Strategic Visioning Update
December 21, 2021
Strategic Visioning November Meeting Summary
On November 17, 2021, the Strategic Visioning Committee held its third quarterly meeting since the approval of the Strategic Plan in April. The purpose of the quarterly meetings is to hear from the Strategic Initiative leads, gauge progress toward our strategic goals, and set additional goals for the next quarter. We were thrilled to see that the six initiatives completed almost 75% of their goals from the first quarter. We took time to talk about the successes to date, along with some of the challenges. The overwhelming feedback was that the initiatives continue to bring our stakeholders together, that our energy and cooperation is at an all-time high, and that we are fully committed to making this organization better. Some challenges included ensuring that the intensity of our work pace is sustainable, the need for clear communication to avoid duplication of efforts, and the need for refinement in our goal setting, and establishment of a clear roadmap and timeline. Overall, things are working and progress is happening! It is exciting to see this evolution. We are STRONGER TOGETHER!
A brief summary of each initiative’s successes and future goals is provided below to ensure full transparency and keep everyone fully informed of the progress. The full meeting minutes can be found here. The formal Strategic Plan and related documents have been updated with the revised mission statement approved by the Board of Governors at their October meeting. Links to all the quarterly meeting materials and 90-day deliverables are available on the Strategic Visioning Implementation Updates page on The Arc New York website. We welcome you to review these documents, which contain many more details on the progress and process of our Strategic Plan. The previous commitments and the overall goals of each initiative can be found there as well.
Next Steps
Each group continues to work diligently to achieve their overall objectives as well as shorter-term deliverables. We held a work session on November 30 with Gregory North of Globe North Consultants, LLC, who has been retained to assist the initiative workgroups with managing change, engaging stakeholders, and ensuring each team has a clearly defined plan with timeframes to meet their objectives. Gregory will be scheduling individual meetings with every workgroup to further assist them in ensuring a clear roadmap with deliverables that are best aligned to meet those goals.
Although the pace of our surveys has decreased slightly, we do continue to collect necessary information to inform our workgroups. The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion survey will go out to Chapter staff at all levels in January. A toolkit is being provided to support participation in this important survey.
Initiative Summaries
To achieve our mission, we need an engaged workforce committed to working with us, learning with us, and growing with us professionally and personally. Unfortunately, we have experienced years of struggles with attracting and retaining staff at various positions. We have been able to manage, but as the staffing crisis continues to escalate, we are running out of viable options. We recognize the need for an immediate solution and are taking decisive and urgent action on this issue. We have prioritized this initiative as our top and most immediate priority.
Second Quarter Successes
  • Continued to actively work with Smith and Jones on the development of a statewide DSP recruitment campaign
  • Completed work on best practices
  • Continued work on a DSP profile for use by the DEI initiative
  • Finalized and shared report on recommended regulatory relief with OPWDD, resulting in the formation of a workgroup at OPWDD to address recruitment and retention-related regulatory reform
  • Prepared and conducted a survey to capture DSP educational offerings
  • Identified turnover costs for use in advocacy efforts
  • Launched and maintained interest in advocacy campaigns encouraging support for important federal legislation
  • Prepared federal and state economic impact sheets for Chapters’ use in legislative visits
  • Coordinated statewide rallies to support funding for DSPs
New 90-Day Commitments
  • Realign the workgroup to turn focus to longer-term objectives
  • Develop roadmap for comprehensive plan for the second phase of this initiative
While we continue to realize advocacy successes, we have identified weaknesses in our advocacy system that should be addressed to strengthen our efforts. By implementing improvements to our advocacy framework, we will shift our efforts from reactive to proactive, position The Arc New York as a primary resource for information and solutions for the I/DD field, and develop a robust and informed advocacy network that can be a mobilized to advocate with a collective voice.  
Second Quarter Successes
  • Conducted survey on Family and Self-Advocacy groups
  • Socialized the concept of a more comprehensive, less siloed joint committee structure with the Issues & Positions and Governmental Affairs Committees
New 90-Day Commitments
  • Finalize a report and recommendation outlining the workgroup’s efforts
  • Develop an RFP for a consultant to aid and advise in implementing the workgroup’s strategy 
  • Socialize and seek approval from BOG for a new, combined advocacy committee
Fiscal Sustainability  
We intend to create a toolkit for each service provided throughout the Organization to achieve positive financial outcomes to maximize quality and opportunities for the people we support. Using these toolkits we will identify, promote, and communicate best practices to achieve financial sustainability through metrics and efficient operations to provide the highest quality services to the individuals we support.  
