board Meeting
Whether your association, charity or not-for-profit staff or board is on autopilot, or whether you are just stuck in a rut when it comes to coming up with an effective and creative way to address an opportunity, challenge or niggling problem, here are a few approaches you could try at your next meeting or board retreat.
Connecting the Dots: Communicating Association Strategy to Your Members
Most associations seek member feedback. Many take this feedback into account in their planning activities….but if this information doesn’t get back to members, all that hard work will have been for nothing. This in mind, there are a number of effective ways to communicate your association’s strategy as an ongoing means to keep members in the loop about what is happening and how their needs and priorities drive the agenda…
Making Strategy Happen
The value in planning is not in creating strategy but in implementing it. The purpose of planning includes seeing the positive, tangible results accruing to the organization by instituting and achieving strategic change.
Yet too many organizations see their planning process fail. The strategic plan sits ignored on a bookshelf; the volunteers and staff involved lament the wasted money and lost time in a failed process, understandably reluctant to repeat the same experience again.
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