Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Do NGOs have strategy?

When we talk about strategy, we unconsciously talk about strategy of enterprise. How about the NGOs? Do they have strategies? Is that crucial for them to have strategies? When I browse the webs of the NGOs, like Greenpeace and WWF, I see the following:

Greenpeace (1)
Greenpeace is the leading independent campaigning organization that uses peaceful protest and creative communication to expose global environmental problems and to promote solutions that are essential to a green and peaceful future.

WWF (2)
By 2020, WWF will conserve many of the world’s most ecologically important regions by working in partnership with others to:
  •     Protect and restore species and their habitats
  •     Strengthen local communities' ability to conserve the natural resources they depend upon
  •     Transform markets and policies to reduce the impact of the production and consumption of commodities
  •     Ensure that the value of nature is reflected in decisions made by individuals, communities, governments and businesses
  •     Mobilize hundreds of millions of people to support conservation
Are these strategies for the NGOs? Strategy, according to David Collis, is the combination of objective, scope and advantage. It is a precise statement of the short-term objective considering their advantage in the scope of customer, geographic location and vertical integration. Hence, we may call the above “goal” or “mission” rather than “strategy”.

Even though David Collis stresses the significance of strategy, but I would say that strategy is not an indispensable factor for an organization. From one perspective, the mission provides a fundamental and comprehensive concept for the operation and could guide the employees. From the other perspective, instead of bringing about a general strategy, strategy under specific projects may be more action-oriented and consequently of greater significance to employees.



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