“My question is always are you actually doing anything about that? Are you halving off 20% of the chief staff officers time to deal with that? Are you putting together a team of staff to deal with that? Have you appointed somebody at an appropriately senior level to deal with that? If not, let’s not pretend it’s going to happen.” – Meredith Low, Founder, Meredith Low Consulting
Whenever an organization reevaluates itself or starts a new initiative, it can be confusing as to where and how to start. Everyone has heard the words “strategy” and “tactic,” but not everyone knows how to use each to complement the other. That’s why Meredith Low joins Driving Participation to clear up the differences between the two and to give insight into how each can be used effectively. Before either is used, Meredith explains that you need to have a clear idea of what it is your organization aims to do and the problems it is going to solve in supporters’ lives. It then takes convincing a board that a strategic plan is necessary and getting them to come committed to it. Finally, tactics are the specific actions that are executed to put the strategy in action. She suggests that if you have trouble visualizing strategy and tactics, think of objectives your organization sets as the middle ground between the two. Learning to use each effectively in all areas of your organization will help you reach both your short and long-term goals more effectively.
Meredith and Beth discuss:
• How nonprofits and associations are “entrepreneurial” in nature
• Ways to ask your members what problems of theirs need solving
• Which parts of your plan leave more room for experimentation
• Getting boards involved with strategic planning
• When strategy isn’t the most important consideration
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