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your challenges

Navigating the complexities of strategic planning can feel like wandering through a maze without a map. Is your organization:

Feeling stuck in the status quo?

"Despite our best intentions, we keep cycling through the same strategies and outcomes. We are struggling to break free from the status quo and truly innovate in our strategic planning."

Misaligned between vision and action?

 

"We have a clear vision of where we want to go, but translating that vision into actionable steps feels overwhelming. There is a disconnect between our aspirations and our ability to execute."

Daunted by operationalizing equity?

"We recognize the importance of centering equity in our work, but we are unsure how to operationalize it in our strategic planning. The process seems complex and challenging, and we're worried about getting it wrong."

It's time to break free from these challenges!

our solution

A Cohort-Based Approach to Strategic Planning

Introducing a dynamic, joyful, and effective way to create your organization's next strategic plan. Our cohort-based model is designed for up to 10 organizations to embark on this journey together. Led by our expert team, you’ll create your organization’s equity-centered strategic plan in parallel with your peers in the cohort, with lots of community-based learning and support along the way.

what you'll gain:

Unlock Innovative Strategies Through Peer Insights

You'll gain invaluable perspectives and feedback from a diverse group of peer organizations. This collaborative environment fosters innovation, allowing you to refine and elevate your strategic plan with insights you might not have discovered on your own.

Expert Guidance on Operationalizing Equity

You’ll benefit from direct access to a team of experts who know how to embed justice and equity practices within organizations. We’ll share our best resources to support you in centering equity at all stages of the strategic planning process.

Significant Cost Savings

Experience the comprehensive benefits of a strategic consultant at a fraction of the cost. We created our cohort model specifically to work with small to mid-size organizations like yours, offering the opportunity to develop a strong equity-centered strategic plan without the price tag of individual consultancy.

Strengthened Organizational Cohesion

Participating in our cohort helps bridge internal gaps within your organization. By working together on strategic planning in a structured, supportive environment, your team will emerge more aligned and unified in your mission and objectives.

Experience Dynamic and Joyful Learning

Embark on a strategic planning journey that's not only productive but also fun, creative, and exciting. Our sessions are far from mundane; they're dynamic and filled with energy and joy, ensuring that every meeting sparks inspiration and catalyzes an insightful experience for your team. Prepare to transform your strategic planning process into an engaging adventure that invigorates your organization at every step.

the journey

1

Assemble Your Organization's Working Group

Bring together a diversified team from your organization’s staff, leadership, and board to create a strategic plan working group. To help you get started, we’ll share our insider tips on crafting the ultimate lineup!

2

Attend Engaging Cohort Sessions

We’ll meet once a month for six months. These sessions are designed to help you craft your organization's strategic masterpiece. Together, we'll explore:

  • Mission, Vision & Values: Dive deep into the heart of your organization, crystallizing your core purpose, aspirational goals, and guiding principles.

  • Program Analysis: Conduct a thorough review of your current programs, identifying strengths, uncovering opportunities, and setting the stage for impactful innovation.

  • Goals: Sharpen your focus with strategic goal setting that aligns with your mission, propelling your organization towards measurable success and meaningful impact.

  • Telling Your Organization's Story: Capture your organizational narrative, the story that highlights your values, mission, and plan so that it resonates with varied audiences and grabs their attention.

  • Rollout & Implementation Planning: Equip yourself with a robust, actionable plan to bring your strategic vision to life.

3

Hold Flexible Committee Working Sessions

Between cohort sessions, your working group will tackle hands-on assignments. You decide when and how often you meet, ensuring your work sessions fit within your organizational rhythm.

4

Engage with Continuous Asynchronous Support

Stay connected with peers and our team for support throughout the program. We will regularly check in to provide guidance, help navigate challenges, and celebrate your milestones.

by the end of the program,
you will have created a
comprehensive equity-centered strategic plan, including:

  • A clear statement of your organization’s mission, vision, and values

  • An analysis of your programs in their present state

  • Clearly defined strategic goals, outcomes, tools, and actions

  • An engaging organizational story

  • A detailed implementation plan

bridging the gap

Equity is an all-of-us process. After leading countless strategic planning and organizational design projects, we’re offering our experience and expertise in this new equity-driven, community-centered model. We’re excited to have an opportunity to share the best of what we know at an accessible price point for small to mid-size organizations.

