Community Living, Inc. has partnered with High Five Strategies to outline and work toward a strategic vision of what our organization should look like in the future. A committee consisting of Board members, staff, and other stakeholders have identified goals and deliverables needed to make our vision a reality by 2024.

Our Strategic Goals

The team developed the below goal statements – a Picture of Success in 2024. These are statements we expect to be demonstrably true at the end of the plan period. The descriptions and targets listed below create the focus and foundation for the strategic plan.


  • Day Hab/SSA has a thriving and differentiated social enterprise or volunteer opportunity for its members.
  • SSA supports multiple models of support and service delivery.
  • Adult Rec is a dynamic and enriching program that facilitates community inclusion in all it does.

Organizational Capacity

  • We have clearly defined and communicated the roles & responsibilities of both the administrative and programmatic staff (coordinator and up) and are confident that work is effectively distributed.
  • Our organizational structure best supports efficient program administration and delivery and is aligned with the needs and life stages of the members we serve.
  • We have a leadership team with the capacity to think strategically and the expertise and knowledge to sustain the organization – to include our board.
  • We prioritize and foster optimal use of tech for both administrative and programmatic purposes.
  • Our geographic and programmatic footprints are flexible and able to adapt with the needs of our community.
  • We have explored strategic partnerships and made a decision to partner or commit to internal growth and maintaining current programming.
  • We have regular discussions with all team members regarding their professional goals and development and have plans in place for our high potential employees.


  • We have researched payment models and viable funding streams in an effort to make our programs affordable to all (e.g. private pay, insurance, Medicare, state funding, grants, etc.).
  • We have programmatic and financial targets for all programs and routinely report on performance to ensure we are best deploying resources.
  • All programs are financially sustainable.

Strategic Priorities

Deepen our commitment to innovation and inclusion, reviewing our program portfolio for opportunities to introduce new approaches and business models that will improve our ability to deliver value to families and members.

Design and implement an organizational structure that best supports programmatic, administrative, and leadership needs while also setting a solid path for leadership succession.

Diversify and grow funding streams and other sources to sustain long term financial health and support continued innovation.

What it Means for Employees:

Increased opportunities to grow your career at Community Living, Inc.

Clearer communication across the organization

Organizational support to help you do your job more efficiently and effectively

Near-Term Objectives

Phase One

  • Develop an Internal Communications Playbook that includes content, channels, and cadence.
  • Capture lessons learned from new hires in the past 12 months and rebuild the New Employee Orientation framework to better support employee integration and development.
  • Rollout Communications Playbook and train on new channels to employees.
  • Develop organization-wide sensitivity training/ongoing campaign to reset our attitudes and approaches with our clients and each other.
  • Analyze our Retention Program execution and efficacy and develop a plan to consistently act on the data and information being gathered.
  • Evaluate and define roles & responsibilities
    – Clarify supervisor responsibilities
    – Identify gaps and inefficiencies (e.g. duplicative efforts)
    – Standardize Job Descriptions (90% standard across org and 10% specific to program)
    – Include KPIs for each position
    – Salary Bands (understand funding restrictions)
  • Explore opportunities to centralize program functions to increase efficiencies and improve program offerings
  • Add a form to the monthly financial reporting to capture impact
  • Create and implement a Donor Engagement and Stewardship Plan.

Phase Two

  • Build an employment model that supports interested part-time employees transitioning to full-time by working with multiple programs.
  • Identify several growth paths/opportunities for employees to advance in the organization. Include clearly scaffolded progression as well as alternative opportunities w/ eligibility requirements/preferences for each move.
  • Assess strategic alliance opportunities to ensure we can continue to meet our mission objectives and make recommendations to Board for FY 22 & 23.
  • Develop Program Scorecards with quantitative and qualitative targets
  • Investigate and establish sustainability breakpoints for programs

Phase Three

  • Develop a plan to grow the endowment fund with benchmarks.
  • Explore Other Income Sources and provide analysis and recommendations to Board.
  • Explore Federal & State Rules and Regulations to identify opportunities to introduce different residential models
  • Lobby and advocate at Federal & State level for funding to be individualized/person-centered.
  • Explore opportunities to pay more per hour to increase retention and decrease overtime
  • Add future (personal/professional) development goals section and discussion to annual performance appraisal.
  • Develop a proposal that supports a co-operative or revenue model with similar organizations to improve our training offerings while also making them more financially sustainable
  • Identify our high-potential employees and develop a program to support them.

What We’ve Accomplished (so far)

  • Started sending a weekly email to all staff
  • Selected an Employee Engagement Software platform and Recognition Software to roll out in FY22
  • Surveyed staff about current employee culture
  • Surveyed supervisors for suggestions about the current NEO/Hiring/Onboarding process
  • Assembled a committee focused on improving the NEO process
  • Reviewed the current timeline and follow-up for retention surveys
  • Started meeting about potential changes to salary bands
  • Made wage adjustments for client-facing positions based on tenure in current positions
  • Met with an external messaging consultant and created an enhanced messaging plan for donor engagement
  • Created dashboards in Raiser’s Edge
  • Met to review current staffing ratios and open positions
  • Procured list of “who is where” and budgeted positions
  • Created a way to charge accrued benefit time to the appropriate department
  • Discussed ways financial breakeven can come from growth and/or downsizing
  • Connected with all program directors to establish appropriate and applicable roles within each department
  • Established required qualifications (education, experience, skills, abilities and general trainings) for each role as well as a plan for how to attain said qualifications
  • Created a list of potential organizations, companies and affiliations that could be strategic alliances
  • Participated in comprehensive training courses in Strategic Transition Planning and Strategic Alliances (presented by United Way of Greater St. Louis)
  • Created a project plan for creating program scorecards
  • Improved internal communications agency-wide through the addition of a weekly staff newsletter and selection of a communication platform
  • Introduced a new hybrid model of New Employee Orientation
  • Updated job description templates for consistency across all jobs
  • Implemented wage adjustments for client-facing positions based on tenure in current position
  • Revised salary bands agency-wide
  • Created a plan for increased donor engagement and stewardship
  • Started capturing impact snapshots on monthly financial reporting
  • Began exploration of strategic alliances and joined a small committee created by the DDRB to explore further collaborations around the DSP crisis
  • Developed program scorecards with new quantitative and qualitative targets
  • Opened investigation of sustainability breakpoints for programs
  • Initiated a review of our current hiring processes
  • Identified growth paths/opportunities for employees to advance within the organization
  • Trained directors and supervisors to use Microsoft Teams
  • Identified key values for our organizational culture
  • Reviewed software that could help us recognize employees
  • Implemented wage adjustments for client-facing positions based on tenure in current position
  • Reviewed and updated job description template
  • Met with team leaders to gather feedback about the usefulness of currently measured outcomes
  • Selected eight agency metrics and 3 metrics for each program to use on program scorecards
  • Created an endowment page on our website and started sharing it with donors
  • Formed a committee to review the current hiring process
  • Identified training modules that can be leveraged for supervisor training
  • Developed an outline for a new “Supervisor 101” guide
  • Researched potential resources for training
  • And More!