Best Practices For Local Government Strategic Planning

Local governments need a straightforward and effective strategic planning process to make the best decisions for their community. Such a process is necessary for decision-makers to find themselves working reactively instead of proactively, and significant opportunities may be missed.

Todd Leopold

In this article we will discuss some critical components of an effective local government strategic planning process. We will also provide tips for getting started and staying on track.

Define The Community You Are Serving

When it comes to local government strategic planning, one of the most critical considerations is defining the community that you are serving and its needs. This process can be complex, as assemblies can comprise people with various backgrounds, interests, and needs. However, taking the time to understand your community truly is essential for developing an effective strategic plan.

One way to do this is to conduct surveys and interviews with community members. Another option is to collaborate with local organizations that serve the community. By taking the time to understand the community that you are doing, you can develop a strategic plan that meets its unique needs.

Establish Clear Goals And Objectives For Your Organization

It is generally agreed that government strategic planning is a good thing. After all, how can an organization hope to achieve its objectives if it does not have a clear sense of what those objectives are? However, establishing clear goals and objectives can take time and effort.

What are our goals? What can we hope to achieve? How will we know if we have succeeded? These are tough questions. By establishing goals and objectives, you can ensure your organization is on the right track.

Create A Plan That Is Responsive To The Needs Of Your Community

Government strategic planning is a process that can help you create a plan that is responsive to the needs of your community. The process begins with identifying the goals that you want to achieve and then developing strategies to reach those goals.

You will also need to consider the resources that you have available and identify any gaps that need to be addressed. Once you have developed your plan, you will need to implement it and evaluate its effectiveness. Government strategic planning can be a valuable tool for any community leaders who want to create a plan that meets the needs of their constituents.

Involve Your Community In The Planning Process

As any experienced planner knows, successful community involvement requires more than simply holding a few public meetings. To truly engage the community, planners need to take a proactive approach and provide opportunities for residents to participate in the planning process throughout the entire project. One way to do this is to set up an online forum where residents can post their ideas and provide feedback on the project.

Another way to involve the community is to hold regular meetings at different times and locations to make it easy for people with different schedules to attend. By taking a comprehensive approach to community involvement, planners can ensure that all voices are heard and that the final plan reflects the needs and desires of the community.

Implement Your Plan Effectively And Track Progress Over Time

A well-crafted plan is only as good as its implementation. Once the objectives and initiatives have been finalized, it is critical to developing a clear and concise plan for how they will be achieved. This plan should consider the resources available, the timeline for each goal, and who will be responsible for each task.

Additionally, it is crucial to building mechanisms for tracking progress and making adjustments as needed. By taking a thoughtful and structured approach to implementation, government agencies can ensure that their strategic plans are executed effectively, and that results are achieved.

Evaluate Your Plan Regularly And Make Necessary Adjustments

No matter how well you plan, unforeseen obstacles and challenges will always exist. That’s why it’s essential to evaluate your plan and make necessary adjustments regularly. Doing so can ensure that you are on track to achieve your goals. There are several factors that you should take into account when evaluating your plan. First, consider whether you are still committed to your set initial goals. It’s easy to become discouraged and lose sight of your goals when things get tough. If you find yourself in this situation, it may be time to reevaluate your goals and see if they are still realistic.

Second, assess your progress toward your goals. If you need to see results, it may be time to change your approach. Finally, take a look at the resources you have available and make sure they are still adequate. If your circumstances have changed, adjust your budget or find new funding sources. By regularly evaluating your plan, you can ensure you are on track to achieve goals.


Community planning is an essential part of creating a thriving community organization. By taking the time to define your community and its needs, establish clear goals and objectives, create a responsive plan, involve your community in the planning process, and implement your strategy effectively, you can help ensure the success of your organization. Remember to evaluate your plan regularly and make necessary adjustments to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of your community. What have been some of the challenges you have faced while trying to enact change in your community?

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