Understanding your Organization’s Mission, Vision, and Values

Strategy is a loaded concept, which suggests profit maximization, cost-cutting and slick marketing – questions that may seem far from the relevant to non-profit organizations. Such an understanding is underbuilt by the large number of management books and newspapers that write about for-profit business strategy. The starting point of this course, however, is that strategy – correctly understood –simply is a way of accomplishing a desired outcome and strategic analysis is a tool for a structured analysis of the matching of where you want to go with what possibilities you have to reach. As such, strategy and strategic analysis is relevant to most organizations.

In this course we draw on the extensive knowledge there is on strategy and strategic analysis, but we put it to use in the context of non-profit organizations. While some of the concepts are readily transferable from a for-profit to a non-profit context, some require more care and afterthought to be translated in a useful manner.



Articulate and/or critiqued your organization’s mission, vision, values and strategy (and demonstrated you understand the differences among these terms)

Conduct stakeholder analyses;

Analyze your organization’s external environments, including assessing possible consequences of current trends in the environment;

Perform internal analyses of your organization, focusing on resources and capabilities; and

Made well-reasoned, actionable recommendations, informed by your analyses.

In order to successfully achieve these goals, you must:

Learn the vocabulary and frameworks of strategic analysis and understand how these can be useful to a variety of organizations;

Develop a strategic perspective in viewing and managing organizational work to meet the needs of multiple stakeholders; and

Demonstrate critical thinking skills and produce effective oral and written communications.