According to research done by the Harvard Business Journal, 85 percent of executive leadership teams spend less than one hour per month discussing strategy, 50 percent spend no time at all. Not a great indicator of organizational success. Recognizing the need for a cohesive plan for the future, the City of Richfield is taking a different tack by creating its own strategic plan.
The city’s strategic plan identifies goals for the organization internally, and the city as a whole. With population demographics changing, recent elected official turnover and new additions to the city’s leadership team, a unified approach to decision making and resource allocation is crucial. The Strategic Plan is a road map that will guide city leaders for the next 3-5 years.
How did we get here?
The strategic planning process began with a meeting of the consultant and the Richfield senior staff on October 4, 2021. The meeting included a review of strategic planning principles, a discussion of organizational value proposition, the status of vision and mission statements, a tutorial on preparing an environmental scan and discussion on community outreach.
Next, staff preformed an examination of the operating environment, consisting of an environmental scan, a community survey, with more than than 600 Richfield residents and other city stakeholders respondents, eight focus groups (with over 70 participants), City Council interviews, and a SWOT analysis. Please view a summary of the findings below.
The strategic planning continued with two facilitated leadership sessions focused on effective governance on November 5, 2021, and February 10, 2022. The leadership group included the Mayor, City Council, and senior management team. During the two sessions the group discussed roles and responsibilities, governance best practice, teamwork, decision-making, style differences and conflict resolution.
On March 23 - 24, 2022, the City’s leadership team held a two days of strategic planning sessions. They developed a set of priorities (listed above), key outcomes, and performance targets.
- Mission, vision and core values
- Strategic planning retreat (Day 1)
- Strategic planning retreat (Day 2)
Based upon the five priorities identified, the City’s management team met on April 28, 2022, to create a set of strategic initiatives and develop detailed action plans.
Past strategic planning successes in Richfield
Where the 2023 Richfield Strategic Plan may be the first formal attempt to create an organization-wide roadmap, individual city departments have been relying on their own decision-making plans, in some cases, for decades. The Community Development Department has led the city’s Comprehensive Planning process since the 1960s. The Comprehensive Plan is similar to a strategic plan in that it gathers data and public input, sets goals and develops a plan to meet those goals.
Much like the Comprehensive Plan, which guides Richfield’s development efforts, the strategic plan brings residents and policy makers together on a collective vision for the services the city offers.