Spring Conference Spotlight: A Feline Approach to Strategic Planning

What if cats ruled the world…or at least lead your organization’s strategic planning sessions?! With that spirit in mind, we hope you’ll join us for A Feline Approach to Strategic Planning, Jan F. Brazzell’s June 8 workshop at the virtual Spring Conference for Animal Welfare Advancement. Brazzell, who has advised more than 75 nonprofit organizations on everything from strategic planning to organizational development, will lead attendees as we explore why the planning process matters more than the plan itself. “You will come away with strategies for creating and implementing a plan that’s as exciting, agile, alert, and flexible as your favorite feline,” she says.  Here’s more of what to expect and what you can do to prep:

The Association: To get attendees psyched and prepared for your session, what can they think about or do beforehand? Anything to read, or anything to consider in regard to their organization? 

Jan F. Brazzell, PhD, ACFRE: Identify your organization’s key stakeholders (e.g. Board, staff, volunteers, donors, sponsors, adopters, local veterinary/animal rights organizations, vendors, etc.)—anyone  who has a vested interest in the strategic directions your organization might take. Find and review your organization’s current (or most recent) strategic plan. 

The Association: Based on what we’ll learn in your session, what’s one thing that attendees can start doing or planning the very next day?

Jan F. Brazzell, PhD, ACFRE: I hope you will assess the relevance of your organization’s current strategic plan. If it’s still relevant, you will be able to connect it more powerfully to your business plan. If your current strategic plan is no longer relevant (or doesn’t exist), you will be able to map out a strategic planning process that brings your key stakeholders together to affirm your mission, vision, and strategic directions moving forward. This process will result in a vibrant, new, 1- to 2-page strategic plan that’s clear enough to guide your business planning and flexible enough to adapt to unanticipated, emerging situations.

The Association: This year’s conference theme is inclusion–with a pretty broad definition in order to be, well, inclusive. What questions can we ask to help expand our thinking or programs to include ideas or practices we may not have considered before? 

Jan F. Brazzell, PhD, ACFRE: Who had voice in shaping your organization’s current (or most recent) strategic plan? Whose voice was missing from that process? How might you include a broader array of voices in your next strategic plan?

Dr. Brazzell also encourages all members of The Association who make strategic decisions at their animal welfare organizations to participate in the following 2-question survey. The findings will be shared with everyone, and discussed in her June 8 session.

Responses are due by May 14—but we’ll remind you again closer to the date.


Haven’t registered for the conference? Do it here!
For a complete listing of sessions and speakers, download the conference brochure.

Illustration: naobim from Pixabay 


The Association

The Association is the only international society of leaders actively leading and managing community animal shelters/animal control agencies.


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