Strategic Plan Step 3: Where Are We Going?

Having reviewed your current situation and the challenges and changes which will affect your future development, the next stage in strategic planning is to come to a common agreement regarding what the future should look like.

To answer this question you will need to clarify:

  • your priorities for the next 3 to 5 years;

  • your strategic aims (long-term goals); and

  • how these will help achieve your mission.

Your priorities for the coming period 

Identify and agree your main priorities (e.g. services and key areas of work) for the period of the strategic plan (usually 3 or 5 years).  These priority areas should emerge from your SWOT analysis of your internal and external environment and their affect on your organisation's future.

Strategic Aims

Identify and write strategic aims (goals) for the organisation.  Strategic aims are broad statements of what the organisation hopes to achieve.

They should:

  • help achieve your mission;
  • be limited in numbers (i.e. 4 to 10);
  • show clear direction; and
  • be measurable.

View Worksheet: Priorities and Strategic Aims

View Worksheet: Developing Strategic Objectives

View Example strategic aims

For further information on strategic planning and the other stages in the process, click on the links below:

What is strategic planning?

Step 1:  Who should be involved?

Step 2: Where are we now?

Step 4:  How will we get there?

Step 5:  Writing your plan

Step 6:  Monitor and review