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North Dakota Leadership Initiative for
Community Strategic Planning

In November 1998, a group of federal, state, and nonprofit agencies met to discuss how to assist North Dakota communities to identify and meet their needs, while also satisfying the planning and program requirements of various agencies. It was agreed by the group members that in order to assist communities, a single strategic planning should be created. This single strategic planning process will reduce the need for communities to complete a strategic plan for every agency requiring a plan for funding purposes.

To address the issue of a single strategic planning model for communities, the group realized that a cooperative effort would need to be conducted by agencies wishing to use the results of a completed community strategic plan. The group organized formally and calls itself the Leadership Initiative for Community Strategic Planning (LICSP). The planning process will also be able to serve those communities who have already started a strategic planning process.


The Strategic Planning Process is outlined in a Basic Steps manual (see below). The process starts with community leaders determining that they would like assistance to design their community's future. A leader from that community will contact the Division of Community Services, which is the Point of Contact (POC), or any one of the other participating agencies or entities, to be put in contact with the POC. The Division of Community Services will explain the process to the community. The community will then select a facilitator for the process. The community and facilitator will put together a core group of community residents and assign a coordinator to the process. The meeting portion of the process begins and is estimated to take approximately 4 - 6 months to complete. When necessary during this process, the facilitator will assemble a resource team to come out to the community and assist in the action planning phase. Once the action plans are completed and the community adopts the plan, selected persons will be in charge of assuring that specific actions are completed. The POC will contact the community every year for five years to find out what actions have been completed and if any additional assistance is needed. If a community chooses to do this process on its own, it can download the Strategic Planning Manual for Community Leaders below. If you are interested in learning how to facilitate this process you can also download the Strategic Planning Manual for Facilitators below.

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Basic Steps Manual

Strategic Planning Manual for Community Leaders
Leaders (220k)

Strategic Planning Manual for Facilitators
Facilitators (179k)

Power Point Presentation

Training Manual for Community Leaders

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