Your target is who you want to reach, influence or serve. Your choice of target may influence your strategy and goals.

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1 COMPONENTS OF THE PLANNING PROCESS: Your vision is your dream - how would you LIKE for things to be? What would the future look like if you could make it how you wanted it? A vision is typically very broad and idealistic; it is, after all, a dream of how things should be or could be in a perfect world. A mission is your purpose - what is your role in trying to create or move toward your vision? A mission statement is relatively general, describing what you would do to try to make your vision a reality. Objectives are general things that you d like to accomplish as part of your mission. (The terms goals and objectives are often used interchangeably, though sometimes goals are viewed as more specific and detailed.) Your target is who you want to reach, influence or serve. Your choice of target may influence your strategy and goals. Strategy is one s approach to achieving their mission, and is a plan of action based on a theory of change or one s idea as to what is best approach to accomplish one s goals. (For example, one s strategy in an international conflict may be to use diplomacy, based on a theory that this approach is more effective in the long-term, or it may be to use force, based on a theory that sometimes force is necessary to gain compliance.) Goals are specific, achievable and measurable things you d like to accomplish as part of your work toward your mission. Action plans are the very specific details of how you will reach your goals. Who will perform what task, how, and by when?

2 DEVELOPING A PERSONAL VISION STATEMENT A vision is a dream of how you d like things to be. Don t worry about whether it is realistic; let yourself imagine the possibilities. A vision statement doesn t necessarily have a set format. It can be written as a narrative paragraph, as a list, or even as a poem. It can be as short as a few sentences, but should be no longer than a few paragraphs. Sample personal vision (activity 1) My vision is to live in a world where: Conflict is resolved constructively, without violence People treat themselves and other living things with respect and dignity People take responsibility for their own actions Each individual tries to leave the world a better place DEVELOPING A PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT Having come up with a vision, your personal mission statement should reflect your role in making that vision happen, and be a general statement of how you would like to live your life (in essence, outlining what you believe your purpose is). It can also be written as a narrative paragraph, as a list, or in any other form that expresses what you want to say. Again, it can be as short as a few sentences, but should be no longer than a few paragraphs. Sample personal mission (activity 3) My mission: To promote constructive methods of conflict resolution by practicing them myself, teaching them to others, and encouraging use of constructive problem-solving at work and at home To promote positive social change, and to challenge injustice when I see it To do my part to treat others with respect, care for animals, preserve the environment, raise responsible children and be a good citizen To do work that helps others and strives to make my vision closer to reality

3 One suggestion for how to write a personal mission statement comes from Stephen Covey in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (1989, pp ): In your mind's eye, see yourself going to the funeral of a loved one. Picture yourself driving to the funeral parlor or chapel, parking the car, and getting out. As you walk inside the building, you notice the flowers, the soft organ music. You see the faces of friends and family you pass along the way. You feel the shared sorrow of losing, the joy of having known, that radiates from the hearts of the people there. As you walk down to the front of the room and look inside the casket, you suddenly come face to face with yourself. This is your funeral, three years from today. All these people have come to honor you, to express feelings of love and appreciation for your life. As you take a seat and wait for the services to begin, you look at the program in your hand. There are to be four speakers. The first is from your family, immediate and also extended-- children, brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces, aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents who have come from all over the country to attend. The second speaker is one of your friends, someone who can give a sense of what you were as a person. The third speaker is from your work or profession. And the fourth is from your church or some community organization where you've been involved in service. Now think deeply. What would you like each of these speakers to say about you and your life? What kind of husband, wife, father or mother would you like their words to reflect? What kind of son or daughter or cousin? What kind of friend? What kind of working associate? What character would you like them to have seen in you? What contributions, what achievements would you want them to remember? Look carefully at the people around you. What difference would you like to have made in their lives? A personal mission statement is like a personal constitution--fundamentally changeless. It outlines the basic principles under which we live, and which provide guidance in times of uncertainty and change. It reflects our purpose in life. Consider the roles you play and how your mission statements can provide guidance in each of those roles: spouse, parent, son/daughter, brother/sister, neighbor, employee, student, change agent, etc. Does your mission reflect a common purpose in each role that you play? There is no specific format that a personal mission statement need follow. Consider the following examples of personal mission statements:

4 "My mission is to live 'with integrity and make a difference in the lives of others.'" (Covey, p. 136) (The individual with this mission then went on to describe how he does this as a husband, father, son/brother, Christian, neighbor,, change agent and scholar.) Another example is prepared as a list of rules to live by (Covey, p.106): Succeed at home first. Seek and merit divine help. Never compromise with honesty. Remember the people involved. Hear both sides before judging. Obtain counsel of others. Defend those who are absent. Be sincere yet decisive. Develop one new proficiency a year. Plan tomorrow's work today. etc. And yet another (Covey, p. 107): I will seek to balance career and family as best I can since both are important to me. My home will be a place where I and my family, friends, and guests find joy, comfort, peace, and happiness. Still I will seek to create a clean and orderly environment, yet liveable and comfortable. I will exercise wisdom in what we choose to eat, read, see, and do at home. I especially want to teach my children to love, to learn, and to laugh--and to work and develop their unique talents. I value the rights, freedoms, and responsibilities of our demoncratic society. I will be a concerned and informed citizen, involved in the political process to ensure my voice is heard and my vote is counted. I will be a self-starting individual who exercises initiative in accomplishing my life's goals. I will act on situations and opportunities, rather than to be acted upon. etc.

