“I’ve been through ‘umteen’ planning exercises. This was the first time I could see it and get my arms around a planning process.”
“We really did change our focus from nit-picky to strategy-focused management.”

“Drucker is the best process for us – getting us to focus on customers and results is a big transformation that we haven’t been able to make in previous planning processes. It has helped us get out of “stove-pipe” program thinking and into agency-wide, coordinated service to our customers.”

“The Nonprofit Strategic Positioning planning process gave us a clear sense of where we want to be and what we need to do to get there. It felt both logical and organic.”

“Thank you for being patient with us and meeting us where we are, not where we ‘should be,’ and thank you for believing in our mission and the difference we make in the world.”

“You helped us get outside of ourselves and reach out for information and collaboration. We’ve been way too focused on what we’re doing and ‘inside’ – you helped us see what our impact can be in the communities we serve, in the ‘outside’ world.”

The best planning design starts with where you are now and integrates the strengths of various planning models into a seamless process that gets you where you want to be.

Where you are now:  there are excellent internal capacity assessment tools that were not available a decade ago, designed for small, medium, and large organizations.  External data scans help you think ‘outside the box’ and pay attention to what’s relevant in the outside world so you can focus and prioritize where you want to be.

You design strategic directions or goals for the future that you want to achieve and how to get there.  You prioritize the outcomes – your impact in the world -by directing or strengthening your capacity for organizational growth and determining the costs for several strategies toward each goal.

Implementation gives you the road map to achieve your strategies and your goals: the multiple pathways that together will get you where you want to be. These pathways include internal processes such as individual training and skill building, organization-wide system improvement, external marketing and communications, and articulation of clear outcomes of your vision and how you will change the world.

There are many models or templates for planning, and the key to a good planning process is to blend elements from several into a seamless, productive process for your organization.

Sample of a summary of a strategic plan [pdf]

Planning flowchart

Here’s an Example of a Dashboard:

Dashboard Example

Here’s information on Barriers of Strategy Execution:

Barriers of Strategy Execution

Appreciative inquiry

Appreciative Inquiry˙ is the cooperative search for the best in people, their organizations, and the world around them. It involves systematic discovery of what gives a system “life” when it is most effective and alive.

A design typically begins with people’s stories of their best experiences in the organization, what “life giving factors” were present, and what wishes they would have for the organization.


Find out more at


Drucker logoThe Drucker Self-Assessment focuses work on five simple, profound questions that aim your organization toward results:

What is our mission?
Who is our customer?
What does our customer value?
What are our results?

What is our plan?


Future Search Conference logo

Future Search Conference brings people together to discover common ground, create commitment, and build community.The strengths in this planning methodology result from:

The “whole system” in the room
Setting a global context for local action
Focus on common ground and the future
Not focus on problems and conflicts
Increase capacity through group skills



Balanced scorecard

Balanced Scorecard focuses on value-added service to customers, internal systems and processes, skills and training, and financial goals, all with outcome measurements.The Balanced Scorecard transposes your strategic planning goals into a cause-and-effect matrix that demonstrates how your goals interact with each other, produce results, and advance your mission.
It’s a management tool that keeps everyone on the same page and shows your collective progress toward your goals.

It’s a way of translating your goals from a Drucker customer-focused process into a implementation plan. They’re based on a similar orientation toward your customers.

It can be used as a common template for action planning that results from a Future Search or other conference- or summit-type planning process. It is a common “map” that allows you to manage the work of diverse action planning teams that may have little interaction while they work independently.



A BSC Template:

Public Sector Strategy Map Template


The BSC for an airline ground turn-around plan:

Southwest Airlines

Illustrative Example of Southwest Airlines


BSC Measures of Success in the Public Sector:

BSC Measures

BSC Measures of Success in the Public Sector


Strategy Mapping:

Strategy Mapping

Strategy Mapping