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Strategic Planning
Tip Sheet
Step 3 calls for the development of a comprehensive prevention plan. By all intentions,
this can also be called a Strategic Plan –separate from an Evaluation Plan or
Sustainability Plan. The Strategic Plan drives all these other plans by articulating basic
concepts of vision, mission, goals, objectives and activities. The following information
provides some general guidelines about key elements of a strategic plan. As you will see,
there is great flexibility about how your County wants to approach the strategic planning
Strategic planning determines where an organization is going over the next several years,
how it's going to get there and how it'll know if it got there or not. The plan includes
specific products that will direct the County’s prevention activities. Even though you
may have previously developed vision and objectives, the planning process provides an
opportunity for partners and staff to establish common language and involvement in the
County’s prevention system. Prevention services can be greatly enhanced by developing
clear vision and mission statements, objectives, comprehensive strategies, and detailed
action plans.
The Partners for Substance Abuse Prevention (PARTNERS), whose web site is sponsored
by the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) /Substance Abuse and Mental
Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services, defines strategic planning as follows:
A deliberate set of steps that
assesses needs and resources;
defines a target audience and a set of goals and objectives;
plans and designs coordinated strategies with evidence of success;
logically connects these strategies to needs, assets, and desired outcomes; and
measures and evaluates the process and outcomes.
Strategic Planning
There are a variety of ways to approach strategic planning. The way that a strategic plan
is developed depends on the nature of the County prevention leadership, culture of the
County, complexity of the organization's environment, size, expertise of planners, etc.
Similarly, the specific process, planning period, and specific stakeholder participation
can all vary. Most agree that annual review of action plans is critical, but the shelf life of
a Strategic Plan can vary from one to three to five years.
TIP SHEET 5/17/06
Strategic Planning
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