Second Quarter Successes
  • Development of best practice guides for seven separate programs has been approximately 50% completed
  • RFP for accounting software was developed and sent; responses were reviewed and interviews of finalists scheduled
  • Common chart of accounts, standardized reporting, and timeline for Chapter engagement continues to be explored 
New 90-Day Commitments
  • Interview all finalists for accounting platform and make final selection by year end
  • Finalize all best practice guides
  • Begin socialization of plans to share best practices, metrics, or toolkits
  • Establish a recommendation for the BOG on the implementation of a common chart of accounts and standardized reporting
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion 
We recognize there is a lack of diversity within all levels of The Arc New York. We aim to increase diversity, equity, inclusion (DEI) within The Arc New York. To achieve this goal, we will:  
  • Gather demographic data related to DEI at all levels of The Arc New York  
  • Develop a career pathway for Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) DSPs and others  
  • Create DEI Strategies at all levels of The Arc New York  
  • Create a welcoming environment and inclusive culture  
  • Conduct outreach and collaboration with BIPOC communities  
Second Quarter Successes
  • Completed the development of the DEI survey, and distributed it for testing
  • Completed a toolkit for Chapters to use once survey is distributed
New 90-Day Commitments
  • Complete and distribute the DEI Survey​ and Toolkits
  • Hold interviews to select DEI consultant
  • Share initial survey results with Chapters
  • Use data from surveys to initiate regional facilitated focus groups
Governance & Change Management  
The Arc New York’s current governance model is defined by multiple stakeholder groups with varying levels of understanding of their scope and roles. We intend to create a governance model that is aligned with the overarching vision for The Arc New York, nurtures communication and culture that supports change management throughout the organization. This model will add greater clarity of functional responsibilities & accountabilities, while also integrating and eliminating overlapping roles, resulting in greater efficiency & speed in decision-making.
Second Quarter Successes
  • Discovered that the approach can at times be even more important than the content, and that putting something concrete before stakeholders for reaction is necessary, even if still in draft
  • Engagement plan was finalized and socialization of future state recommendations, along with the processing of feedback, was completed
  • Continued to fine-tune final recommendations and proposed future state
  • Began development of coaching and training enablement
  • Worked to drive integration and assist groups with change management/development of clear initiative roadmap
New 90-Day Commitments
  • Socialize bylaw changes with Legal Committee and BOG; process feedback and determine which portions of the bylaws should be presented for approval to the BOG in January 2022; present and seek approval for that segment of changes
  • Plan segmentation of future state proposal across multiple BOG meetings in 2022, including by-law and other changes (i.e., outline implementation/enablement plan/schedule)
  • Conduct training needs assessment, determining requirements for training, coaching, and mentoring program sufficient to support more strategic focus, increased level of engagement, and more collaborative approach
  • Continue to add detail to future state proposal including in areas of BOG engagement, meetings, and regions – and pilot new BOG approach agendas
  • Hold regional forum(s) and focus groups to expand on implementation approach
Supports & Services  
We plan to identify ways in which The Arc New York can best leverage its collective expertise and experience to identify and recommend innovative, lower cost, quality approaches for service system redesign, including more integrated supportive housing options that offer funding flexibilities and reasonable regulatory standards.
Second Quarter Successes
  • Distributed survey to capture baseline information regarding self-direction and fiscal intermediary services
  • Began analysis of results from survey
  • Worked to develop a forum for Chapters engaged in self-direction to interact and learn from one another
New 90-Day Commitments
  • Complete Chapter interviews to further explore innovative day and residential supports as identified in The Arc New York Innovative Supports Survey earlier this year
  • Complete first draft of modeling for an Enhanced Supportive IRA option
  • Develop a plan to demonstrate the benefits of using remote technology to promote greater independence in individuals living in Supportive IRAs
  • Develop the first draft of a plan to promote to OPWDD the use of respite funding to support flexible retirement options and discuss strategy for necessary waiver amendment for individuals in certified residences
  • Create a forum for meeting with survey respondents identified as having experience with self-determination programs
  • Analyze survey results and develop simple report to Chapters
  • Create a platform for Chapter staff involved/interested in Self-Directed and Fiscal Intermediary services to communicate, share resources and network
  • Create a routine meeting for Chapter staff involved/interested in Self-Directed and Fiscal Intermediary services to communicate, share resources and network
Please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions about our Strategic Vision or progress toward our Strategic goals. We have much work to do but we are well on our way.          
As always, we are STRONGER TOGETHER! 
CONTACT: Erik Geizer, CEO
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