During the year the Council of NZCCSS has applied a sharp focus to developing strategic imperatives for 2015-2018.

This is the third cycle of strategy-setting in my time as the executive officer at NZCCSS, so I thought it would be helpful to reflect on an activity that isn’t just a paper exercise – but rather guides our work each and every day.

Each strategy coincides with changes that occur with each cycle of Government, the environment that creates and the influences this has on the social justice landscape for the people our members serve.

For this cycle it’s notable that our approach has been reframed, and we haven’t done that in a vacuum. We have weighed up members’ views on issues, on the strengths and weaknesses of NZCCSS and expectations.

The new strategy essentially captures our modes of responding to the environment we operate in; in ways that mutually fit with and support members.

We are a small organization and we have to be smart about what we do. We know the difference between trying to lead something on your own and being part of a larger whole in conjunction with others.

Strategic Plan headingsOur five imperatives are simple to remember: Hope, Positive Change, Lived Experience, Voice, Resilient.

In addition the text that details the strategy – reproduced in full in this issue of Kete Kupu – is less than 400 words. Every word counts, and provides the active vocabulary that helps us set the tone of our communications – from articulating issues to influential decision makers to preparing submissions.

Implicit with the voice that we exercise, is the emphasis we give to listening. When we’re seeking to be heard by those in power we can only do that job effectively if we remain absolutely grounded in the feedback loops we have in place, and the ‘little data’ about Lived Experience we can collect and deploy.

I believe our new strategy is one that has become less about structural imperatives than a few years ago, and that now drives more towards the shared values that ultimately help to empower Council and the NZCCSS Secretariat.

With this clear guidance we also have a clear responsibility to model the positive change needed to stay true to each imperative.

As we continue to implement these imperatives we will certainly be keeping Hope at the front of what we do, and carrying a message of Hope for a society that values human dignity and the common good.

Read the Strategic Plan document: [wpfilebase tag=file id=5778 tpl=’nzccss_pub_file’ /]