5 An example of an organizational mission statement is that of Stephen Covey's business, the Covey Leadership Center. "Our mission is to empower people and organizations to significantly increase their performance capability in order to achieve worthwhile purposes through understanding and living principlecentered leadership." Once you have your mission, you can use it to then determine what you want to do to ensure that that mission is carried out, and prioritize the objectives that are most important to you.

6 GROUP STRATEGIC PLANNING A group that organizes to address a particular issue will develop their vision, mission, goals, strategy and action plans based on the issue that they seek to address. Hence, a group vision and mission, while still relatively general, typically has a narrower focus than a personal vision and mission. SAMPLE GROUP PLANNING PROCESS (for a group that has taken on the issue of hunger and homelessness) Vision: To live in a world where everyone s basic needs are met; where no one is hungry or homeless or alone. Mission: To help fight against the problems of hunger and homelessness through education, outreach and activities that address both the short- and long-term needs of those who are hungry or homeless. Issue: Hunger (do analysis to narrow down causes) Possible strategy: Start with a food drive and combine it with an awareness campaign to get people actively interested in working for building a community support network (or changes in foreign aid policies or building a community vegetable garden or setting up a cooperative market...). This will take care of both the short-term issue of getting food to those who need it, and set the stage to address the long-term causes of the problem so that some people won t have to go hungry in the future. Target: Local church groups or civic groups, or possibly schools - this should be a project drawing from a variety of organizations. Theory of change: This strategy is based on my theory that a simple one-time gesture is not enough to (a) fix the problem and (b) get people active and interested in the long-term. I also believe that people will get more involved if they know someone personally that is affected by the problem. And, once interested, they need to have an outlet for action. I also thing that those who are the beneficiaries of charity should have an outlet to give back something when they can, so they don t feel that they are being a burden (or don t feel that they are entitled to always be taken care of). I believe that efforts at a community level can be most effective, and can have the added benefit of rebuilding community ties and caring for our neighbors. I selected my target group because they re already inclined to volunteer, and by drawing from a variety of groups it truly becomes a community-wide project, where they can also bring others into the fold.

7 Plan: Based on my theory and strategy, I think the best way to help people and get them interested in the long term would be through an Adopt-a-family program where you can actually meet the people you re helping. These families would then work with their benefactors to build a neighbors-helping-neighbors program in the community. For those not interested in a long-term commitment, simply donating food or money would be acceptable (you don t want to turn down help). Goal (project): Establish an adopt-a-family program, spearheaded by a group that consists of members of various community, church, school and civic organizations.

8 SAMPLE GOALS AND ACTION PLANS Goals: Your goal or goals should be specific, achievable and measurable, describing what you want to accomplish. For instance, if your mission involved educating others about your issue in order to get them to change an attitude or behavior, your goals might be: Goal 1: To conduct a program to teach (number) people (if you have a specific target audience - such as children or college students, substitute that for the word "people") about (specific topic of program) by (date). Goal 2: Get (number) people to (describe an action you want them to take, such as joining an organization, signing a petition, writing letters to Congress, etc.) by (date). Remember to keep your vision and mission in mind when setting goals your goals should be a step toward accomplishing your mission. Action plans: For each goal, you should have an action plan. Your action plan describes what tasks need to be done, who will do them, and by when they will be accomplished. For example, for goal 1 above, your action plan might include: 1. Fred and Eliza will investigate what other groups working on this issue have done for educational programs, and will bring ideas back to the group by Friday, 10/22. A draft program will be put together at that time. (NOTE: Whenever there are existing groups that are working on the same issue that you are, it s VERY useful to investigate what they ve done, in order to learn from their experiences. This should be part of your project.) 2. Joe will contact (list of groups) about doing a presentation for their group by Monday, 10/ Once the group has decided on the content of the presentation, Mary and Sue will gather handouts and other presentation materials and present them to our group for discussion by Wednesday, 10/27...

9 And so on, until all tasks needed to complete the goal are complete. A final action step would be to get together after the goal is complete to review how successful the group was at meeting that goal (can you measure the impact you made?), and review what worked well and what didn t. You may also consider what would be logical future goals for a group working on this issue, based on your experiences.

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