Strategic Planning

Expert Modeled Solutions: Strategic Planning

Strategic Planning

This model empowers individuals by teaching them planning skills to create higher impact within our institutions. 

The results of our recent market study, '15-year Strategic Roadmap for the American Muslim Community,' showed us that our community cannot reach a shared vision in 15 years without focusing on institutional development. In an effort to fill this gap, we chose an important institutional development topic, strategic planning, as one of our pilot projects. With a strategic plan being a central piece to guide all members of the organization to work towards the same goals, we believe planning is one of the first integral steps to help make our institutions stronger.

What Will I learn? 

By taking this course, you will learn the following:

  • The definition of a strategic plan;
  • What type of resources are needed for the process;
  • Exercises that can help implement the process, whether you choose to facilitate the process internally or hire an outside consultant;
  • The process to create or assess your vision and mission statement;
  • The definition of and the process to conduct different types of organizational assessments;
  • The steps to translate the organizational assessment information into a concrete plan; and
  • Tips in how to implement the strategic plan successfully.

In other words, by taking this cousre, you will be empowered with the skills needed to facilitate a strategic plan for your organization.

Even if you choose to work alongside a consultant, you will have the tools and knowledge to help the process run smoothly.

What Does this Model Include?

Our model will walk participants through a 5-step online training, built to help each person understand each component of a strategic plan and provide them the tools for implementation.  Implementation of this course can be done internally by your team members or working in partnership with one of our hand-picked consultants.

The online training will cover the following: 

Step 1: Introduction to Strategic Planning

The first step to strategic planning is understanding what a strategic plan is and why it is important. It also covers what preparation goes into the full process, this includes:

  • How to decide if your organization is in need of a strategic plan;
  • Creating a strategic planning committee who will act as a project lead for the process (1-3 team members);
  • Deciding if your team wants to hire a consultant or facilitate the process internally; and
  • Create or assess an existing vision and mission statement (this is usually a 2-3 hour brainstorming meeting that includes the board and possibly staff).

Step 2:  Organizational Assessment

The second step aims to understand what an organizational assessment is and outline the different types of assessments your organization can take. The three types of assessments include:

  1. Administering an Organizational Assessment Questionnaire: Distributing a questionnaire provided by Whitestone Foundation to all team members of the organization to assess what function areas need the most attention.
  2. Interviewing Key Stakeholders: Interviewing Key Stakeholders involves approaching selected clients, donors, or congregants and asking them a handful of questions to assess what the community’s needs or demands are. These interviews are done in-person or through an free online survey program (i.e survey monkey).
  3. Executing an Opportunity Analysis: An opportunity analysis is done in another team brainstorming meeting to discuss the organization’s haves, needs, fears, and hopes. This is usually a meeting that takes a few hours to four hours.

Please note: Not all organizations have to perform all three types of organizational assessment to have a thorough strategic plan. However, performing an opportunity analysis should not be skipped.

Step 3: Analysis

This step includes taking all of the data gathered from Step 2 and organizing it into a presentable fashion for the rest of the team to understand. This is usually done by your strategic planning committee.

Step 4: Developing Goals and Strategies

The fourth step includes the team working together in another brainstorming meeting to translate the data collected into goals and strategies.

Step 5: Implementation

The process concludes with the team working together to agree how the plan will be implemented and outlining what everyone’s responsibilities are to ensure the plan does not fall through the cracks. For example, this includes incorporating the strategic plan in the staff’s yearly goals, reviewing the plan at every board meeting, or revising the current annual budget in place to fit the needs and demands of the plan. 

Who should take this course?

  • Potential strategic planning committee members;
  • Activists who want to increase their planning skills; and
  • Board or staff members of a nonprofit organization interested in initiating and/or facilitating a strategic planning process for their organization. 

Please note that this training is meant for only one or two members from a team to participant in and disseminate that information to the rest of the team.

Sample Lesson

Still not sure about taking this course? Check out the first lesson without having to sign up: Lesson 1: Introduction to Strategic Planning


So, what are you waiting for? Get started today!


How do I access the model?

You can access the training by clicking on this link: Whitestone Strategic Planning Training

Or contact us at to invite you and your team to the training and a list of consultants you can work with to get your team going. 

I would rather hire a consultant

We can provide that too! Contact us at for referrals to consultants.

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