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Strategic, Business, & Facility Planning

Planning is important…and it can also be fun. A successful plan can be a unifying drumbeat for an organization.

Plans can have a long-term or a short-term focus. They can encompass all of the organization or focus on a specific area. The two essential ingredients for a plan? Commitment from participants and time to have the conversations necessary to develop a good plan.

How It Works

We can design the planning process, conduct interviews and research, facilitate the development of the plan and even write the plan. Planning processes can be brief—3-5 meetings—or can take 6 months or more.

We will recommend an approach to planning based on your organization’s needs and history and availability for planning meetings. Here are summaries of two types of plans:

What is in a business plan?

  • Mission and vision
  • Strategy/case statement
  • Board role
  • Plan for operations, staffing, and facilities
  • Multi-year budget
  • Funding plan

What is in a strategic plan?

A full-fledged strategic plan will address all of the areas below. If you do not have the time and resources to complete a full plan we have several methods that will get you some of the benefits of  strategic planning at a lower cost and time commitment.

  • Environmental scan or research into your field
  • Re-examined mission and/or vision
  • Organizational strategies that will guide day-to-day decisions
  • Prioritized goals
  • Objectives and activities for each goal
  • Multi-year budget
  • Funding plan
  • Stakeholder communications plan

For all plans, we recommend that you form a cross-functional team of five to eight that is empowered to make decisions on behalf of the organization. Discuss with your 501 Commons consultant how to involve your board.

Facility planning

We can help you clarify and document your space requirements and gather information helpful for architects or real estate brokers. If you need to solicit community input about a new facility or a major change in a facility, using our service corps members to engage the community can be a big help since they can bring a neutral voice to what is often a volatile situation.


Our consultants bring skill at managing planning and a fresh point of view to the process. They can guide the planning process so that the conversation is rich and constructive, and so that limited resources are put to the best possible use. They can also challenge your thinking about seemingly unsolvable problems and help you:

  • Find out what your stakeholders think of your organization and what they want in the future
  • Identify trends in your organization and in the environment that are important to factor into planning
  • Build a case for fundraising
  • Determine what partnerships and alliances you need to be successful
  • Align the way your staff and board see the future