We have defined strategic planning as a process that provides a roadmap for taking our association from a well-defined present state, to a compelling and significantly different future state.
As indicated previously, our Board of Directors is comprised of four activity committee directors, eight global area directors, four executive officers, the presidents of NACE International Institute (NII) and NACE Foundation, and our CEO. That’s a very diverse group designed to be representative of all aspects of our association. The board started to establish a collective understanding of the present state of NACE International by formulating a formal core ideology. In the past three issues of MP, we have outlined:
• Our core purpose—establishing why we exist in the marketplace; our noble cause.
• Our cultural beliefs and core values—outlining how we are supposed to behave.
• Our mission—describing what it is we do to fulfill our core purpose.
With a commitment to our core ideology behind us, our strategic planning efforts shifted toward survey input and analytical data that helped create a picture of the current state of health of our association. Specific consideration was given to:
The status of current/ongoing key strategic initiatives
An assessment of key performance indicators for each area of operation (i.e., membership, education, conferences, technical activities, publications, certifications, and work of the Foundation)
Current and projected operating and financial data
Results of an international survey of member engagement (called the Global Engagement Index) in which NACE members participated
Results of a survey of board members addressing their perspective on each respective area of operation (i.e., four activity committees, eight global areas, the NII, and the Foundation)
After detailed presentations addressing each element above, board members were divided into four teams, and each was tasked with establishing the top strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats for NACE. This involved process allowed our very diverse group to have a singular, collective understanding of the present state health of NACE. With this as our framework, we were then able to explore our future state. The first step was to paint a verbal picture of what is it we want to become. In strategic planning jargon, this is referred to as a vision statement.
A vision is supposed to be an inspirational statement that is clear, concise, and compelling. It should convey our aspirations for the future to our members, associates, and staff.
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 life-long careers.
We believe the board met its charge. That is, our vision is clear, concise, and compelling. The word choice was deliberate. We hope you share this vision of our future, and find it inspirational—motivating us to be engaged—and aspirational—propelling us toward our lofty goals.
Note: This article is maintained as part of an ongoing series of posts on the NACE web site.