We understand that comprehensive, individualized strategic planning can be a significant investment, with bespoke engagements for larger organizations costing tens of thousands of dollars. That's precisely why we've designed this program—for smaller organizations aiming for impactful change but without the capacity for larger-scale investments.

Your cost for this six-month program is $10,000.

We hope you'll join us for this opportunity to engage with expert-level strategic planning at a fraction of the cost, setting the stage for powerful change in your organization and beyond.

We are a trio of accomplished practitioners with a combined 50+ years of experience coaching and facilitating inquiry-driven discovery processes. Whether we’re guiding a strategic planning process, facilitating a board retreat, or coaching a group of emerging executive leaders, at the heart of what we do is a deep interest in organizational transformation. We center equity, deep curiosity, and uncontainable joy in our work together.

Desireé Wilkins Finch

Desireé Wilkins Finch (she/her) was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. As a graduate of The Ohio State University, she earned a BA in Liberal Arts and Sciences, an MA in Relational Therapy with an emphasis in Leadership at Seattle University, and an MHS Certificate in EQi2.0 and EQ 360  in Emotional Intelligence. She firmly believes that we have all been tasked with caring for each other; we should open our hands to our brothers and sisters, those in need, and the poor.

As the owner of RiseLWP and founder of the Tacoma Black Fund, she creates an environment of belonging so leaders can examine their values, explore how those values motivate their behavior, and offer support as they find their willingness to transform.

Desireé is dedicated to helping executives and leaders transform as they access their strength, convert it into power, and transform to build stronger teams, lead with more tangible and impactful strategic plans, and bring renewed vibrancy and joy to their mission and deepen their impact. Her coaching centers on how leaders drive values, values drive behaviors, and behaviors drive a community.

Desireé is a member of The Milgard Women’s Initiative (MWI) advisory council at the UW Tacoma Milgard School of Business, community partner at the University of Puget Sound, coach for Leadership Tomorrow Class of 2023, and a former clinician at the University of WA in the department of public health.  In her spare time, she is a flautist and enjoys spending time with her family and traveling with her son. She is a graduate of Leadership Tomorrow (LT 20), American Leadership Forum (ALF XXVII), and 2021 Puget Sound Business Journal’s 40 under 40 recipient.

Jen Self, Ph.D., LICSW

Jen Self, Ph.D., LICSW (they/them) is an anti-racist white, queer, genderqueer graduate of and Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of Washington School of Social Work, and founder of the UW Q Center. Dr. Self is the CEO/Founder of Brick 13, a Critical Equity Educational Consulting and Coaching LLC.; they have been an antiracist equity educator for three decades and have worked across sectors, including corporate, government, and nonprofit. They are a licensed clinical social worker with a Ph.D. in social work and a concentration in critical race and critical queer feminist studies. They have completed >20 regional and national workshops and certifications on Justice, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (JEDI) topics. They continue their education as they believe unlearning is a lifelong process.

Liz Cruz

Liz Cruz (she/they) is the Founder & Principal of Liz Cruz Consulting. Prior to leading her practice, Liz spent over 10 years in the corporate space (retail and technology) as a coach, leadership development program leader, and organizational effectiveness consultant. They have facilitated leadership and team development work in corporate, nonprofit, and community spaces for over a decade. Liz is also an ICF-certified leadership coach with over 1000 hours of coaching experience; primary areas of focus in their coaching work are LGBTQIA+ leadership development, team effectiveness, and emotional intelligence.

Liz’s approach to this work is informed by her deeply held belief that each of us is inherently brilliant and that the best solutions to our leadership challenges are found in our deep knowledge of ourselves. She is an eternal optimist, a queer leadership fanatic, a frequent teller of not-that-funny jokes, a lifelong artist (current love: watercolor), relentlessly curious, a deep empath, and despite all outward appearances, definitely an introvert.

our team

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