Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Membership  |  Strategic Planning

Membership for New Start-Ups

1) How do I join SDeFoundation?

New members join online using the

A printable membership application " is also available.

Application and payment should be mailed to: 2478 W. Lake Ave, Glenview, IL 60026

2) How much does membership cost?

Members join SDeFoundation™ -- Standard membership ($200.00), Deluxe ($600.00), Premium ($1,200.00).
View Membership Benefits:

3) How long is my membership good for?

SDeFoundation™ membership is good for one year from the time the application is processed.

Strategic Planning

What is Strategic Planning?

Strategic planning is a process by which a plan is created to guide your business in the direction you desire. A Strategic Plan is like a blueprint to build a house, which provides details for constructing the building. Strategic planning can provide you with the roadmap of where your organization is (current state), where it wants to go (future state), how it will get there (strategies), and how you will know if it got there or not (measuring the goal to track progress). In essence, it provides a clear picture of who is going to do what, when, and how, in measurable ways, to move your organization toward where you want it to be.

What are the benefits of Strategic Planning?

The strategic planning process helps achieve heightened awareness of your organization's needs. A strategic plan allows you to anticipate and prepare for unexpected changes. This is the proactive approach, versus reacting with a crisis management mindset. A thoughtful Strategic Plan is developed, with the involvement of key stakeholders, as the final product.

What is included in Strategic Planning?

We specialize in assisting non-profit organizations to develop Strategic Plans. Our process includes the development & fine-tuning of the organization's: mission, vision, and value statements, environmental assessments, SMART goals, strategies to achieve the goals, project implementation plan, a message map for internal and external communications, and a budget to accomplish the strategic goals. A 10-15 page customized report is developed which the clients can share with their donors, sponsors, and other stakeholders.

Why involve external consultant to facilitate Strategic Planning?

Conducting strategic planning yourself can often result in being penny wise and pound foolish. Leaders and managers would know their business details but few may have required expertise to design and facilitate the planning process. Expert facilitators know how to generate positive group dynamics necessary to create a workable strategic plan. A professional facilitator, working with your internal resource persons, can go a long way towards saving time, effort and money by helping you achieve superior results quicker.

How much time will it take to complete the strategic planning process?

Strategic planning can be conducted in as little as four to eight hours, and can last as long as several weeks. The rapidity of completion will depend on the interaction and communication between the clients and SDeFoundation consultants.

SDeFoundation's typical strategic planning process is broken into the following three stages: (1) pre-work, (2) facilitation, and (3) post-work.

(1) Pre-work (6-hours): Facilitators and clients work together in conducting the following four activities: (a) SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, & Threats), (b) PEST Analysis (Political, Economic, Social, & Technological), (c) review of internal documents to finalize facilitation questions, and (d) customize Power Point presentations for use during facilitation.

(2) Facilitation (8-hours): This is the key component of the entire process of developing a Strategic Plan. Key stakeholders need to attend this session. Ourfacilitators understand very well that one-size-does-not-fit-all. Therefore, this segment is customized to fit the organization's specific needs.

(3) Post-work (20-hours): SDeFoundation researchers work with the facilitators and client's representatives to develop the final customized strategic plan. Facilitator conducts 4 one-hour quarterly review meetings to provide process for accountability and to track implementation progress, spread over one year.

Who should attend?

We recommend that the Board of Directors, CEO, Program Directors, funders, advisors, or other key stakeholders be involved in the strategic planning process. A typical group size is eight participants. However, it is ultimately decided by the clients depending on their needs.

What is the difference between Strategic Planning Clinic (Membership Included) and Strategic Planning Standalone?

The process of Strategic Planning remains the same for both membership included Strategic Planning Clinic and Strategic Planning Standalone.

Strategic Planning Clinic (Membership Included)
-Ideal for new start-ups
-Entrepreneurs who want to develop ideas or concepts into for-profit or nonprofit business
-Ideal for product/service development
-Pre-determined package price to cover our cost
-Small group, not more than 6 organizations, will participate in the Strategic Planning Clinic. There will be one facilitator for every two organizations (2:1 ratio) to make sure we deliver high quality services.
-Maximum of two members from each organization may participate
-Facilitators will facilitate each component of Strategic Planning followed by a break-out session to customize one component at a time for each organization.
-Exceptional Value!!

Strategic Planning Standalone
-Ideal for organization with large board (5-12 members)
-Established organizations with budget or grant allocated for organization development
-All board members and stakeholders should attend
-Price is established based on initial consultation
-Sponsorship is available

What is the cost?

Strategic Planning Clinic (Membership Included)
How can the SDeFoundation afford to charge such a low fee? It is because we have volunteers who donate their valuable expertise and time to help accomplish our charitable mission.

SDeFoundation™ understands that one-size-does-not-fit-all. Therefore, we designed the following two high quality-low cost innovative membership choices:
1 day Emersion to develop Strategic Plan (Included in Deluxe Membership for $600)
2 day Emersion to develop Strategic Plan (Included in Premium Membership for $1,200)

Strategic Planning Standalone
Our fee is, on average, $3,500 to cover our costs, which includes pre-work (6 hours), facilitation (8 hours), and post work (20 hours). However, we are aware that there might be several smaller non-profit organizations and businesses that may not be able to afford even this amount. As such, the SDeFoundation is in a position to offer 25%-75% sponsorship for qualified nonprofit organizations. In this way, your organization can avail of our services even it is not in a financial position to pay our nominal fee. Let us know and we will work with you in confidence to arrive at a workable arrangement.