Leadership Link July 3, 2017

Darin Preis

My Friday last week got a bit squeezed and I missed the opportunity to send out my Leadership Link. Today is pretty quiet around the office and I thought I'd catch up.

I had the pleasure of attending a retirement reception on Friday for the Executive Director at Missouri Valley Community Action Agency. Pam LaFrenz has been the ED there for the last nine years and was the Head Start Director there for twenty-five years before that. I consider Pam a close friend and it was nice to reflect on our service together. She is the kind of person who cuts straight to the point and was eager to point out to me that she won't miss the BS of her job, but will miss the people and the work! I've got another good twenty years to go so I try not to dwell on the BS too much. ;) Instead, it is easy to enjoy working with all of you and keep my attention focused on the great work we're doing in Central Missouri.

Speaking of great work . . . about thirty of you attended the first strategic planning session last Thursday. We reviewed our values, mission, and vision statements and the "hedgehog concept" I described to you last week. We also spent time discussing the progress we've made on our current strategic plan and the five strategic commitments we have in place:

  • Engage the community to assure that all people have their basic needs met.
  • Enhance community capacity to ensure all individuals have lifelong learning opportunities.
  • Build community capacity to enhance economic and community assets.
  • Build relationships across class and race lines.
  • Central Missouri Community Action is an agency of excellence.

Next we conducted a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats), reviewed the agency Performance Standards and the Standards of Excellence. We also reviewed the ROMA NG (Results Oriented Management and Accountability - Next Generation) structure for measuring the outcomes of our work agency wide. In our last segment we reflected on the Community Assessment that was just recently completed and approved by the board. The community assessment highlights needs categorized by Family Needs, Community Needs, and Agency needs and very broadly shine a light on the following:

Family Needs

  • Transportation Resources
  • Affordable/Accessible Health Care
  • Higher Wages
Community Needs
  • Transportation Resources
  • Accessible, affordable, safe child care
  • Housing
Agency Needs
  • Comprehensive, high-quality, concentrated efforts to serve families
  • Systematic evaluations of programs and services
  • Diversified funding

The assessment contains a great deal of detail and additional needs in the full report but this gives us some broad direction for moving forward. This message is already getting long though, so I'm going to cut it off here.

Many of you are enjoying an extra day off before the 4th of July but I'm glad to see so many of you keeping the doors open today to make sure that we are available to help those in need today. The 4th of July is a great time for picnics, summertime fun, and fireworks, but don't ever forget that this party is to celebrate the greatness of our country and the promise of our potential. Let's all keep looking for our opportunities to expand that potential.

Happy 4th of July!