Strategic Planning

While many charities approach Bicoy Philanthropic Advisors with a goal of raising more money, they often overlook the reality that fundraising needs to be integrated into the larger activities of the organization. Securing additional gifts certainly requires training and skills, but no amount of fundraising savvy will help an organization that fundamentally does not know where it’s going. Ultimately, a strong and clearly articulated strategic direction is required to instill confidence in its current and future donors.

That’s why every fundraising plan needs to begin with thoughtful strategic planning.

At its best, strategic planning is an incredibly powerful capacity building tool. Yet to plan properly, the work must be approached with two very different mindsets at the same time. Good planning operates at the nexus of the imaginative and the pragmatic. The planning team has to be creative enough to dream of a new future yet practical enough to define a specific action plan to bring that dream into reality. That can be hard to achieve. However, when done properly, the planning not only lays out a workplan for the years ahead, the process itself inspires everyone to join in and help carry the load.

As facilitator of the process, it’s the role of Bicoy Philanthropic Advisors to create the conditions for these sometimes opposing forces – the imaginative and the pragmatic – to co-exist in the room. Bret helps create a space where the planning team’s collective creativity can thrive within the context of what is realistic and achievable. Bret’s responsibility is not only to help you develop a roadmap to a new future, it’s also to inspire everyone to want to undertake that journey together.

It should be noted that Bret’s approach to strategic planning requires Bicoy Philanthropic Advisors to be more than just a facilitator of a process. He is also your counsel, constantly challenging the planning team to explore ways to increase your capacity as an organization. That perspective is informed by more than 25 years of philanthropic experience.

As a fundraiser, Bret has led organizations that have secured more than $250 million in current and future estate gifts. As a grantmaker, he has been involved with the distribution of more than $60 million to non-profits. As a foundation executive, Bret helped create countless community collaboratives and launched numerous new organizations.

Let’s be honest, this work is not exactly rocket science. Rather, it’s just that you’re attempting to map out a new path through a forest that is a little unfamiliar to you – but Bret has hiked these woods before. His lifetime of experience in the charitable world is actively brought into the room throughout the planning process.

Please note that to avoid any conflicts of interest with Bret Bicoy’s formal role as President & CEO of the Door County Community Foundation, Bicoy Philanthropic Advisors does not contract with organizations based in Door County, Wisconsin or those that receive financial support from the Community Foundation.

If you need assistance in crafting your next strategic plan, contact Bret Bicoy at or call ‪(920) 288-2442‬.

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