Category Archives: Vision

RCVO Connections

The RCVO’s spring issue is out, which features an article I wrote on why strategic planning goes wrong. Also a good piece about mergers, some learning opportunities to look at, a few web picks. You can read my article here on my blog or download the newsletter (below)

Click HERE for the PDF of the newsletter.

Looking into the future

No one has a crystal ball that can predict definitively what the future will look like but there is a fair amount of forecasting that can be done that is based on demography. We know that the birthrate can help planners understand what the demand for schools and teachers will be in the future. It’s really a matter of math plus factoring in aging infrastructure that can help determine just how many schools will need to be built or phased out in the future.

Demographic projections are fairly reliable, especially with respect to population growth and make up. For example, we know that birth rate factored with death rate tells us a lot abot natural growth of an existing population. Factor in immigration policy and historic patterns of in- or out-migration with respect to a community and you can do a pretty good job of seeing the future, at least within the context of scenarios.

The data is there. One has to wonder if anyone is actually looking at it and casting out long term for the implications with respect to the economy, services to people, and how things will shift as the population grows and changes in terms of characteristics.

Stats Can has done some projections to 2031 and they are rather telling in terms of what the make up of Canada will be 20 years out. We know that is the year when the last wave of returing boomers will take effect. Given that Generation Y is a smaller population and the birth rate will be quite low for years to come, the workforce will be shrinking. We also know that our population growth will behighly dependent on international immigration.Unless policy changes dramatically we will see between 200,000 and 275,000 international immigrants coming to Canada each year for the next 20 years.

This will increase the multicultural flavor of our society, impact demands for services, and influence the nature of civic involvement, given the differences among cultures and how they see the expression of citizenship. Based on Stats Can info, I estimate between 350,000 and 400,000 new immigrants will make their home in Alberta in the next 20 years – most of these in our two major cities. Continue reading Looking into the future

About Visioning

This is a second posting in the series about Mission, Visioning and Values. See our first posting on “Mission” here.

Vision. Without it, we bump into things; we stumble and fall and ultimately can’t be certain if where we end up is where we want to be.

It’s a powerful and sometimes provocative word. It has numerous meanings. Being able to see what is before you AND being able to conjure up an image of the future are among the definitions or connotations of “vision.”

Picturing your future reality
From an organizational perspective, a vision statement is about picturing a future reality based on your mission statement. In other words, it is about what your purpose (i.e. mission) has accomplished five years or so down the road. In a sense, mission frames your work now to achieve your desired future.

Some are wary of visioning
Some people are wary of vision statements because they fear either that they will be little more than fantasy that no one really pays attention to or create unrealistic objectives that prime the organization for failure. It is easier and safer just to say what your purpose is than it is to announce what you will accomplish five years hence. 
Continue reading About Visioning