Shared Planning and Strategic Plans

8 Shared Palnning and Strategic Plans

The Public Health Accreditation Board defines strategic planning as "a process for defining and determining an organization's roles, priorities, and direction" and serves as "a guide for making decisions on allocating resources and taking action to pursue strategies and priorities." Strategic plans are formal written documents developed by program staff and partners. Shared planning is informal communication and collaboration that promotes cross-sectoral action and goal setting among program staff and partners.

The goal is to have a dedicated strategic plan that specifically addresses how the LHD will address the intersection of suicide, overdose, and ACEs prevention and a shared plan for implementation. LHDs who are interested in addressing the intersection of suicide, overdose, and ACEs but are early in their efforts may not yet have the capacity to develop a formal strategic plan specific to this intersection work. For these teams, increasing capacity in this area may include working towards a shared vision and developing an early plan for implementation. For teams who feel ready to develop a formal strategic plan, consider NACCHO’s Strategic Planning Guide.

Look at the results of Q18-20 in your completed SPACECAT to understand and further develop your LHD’s capacity for shared planning and strategic plans.

Once you have collected information on your community, its needs, and work that is already been doing related to the intersection of suicide, overdose, and ACEs, draft a vision for how and what the community can do together to address the intersection. Begin by developing a shared vision, which lays the groundwork for goal setting, action planning, and in time, a more formal strategic plan.

Each partner, team member, and community participant will bring his/her own needs, priorities, and goals to the table. Everyone will have a unique “why” that explains their stake in the work, but there are likely to be areas of overlap. The process of developing a shared vision can lead to alignment or getting everyone on the same page and moving in the same direction. This can result in strengthened buy-in for future activities, a shared sense of responsibility and active engagement for new partners, reinvigorated relationships with current partners, new ideas for action, and activities that are better tailored to reach populations of focus.

When creating a shared vision, it is important to understand the group, including its goals, values, ideas, and challenges. There are many ways to approach developing a shared vision. The V2MOM approach encourages groups to consider and discuss:

  • Vision: what you want to achieve or accomplish; what is most important to you
  • Values: principles of beliefs that are important to you as you pursue the vision; guide everyday decisions
  • Methods: actions to achieve your vision or bring your vision to reality
  • Obstacles: what blocks progress or makes progress difficult
  • Measures: how you know when you’ve achieved success; measurable outcomes of your work

Similarly, Google’s Vision Framework emphasizes the importance of understanding why the team exists, what it is trying to achieve, and how it will get there.

    Other resources that can guide your development of a shared strategic vision are available:

        Everyone, regardless of their role in the LHD, can contribute to the development of a strategic vision or plan. The Roles in Strategic Planning Worksheet is one way to begin thinking intentionally about where each team member can contribute. This worksheet can be used at the beginning of the process and throughout to ensure that all levels of the LHD are being represented and their voices heard. Encourage staff at all levels to provide input, formally or informally, through focus groups, surveys, and discussions with LHD leadership. Recognize and celebrate the role that each level of staff contributes. For example, incorporate the important observations and feedback of frontline staff as they often have the most direct contact with those who are most impacted by programs. Develop the process and outputs such that managers and supervisors can easily communicate updates to their staff. Continuously strive to keep your teams connected to the vision by welcoming and including information that might change the LHD’s readiness, staff’s buy-in, or the ability to prioritize intersection work.

        Once the group has developed a shared vision, it will be time to begin the work. To maintain momentum, keep lines of communication open, and coordinate activities across teams and partners, consider developing a workgroup within the LHD who can manage this emerging area of work. This workgroup should include members from multiple departments who are (1) currently working on some of the activities identified in your crosswalk of other teams, (2) able to attend regularly scheduled meetings, and (3) committed to the shared vision of addressing the intersection of suicide, overdose, and ACEs. The workgroup can not only track community, LHD, and partner efforts but also seeks to understand how these efforts are being communicated, supported, and further developed. The workgroup may also play a role in seeking funding opportunities, developing partnerships, and informing the larger team of new data related to shared risk and protective factors.

        • A Sustainability Planning Guide for Healthy Communities (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)- A framework from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that outlines sustainability policy strategies and science-and-practice-based evidence in order to aid agencies in the development, implementation, and evaluation of their own sustainability plans.
        • Essentials for Childhood (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)- A toolkit about creating safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments for all children. Includes information about strategic planning for ACEs prevention programs.
        • Child Abuse Prevention and Child Welfare: Collaborating for Creative Solutions (FRIENDS National Resource Center for Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention)- A framework from FRIENDS National Resource Center for Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention that provides guidance on developing collaborations
        • Collaboration Toolkit (FRIENDS National Resource Center for Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention)- A toolkit from FRIENDS National Resource Center for Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention that provides tools and resources, categorized across ten elements.

        This page is part of the SPACECAT Toolkit. It was last updated on September 22, 2022. To report broken links, please email ivp@naccho.org.

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