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Just do it?

One of the most popular tweets at the RMIT Global Shifts social enterprise conference in Melbourne last December was along the lines of “the best way to start a social enterprise is to just go and do it”.

There is a lot to be said for ‘just doing it’. Social entrepreneurs by nature are people who have a big idea, take a risk and don’t give up. But ‘just doing it’ without appropriate planning and strategy is a dangerous approach. Read more

Mind enemas and strategic planning

The good apostle Paul of New Testament fame wrote something along the lines of ‘empty yourselves of all the things that make for bad stuff’. Well maybe not exactly that, but people have been misquoting him for centuries.

He also said women should remain silent in ‘church’. And astonishingly some people still take this advice seriously!

But back to the ‘empty yourself’ advice.  What does that have to do with strategic planning?

What would it mean for a strategic planning process if it began with something akin to a ‘mind enema’? An emptying of all the noise and clutter, the chatter and unconscious yet chosen meanings, the assumptions and presuppositions, from the deepest parts of the mind? Read more

Is strategic planning a moral imperative for not-for-profits?

Organisations can act without morals or ethics. The past several years have exposed corporate disgrace in many places. For-profit greed, hubris and narcissistic power has led to crisis after crisis (see John Harris’s article ‘politics and corporate disgrace’ in The Guardian Weekly). But one could enquire why we would expect anything else? For-profits seek profit. But what about our expectations of not-for-profits? Read more

How can we use the future to plan (part 2)?

When an executive team develops a strategic plan, how is it that they know whether the direction they chose was the ‘right’ or ‘best’ one? What options had they considered? What assumptions did they make? What did they ignore (consciously or otherwise)? Strategic foresight helps answer those questions, and demands that people are clear about the future they want to create. This post follows on from part one. Read more