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Ohio Valley Residential Services

What our client has to say

Need:          Outside perspectives to help guide visioning and planning

Service:     Strategic Planning


Transition of staff leadership prompted OVRS to re-evaluate the organization’s vision and mission. As board member Judi Heile explained, “With a new Executive Director at the helm, it was a great opportunity to have an outside person come in and lead us through a very thoughtful visioning process. We took a look at things we hadn’t really looked at before and started to consider what’s around the corner and how we can start preparing to meet the needs of the future.”


Executive Director Jamie Steele appreciated the rigor and personalization that Smith Beers Yunker brought to the strategic planning process: “Jim really challenged us to think about where we want to go and what we want to do, but he did it in a very professional and respectful way. I think the experience will truly benefit our organization over the long term.”


“I believe Smith Beers Yunker is a very high quality agency. They do what they say they’re going to do. They also tailor their services to the needs of the specific organization. They didn’t try to give us some kind of pre-formulated experience; it was really an exercise that was tailored to us and our unique needs. They took us for who we are and where we’re at in order to help us get to where we want and need to be.”


Judi was generous in her praise regarding the manner in which the exercise was conducted. “Jim is just such a thoughtful facilitator. He listens so carefully and is so skillful at guiding the discussion in a positive and productive direction. And that’s so important when you’re seeking to build a shared vision that people are going to actually be invested in, and to put the work into reality.”


Judi felt SBY’s follow-through after the planning process was absolutely critical to realizing the goals of the strategic planning exercise. “If you had a strategic planning process, and then your facilitator walked out the door and you never heard from them again, it would be difficult to keep the momentum going,” she explained. “But it wasn’t like that with Jim. He has been there to motivate and encourage us after the fact.”


Jamie and Judi both agreed that bringing in an outside perspective was key. “Nonprofits, large and small, can get stuck and become stagnant and have a hard time coming up with new ideas that everyone can agree on. It really does take a third party to get through that,” said Jamie. “When you bring in an outside entity, you have the benefit of a fresh, unbiased perspective. And you clear away the clutter of any personal history or baggage within the organization.”