Giving Compass’ Take:
• The leaders of the St. David’s Foundation explain how prudent planning and feedback helped guide the way forward their health-focused community strategy.
• What can other organizations learn from St. David’s practices? One big takeaway is the respect and engagement shows toward its operating partners.
Becky Pastner and William Buster are leaders at St. David’s Foundation, the largest health-focused funder in Central Texas. I worked closely with Becky, the chief impact and metrics officer, and William, the executive vice president of community investments, when St. David’s Foundation engaged FSG to develop a strategic planning process in 2016.
In designing your strategic planning effort, you were clear that investing time in engaging operations and program staff throughout the process was important. Do you think that has paid off and if so, how?
William Buster: There is a lot of enthusiasm across the organization about our new direction. During the strategic planning process, we held 2 cross-departmental workshops with our senior leadership, the community investments team, program staff, communications, human resources, evaluation, and IT teams.
What advice would you have for other organizations that are looking to evolve their grantmaking portfolio? What are you most excited about looking forward?
Change is hard. The shift can be challenging internally and creates uncertainty for grant partners. We’d encourage other organizations to be mindful of these uncertainties on the front end, and plan for it accordingly — being respectful that change doesn’t happen overnight. – William Buster
Read the full article about strategic planning by Lauren A. Smith from FSG.
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