Strategic Reality Check
Instructors: George Needham, Joan Frye Williams
Format: Meeting Room
Fee: $75 for those in the California library community.
Times change and plans need to change with them. If your library has experienced a significant budget, staffing, or management upheaval, you should probably take a fresh look at your strategy. We're all familiar with planning processes that take months to develop and require endless meetings. There is another path.
The Strategic Reality Check is a process developed by consultants Joan Frye Williams and George Needham to assist libraries in moving quickly to revise and update their strategic plans, or to create entirely new plans as needed.
In this workshop you will learn how to address questions such as
- How does your community see itself and its future?
- How well does the service you currently provide match the goals set out in your public statements?
- What course corrections will enable your library to align itself more effectively with your community?
- What criteria should inform day-to-day decision making about policies and services?
- How will you sustain your strategy into the future?
This course will prepare you to conduct a straightforward, pragmatic process that uses existing data and simple decision tools to create a strategic plan that is community-focused, timely, and flexible.
Workshop Description: This one-day interactive workshop will provide participants with the skills they need to update or create their library's strategic plan in a quick, cost-effective manner. Through individual and group exercises, including real world examples, participants will work with a set of specially developed planning tools and learn skills for facilitating the strategic reality check process in their own libraries. All participants will receive a set of decision-making checklists and worksheets, as well as practical tips about how to tackle typical strategic planning problems and avoid common planning pitfalls.
Preliminary Course Outline
- When to do a strategic reality check
- How this process differs from other planning methods
- Who should be involved
- Your investment of time and resources
- Service Assessment
- Mining existing service-related data
- What do your communications say about your priorities?
- Cost-effective observation and assessment techniques
- Comparing what you say to what you do
- Community Check-in
- Mining existing community data
- Comparing library plans with other community plans
- Cost-effective visioning techniques
- Articulating the community's vision
- Decision-making Criteria
- Understanding how your professional principles inform your strategic thinking
- Acknowledging real world constraints
- Mission, vision, values check
- Identifying and communicating decision-making criteria
- Identifying strategic opportunities
- Identifying strategic partners
- Evaluating service options for sustainability
- Keep, change, expand, or discontinue?
- Assembling the Plan
- Moving Forward
- Implementation roles and responsibilities
Who Should Attend: This workshop is appropriate for anyone in the California library community, especially emerging leaders, who would like to do a better and more cost-effective job of strategic planning in a changing environment. This workshop is also suitable for library trustees and commissioners and other non-MLS policy-makers.
Check-in: 8:30 to 9:00 AM Instruction: 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM