Creating a Strategic Vision for Your Nonprofit Organization

Tips to Create A Solid Strategic Vision

Sometimes in life, the simplest things can be the most difficult. This is often the case with creating your organization’s vision. While mission answers the questions, “what is your purpose, and why do you exist,” vision answers the questions, “Where are you headed, and what’s your future direction?”

As a former CEO, Dennis C. Miller knows firsthand of the daily difficulties and challenges everyone faces managing an organization’s day-to-day operations. Still, a leader needs to articulate their vision for all stakeholders to know. Today, an effective leader must work in partnership with their board to create a future direction. Successful leaders know that nothing drives an organization like an inspirational, worthwhile, and achievable vision for your future.

Your strategic vision should be realistic, measurable, and create an attractive, more successful future than your organization’s present.

Questions to consider:

  • What is your organization’s vision for the future?
  • Has your current vision become stale and in need of revitalization?
  • Are you still passionate about achieving it?
  • Does your vision inspire your staff, board, volunteers, and donors to achieve it?

There are thousands and thousands of individuals living in every city and state in our country who provide inspirational leadership in their communities. These visionary thinkers have passion, courage, confidence, and strength of will. Visionary leaders are willing to take calculated risks and possess the attribute of persistence.

Unabashed persistence allows the visionary leader to confront and overcome all the difficulties they face, including others’ opposition and the lack of resources. The difference between a successful leader and an unsuccessful one often comes down to drive and persistence.

How can successful leaders create their organization’s vision?

  1. Develop a Steering or Ad Hoc Committee of creative and future thinking stakeholders.
  2. Schedule a board or leadership retreat and engage an expert facilitator to work in small group settings and build consensus on your vision.
  3. Focus your team’s attention on the key critical issues and strategic goals necessary to overcome them.
  4. Go on a hike in a pleasant environment or sit on a comfortable chair without any distractions. Dream about what you would like your organization to achieve in the future.

Creating a vision can be a highly motivating process to inspire everyone to produce the desired outcomes. The next step is to determine your organization’s key strategic goals to achieve and reach your vision. Identify each goal, the responsible parties, and estimated timetables for completion. Each month track your progress with red, yellow, or green stickers.

Green stickers mean all is achieved or going in the right direction. Yellow stickers mean progress is being made, but a few issues must be worked out. Red stickers mean nothing is being achieved or implemented, and it’s time to focus on your organizational roadblocks.

The final and most crucial component of this process is to ensure that all stakeholders, internal and external, are strategically aligned to focus and be committed to achieving one goal: your organization’s vision. This might require a new set of board and leadership competencies as well.

For assistance with creating a strategic vision for your company, get in touch with Dennis C. Miller Associates Inc. Their team of professionals can help your organization develop and facilitate your new strategic vision and a well-thought-out plan to achieve it. Contact Dennis C. Miller today!