2018-04-12_15-09-18When CDL set out to articulate a new strategy for our organization, we called the activity “strategic visioning,” not “strategic planning.” While a subtle distinction, it was a deliberate attempt to differentiate what we were doing from more traditional strategy approaches. We were not going to create a voluminous 5 year plan with specific milestones and goals, only to be quickly outpaced by reality. Instead, spurred on by Michael Edson’s cautionary tales of strategy gone wrong, CDL created a visioning activity that acknowledged change as the one constant we can count on. In the words of the resulting vision:

“We recognize that we live at a time of rapid and accelerating change, which leads us to de-emphasize rigid long-term planning and emphasize more agile behaviors. Through our strategic vision process, we enhance CDL’s ability to track new developments, assimilate them into our thinking, and continually adapt our day-to-day actions to changing realities.”

While the future can’t be captured and tamed with milestones and goals, we still needed to put ourselves in relationship to what’s coming. We found a powerful way to do so by articulating a set of trends as a catalyst for our visioning exercise. The vision emerged as we collectively imagined CDL thriving in a future dominated by those trends. It grew roots as we connected core CDL strengths from our past and present to this future.

Waibel Concludes:

I am elated to be leading an organization that has contributed such tremendous value to the University of California over the last 20 years. Our new vision positions CDL to continue on that path, advancing the broader UC mission of teaching, research and public service. CDL has wholeheartedly committed itself to this new vision. In the spirit of embracing unending change, we’ve also wholeheartedly committed ourselves to adapting our plans, goals, and methods when there’s compelling evidence that they do not serve us well under circumstances we may not have foreseen. First and foremost, this vision is an invitation. Please join us. And please ask us to join you whenever we can advance library values and solutions together.