Applegate Consulting Group

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Photo by Beth Applegate

Strategic Planning

Successful organizations prepare and plan for long-term change, even as they operate in the present. Gradual, ongoing and strategic transition fosters a culture of belonging, and supports efficacy, resiliency, innovation and sustainable people in every system—no matter the size or complexity.

Partner with ACG to guide the facilitation process. We use graphics to help develop your long-term strategy and shorter-term operational plans. Our strategic consulting process and graphic facilitators can also support your organization to develop the internal skills, processes and action steps that utilize the value of problem-solving and Polarity Thinking. 

In response to Covid-19, ACG is currently recommending that clients do not embark upon strategic planning at this time. Instead, we recommend a 12 to 18 month detailed organization-level work plan, with supporting department plans. The next quarter will require leaders to primarily focus on establishing new processes, structures and  position functionality in a new remote-work environment (e.g., changing work schedules, purchasing and distributing laptops and cell phones, employee technical training, employee access to high-speed internet at home, learning new technology). We  are helping clients dust off the ol' SWOT analysis, and complete the internal weakness and strength assessment of the organization's technological capacity. ACG is assiting leaders to establish the organization’s "new normal" baseline. We then facilitate the use of tools like "Force Field Analysis" to support our clients to develop 12-18 month detailed organization-level work plans, with supporting and supporting departmental plans. 

This is a time to go slow in order to excel. Be intentional and deliberate about the powerful questions your organization is asking itself. For the foreseeable future it is important to stay focused on the mission of your institution, and funnel all decisions through the question: Is this MISSION ESSENTIAL? For example, is this initiative, grant, major program and service still essential to our organization mission in the new normal? It is essential that leaders do not simply drive forward, and replicate what they were thinking, planning and doing before Covid-19. If the answer is yes, "X "is MISSION ESSENTIAL, then leaders must realistically name, plan and implement timeline changes to accommodate the remote processes, structures, training and technological change process that all of our clients are facing. 

ACG is adept at multiple methods and models of planning; we will match our specific planning approach to the organization's needs and geographic location. In partnership with our clients, ACG designs and facilitates processes that develop powerful strategic frameworks helping organizations to become more adaptive and collaborative in today's interdependent AND independent, ever-shifting world. ACG facilitators support leaders to establish agreements among the board, staff, network members, foundations and grant partners around shared values and purpose. Our facilitators work to acheive alignment of structures, processes and practices with the organization values.

Central to these processes is developing agreement on the organization's values and mission; then, structures and processes must be aligned to turn those values into behaviors, and the strategic goals into action. Our approach includes processes that examine the whole system—the examination surfaces root causes of problem, it surfaces the capacities needed to address those problems, and it integrates an understanding of how belonging and justice inform and contribute to the pursuit of the organization's mission.

When necessary, we support restructuring, including rethinking positions, roles and responsibilities. In these cases, we provide coaching to leadership across a broad spectrum of competencies and roles as they design and implement an ongoing strategy.

We work with organizations and network partners to identify clear strategic directions—alongside methods of adaptation, learning and behavior change—that allow them to navigate complexity and continuous change.

Bird Egg with Opening - Photo by Beth Applegate
Photo by Beth Applegate

"In my twelve years' experience as a nonprofit professional, I have rarely encountered someone with Beth Applegate's range of skill in providing an organizational plan that closely fits with the heart of an organization. Her ability to assess the challenges of an organization in fulfilling their missions is rooted in her commitment to the roots of organizational and human development, which makes her a perfect match for social change organizations. In addition, her finely tuned facilitation skills are a match for any organizational conflict."
- Deputy Director

Alpaca - Photo by Beth Applegate
Photo by Beth Applegate

"I have had the good fortune of working with Beth Applegate both as a strategic planning consultant and as the chair of the board of directors on which I served. She possesses an extraordinary ability to guide others through the planning process in a manner that energizes and engages all involved. The end product proved to be a valuable tool that truly helped shape the work of the organization. Likewise, Beth's leadership abilities are exceptional. She leads with clarity and wisdom, always communicating and commanding respect."
- Board Chair

Bee in Honeycomb - Photo by Beth Applegate
Photo by Beth Applegate

"Beth Applegate brings years of experience and expertise by which progressive causes can benefit. Beth becomes one with your organization – truly committed to your mission and purpose. She is a master at building consensus and at guiding an organization through the strategic planning process to make vision reality. She leaves you with a blueprint for achieving your plan's goals that far exceeds expectations."
- Deputy Director

Contact Us About Strategic Planning Services

(301) 535-6539

Service Area
Nationwide & Worldwide

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