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Strategic Planning

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Defining Disruptive Innovation
Advancement Weekly Article Disruptive innovation is a buzz phrase in management—but the lessons we’ve learned about it may not apply to every organization, write three business leaders.

3 Crisis Management Tips from Pilots
Advancement Weekly Article Professionals can keep their organizations aloft during a crisis with tips from pilots, according to a flight instructor.

4 Tricks to Vanquish Procrastination
Advancement Weekly Article The bustle of the holidays means the season for procrastination is upon us, writes a business professional.

The Return on Revelry
CURRENTS Article Improving events ROI requires frank questions, mindful deconstruction, and continual assessment. Be honest when considering the need for an event. When the turnout or energy level at an anniversary gala is too low, for instance, or a fundraising event doesn't raise enough funds, it's often because planners didn't carefully consider the occasion's intentions—or whether it should happen at all. Consider why you are doing an event and who the audience is. What do we want them to think or know? What do you want them to do?

Putting Success in Succession Planning
CURRENTS Article Michael Eicher, senior vice president of advancement at The Ohio State University, has a strong track record of cultivating advancement, fundraising, and communications vice presidents and vice chancellors. He talks to CURRENTS about succession planning.

A Categorical Decision
CURRENTS Article In 2010, the Indiana University Alumni Association launched a new era of inspired innovation in alumni relations by using typology to assess, organize, and improve its work.

Myths that Derail Strategic Planning
Advancement Weekly Article,  Article The strategic planning process should reveal which opportunities are worth an organization’s investment and which aren’t, writes a management specialist.

Outlook: Do More with Less
CURRENTS Article Too many development chiefs focus on mega-donors and neglect implementing operational efficiencies that can boost fundraising results.

Big Question
CURRENTS Article Single Tasking Day is Feb. 18. If you could cut through your institution's red tape and finish one major advancement job that day, what would it be?

The Do's and Don'ts of Strategic Planning
Article,  Community College News Article Community colleges need robust strategic plans to address future uncertainty, say CASE faculty members.

Build a Succession Plan
Advancement Weekly Article,  Article Advancement offices should formulate a proactive and long-term talent strategy for their mission-critical positions, says a development officer.

Strategic Plans
Sample Collection The Library maintains this collection of strategic plans for alumni relations, communications and marketing, and fundraising in educational institutions. Separate pages link to advancement-related plans from community colleges and plans from institutionally related foundations. The collection is available to all members.

Strategic Plans
Good Question I would like to receive samples of strategic plans. I would be most interested in URLs of plans presented online.

The Brain Trust
CURRENTS Article Historically, advancement services' responsibilities have been to keep donor and alumni records current, process gifts, and send out receipts. Advancement services has taken on more duties in recent years as institutions change the way they collect, analyze, report, and use data for strategic purposes.

Professing Pride
CURRENTS Article Canada's University of Windsor devises a handy way to make the university community aware of its strategic priorities and encourages members of the community to share why they're proud of the university and what it's done for them. As a result, the public affairs and communications office has a supply of examples that demonstrate the institution's strategic priorities put into practice and communicates them through every available outlet, building awareness and pride along the way.

Partners in Crisis
CURRENTS Article A consortium of Chicago area higher education institutions developed and signed a mutual aid agreement that is intended to provide support—such as access to facilities, equipment, and personnel including police, human resources, and communications staff—to member campuses in the initial hours of a crisis situation. The agreement has garnered approval from risk management experts, who tout the benefit of such cooperative emergency planning efforts.

Office Space: Strategic View
CURRENTS Article This article discusses who at an institution, depending on the campus, may be involved in devising social media strategy but makes it clear that partnerships across departments are essential. It also provides examples based on the experience of a few institutions and offers a sample social media brief that helped guide the author in discussions with colleagues who requested a separate social media presence for their group, office, or department.

Seamless Integration
CURRENTS Article Twenty years ago, alumni strategic plans were unusual, but they have slowly become much more mainstream. The next step in this organizational evolution is going on now: a strategic plan that aligns the alumni association's goals with the institution's goals.

Office Space: Inside the Box
CURRENTS Article Why are we always asked to think outside the box, when sometimes we need guidelines to help along the process?

Better Together
CURRENTS Article Assessments in higher education are common—exams, state board tests, surveys, and focus groups, among other instruments. However, Widener University's convergence of academic assessment, strategic planning, and reaccreditation—and how they all inform and direct fundraising and campaign planning—is unique.

Closing Remarks: Blue Sky Thinking
CURRENTS Article Fundraising campaigns conjure dreams of impressive new facilities, new educational attainments, and other lofty goals. Guilford President Kent John Chabotar says, by all means, consider high-reaching ideas and set ambitious goals--just ensure that they are supported by sound strategic planning. Chabotar shares some of Guilford's approaches leading to success.

Managers Portfolio: Love Thy Enemy
CURRENTS Article Strategic plans often are viewed as exercises that consume vast amounts of resources (especially time and staff), but they also can be useful tools for institutions—and for advancement operations. Begin to see them in a different light by overcoming some common misperceptions of what a strategic plan is, what it takes to create one, and how it can be used.

Broad Strokes, Fine Brush
CURRENTS Article Making the institution’s goals and priorities the advancement office’s goals and priorities is no easy task. This article, an adaptation of a May 2004 CASE Online Speaker Series presentation by Rensselaer’s vice president for institute advancement, emphasizes the importance of careful planning and comprehensive thinking in formulating the advancement office's role in ensuring an institution’s long-term success.

A Makeover Story
CURRENTS Article In this article, the second of a pair about strategic communications, the author candidly describes the transformation of her career as a communications professional. She starts by recounting the entry of the word “strategic” into the higher education lexicon and then chronicles how embracing the word has shaped her career.

Manager's Portfolio: Two Months to Think
CURRENTS Article A college vice president describes his two-month administrative leave, which contributed to significant changes in Bates College's alumni relations efforts.

Closing Remarks: A Bicycle Built for Two?
CURRENTS Article Strategic planners can learn from Integrated Marketing, but first we have to define our terms.

Vision of the Future
CURRENTS Article A participatory strategic planning process can enable an institution to start moving its integrated marketing efforts out of the communications arena and into the entire institution. The article describes nine steps: 1) State program objectives. 2) Select participants and leaders. 3) Compile background information. 4) Select task force topics. 5) Set up a Web site. 6) Train task force facilitators. 7) Plan a kickoff event. 8) Create the final report. 9) Implement the best ideas.

Closing Remarks: Out with the Old, In with the New
CURRENTS Article Williams proposes that it is time for institutions to abandon strategic planning and embrace the marketing movement. He maintains that campus strategic planning efforts have become ineffective because of fear of hard decisions, passive-aggressive behavior at the institutional level, fuzzy goals, and unrealistic objectives. By contrast, a marketing approach is integrative, grounded in reality, and constituency-oriented. It relies on surveys and perceptions, produces progress that is easy to measure, and pays attention to relationships.


The Library maintains a collection of strategic plans for advancement.

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