Road Map to Our Future

By: Barb Griffith, President and CEO

Strategic Planning. It’s a MUST for any business. It is a requirement for most of our funding sources and CARF, our accrediting body. And, most of all, it is a necessary tool for communicating with and among the Board of Directors, employees, 900+ people we serve, and all other stakeholders just where we are going!

We will be developing a new strategic plan in 2014. The current plan was developed before our merger with Family Support Services. So much has changed over the last five years! Our current strategic plan has been our road map; we planned our destination, as well as our various ‘targeted’ stops along the way. As with any long trip, there have been ‘side trips,’ detours, and even breakdowns on the journey, but, overall, we have managed to navigate the organization forward — toward our planned goals. As we near the end of this particular leg of our journey, we are already realizing that we still have so much to do, see and accomplish. Planning a journey for such a large group of stakeholders will take some time, as well as input from everyone involved. We will assemble a group representing various stakeholders to develop the plan and keep communicating all along the way.

I happened to come across an article I wrote in 2003 – ten years ago! At that time, we were just contemplating buying our first property and I wrote about the importance of always ‘looking ahead.’ I have included a paragraph (see below), again, because I think the words are just as relevant today as they were ten years ago.

We must continually ask, “Is there a better way?” The answer is always “yes!” It is wonderful to celebrate the accomplishments of the past, but dangerous to sit and bask in the warmth of today’s success. To do so will impede our future accomplishments. It’s hard to imagine what changes are needed or even possible in the next five years. ‘Enriching the lives of people with disabilities’ is a timeless mission. How we provide services, where we provide services, and what services we provide to fulfill that mission are all variables.

Thanks for being a part of our journey thus far; I hope you stay with us as we strategically design our future destinations!