Building Strategic Thinking from the Ground Up

strategic visioning Mar 03, 2020





Several years ago, select directors of organizational development within the Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) attended The Grove’s Strategic Visioning workshop. These directors work for the national BGCA and support the independently operated local and regional clubs with organizational development and tools. This team interfaces with club boards and staff around national goal-setting and planning, among other things. After experimenting with the Strategic Visioning (SV) process and tools, these directors decided that the methodology could provide an accessible, trainable approach that could work in a wide variety of clubs across the U.S. It would also provide the consistency in strategic planning that the organization needed.

Last year, BGCA engaged The Grove in a train-the-trainer program with the objective of rolling out SV nationwide. The vision for the program is twofold—on the one hand, to enhance strategic thinking between board and staff at the local/regional level, and, on the other hand, to strengthen the national strategic thinking with on-the-ground knowledge coming from the clubs. Thus, the strategic direction of the national and local clubs will be more co-informed and collaborative.

Laurie Durnell, principal consultant for The Grove, has helped develop the train-the-trainer program for BGCA and is providing ongoing coaching. “Using the strategic-visioning templates provides a level of guidance and confidence for beginning facilitators and flexibility for more advanced facilitators. Both can support a strategic conversation that matches the needs and level of expertise for a wide range of audiences.”

Response from the field has been enthusiastic.


The Strategic Visioning process has given us the tools and methods to engage our Clubs where they are in their development, regardless of size, sophistication or design. The feedback we are receiving is incredible!

Jodi Millerbernd
Regional Vice President
Boys and Girls Clubs of America


What is Strategic Visioning and How Does It Work?

At the heart of the SV approach is a series of thoughtful conversations that bring key stakeholders into consensus about new directions. While preserving the best practices of traditional planning, SV adds the engagement, creativity and big-picture thinking that visual facilitation provides. The process is distinctive in using large visual templates, called Graphic Guides®, to support and capture conversations about an organization’s environment, current situation, vision of a desired future state and action plans for implementing a strategic vision.

SV is a flexible methodology with the choice of many visually supported activities to meet an organization’s unique needs. The following is a snapshot of the fundamental moves through the SV process.

















Learn about the tools and process mentioned above in The Grove’s public Strategic Visioning workshop, led by Laurie Durnell. We not only teach Strategic Visioning, but also facilitate SV sessions for clients. Contact us at [email protected] to discuss how we can tailor the Grove’s SV process to meet your organization’s specific needs.

For a more in-depth description of the Strategic Visioning process, please download our brochure.


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