Master Planning

Comprehensive Strategic Planning

Master planning is an all-inclusive process through which an integrated strategic future is drafted, tested, and refined.  This incorporates:

  • Mission and Identity;
  • Program and Marketing;
  • Organizational Capacity, which involves administration, resource development and governance;
  • Site Design, Features, and Facilities.

Master Planning is often the process considered when a site is ready for a long range site and facility plan.  Since it is critical that all aspects of your organization move forward together, it’s important that site planning not be undertaken without also preparing for growth and change in the other aspects of your organization.

We use a 4-stage process for Master Planning.  Each stage includes a retreat with a planning team and the development of materials designed to reflect deeply on the past, thoroughly review the current operation, and prayerfully consider the future options for the ministry.

Discovery and Analysis

This stage grounds the process in the mission, vision, and values of the organization.

An initial planning retreat forms the group into a working team, reviews the process, and grounds the work of the team in prayer, Scripture, and mission.

This stage takes into consideration the perspectives of current participants in the ministry, staff, donors, volunteers, and other leaders.

We complete statistical, trend and GIS (Geographical Information Systems) analysis of guest and camper data and financial information.  Such analyses generally include the comparison of camper and guest data with demographic (census) data and can include additional data sets from your organization.

Review and Focus

 The second phase of planning refines and focuses the critical questions regarding the ministry.

The second planning team retreat defines the critical issues, which include the pivotal questions, challenges, and opportunities for the future of the ministry. Critical issues are often in the areas of new or expanded programs, essential marketing initiatives, long term viability, strategic alignment of resources, staffing patterns, appropriate forms of governance, and the construction or renovation of facilities. These represent both the matters which must be resolved as the ministry moves forward, and reflect the areas of potential expansion or redirection in programs and services.

Preliminary Concepts

At the third planning team retreat, proposed concepts for the preferred future of the ministry are presented, discussed, and refined. These include plans for:

  • Mission and Identity – what is the purpose of the ministry and what is the nature of the faith community that gives the camp/retreat center its unique character and causes it to thrive?
  • Program – what are the principal experiences and services that will accomplish the mission of the ministry? This includes programs and events which are sponsored by the ministry, groups that are hosted, and partnerships in ministry.
  • Marketing and Development – which strategies and initiatives will most likely drive a fiscally sound and missionally viable future? What are the particular goals for participation that will fulfill the mission and provide the necessary revenue?
  • Organizational Capacity, including governance, staffing, and finances – what are the structures, systems, and resources that will be needed to insure fiscal viability, and that can guide and shepherd the proposed vision? Particular attention is paid to organizational structures that will strengthen the ministry, and increase the likelihood of viability.
  • Site and Facilities – this includes the design of base and development maps, and concepts for proposed new structures and significant renovations or improvements.

Final Plan

At the concluding planning team working retreat, detailed plans are finalized, including specific implementation milestones and time-lines. Projects are both prioritized and sequenced.  Special attention is paid to project dependencies, in which one component of the plan may be contingent, fully or in part, upon another element of the plan.

Scenarios which may have a bearing upon the completion of the plan are considered. Plans are generally developed in 3 – 5 year windows, with the greatest specificity in the near future regarding program, marketing, funding, staffing, governance, and facilities.

The Final Report is prepared as an electronic draft for review by members of the planning team, edited, and then produced as a printed and bound report. Additional materials are prepared as determined by the content of the plan and the process for sharing the plan.