Strategic Planning at NACE International: Sixth in a Series

In a conversation between Alice and the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland, Alice extols, “If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there.” We have indicated many times that strategic planning provides a roadmap for taking us from a well-defined present state to a compelling and significantly different future state. But first, we must know where we want to go. In last month’s edition of MP, we established the first element of our destination.

Our Vision

NACE International is a diverse, global community of professionals who are passionately committed to providing society with comprehensive solutions to protect our assets today and in the future, rewarding all involved with fulfilling lifelong careers.

Our vision is a timeless statement, not subject to frequent revision. It represents the proverbial “carrot on a stick” hung in front of a donkey. We are forever aspiring to attain our vision, but can never fully realize it. It does however, provide directional context and help outline the destination we seek. After all, if we don’t know where we’re going, we might not get there!

The second element of the future state involves creation of a more definitive description of our destination. Our overarching goals create a specific, measurable, and attainable verbal picture of what our association will look like by October 2019.

NACE International:

Capitalizes on the IMPACT Study and other institutional knowledge to:

• Frame regulatory policy and business practices; and

• Develop programs focusing on corrosion management.

Creates value for our customers and members by engaging them in:

• Development and delivery of locally relevant programs, products and services;

• Volunteer opportunities and experiences that are meaningful to the member, resulting in increased member participation and customer satisfaction.

Establishes and maintains a systematic process to ensure all products and services are:

• Developed rapidly;

• Targeted to create diversified revenue streams;

• Market value priced;

• Locally relevant;

• Multi-purpose; and

• Consistent in content and message.

The description of our future state has two components. We intentionally move from an aspirational, timeless vision statement, to specific and measurable overarching goals that we fully intend to achieve in three years. Completion of these overarching goals moves us toward our vision. They paint a very clear picture of our desired destination. We know where we are going as an association, and are committed to getting there. So much so that the goals are written in the present tense, as if we’ve already achieved them. But of course, we haven’t.

Our work in strategic planning thus far has all been conducted with a singular outcome in mind; to create a shared picture of where we want to go. We want to start our journey with a clear picture of the destination in mind. The next step is to create the roadmap for taking us from where we are now (our present state) to our desired destination (our future state). In our model at NACE International, we call this the plan for success. The plan for success will be introduced next month.

Note: This article is maintained as part of an ongoing series of posts on the NACE web site.

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