Cathedral City Councilors prepare to brainstorm strategic plan

CATHEDRAL CITY — On Saturday, Jan. 28, when much of the Coachella Valley is enjoying 65-degree temperatures under the sun, members of the City Council will be holed up in the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel Golf Resort devising and debating a five-year strategic plan.

It is likely one of the most important meetings of the year.

The executive team will also attend. This meeting, scheduled to start at 8 a.m., is open to the public, however, it will not be televised.

On June 22, 2022, City Council authorized the City Manager to enter into a $95,880 contract with Moore Iacofano Goltsman, Inc (MIG) to provide facilitation services for preparation of the 5-Year Strategic Plan. MIG is a multi-disciplinary community design and planning firm with expertise in Strategic Planning, Community Engagement, Facilitation, and Consensus Building.

MIG is also working with the City Manager’s office to design meetings and workshops with City Council and city staff to capture community and organizational information and knowledge important to the strategic planning effort.

Under direction and through consultation with the City Manager’s Office, MIG will design and facilitate a collaborative and inclusive visioning and goal-setting process which will include input from the City Council, the City’s Executive Management Team, and community for development of the 5 Year Strategic Plan.

Strategic Planning is a process in which organizational leaders define their vision for the future and identify important goals, objectives and strategic initiatives to achieve desired outcomes. Strategic planning expands beyond previous goal setting performed by the City since, in addition to annual goals, it also identifies mid to longer range (3 – 5 years) priorities and initiatives as additional focus areas.

A Strategic Plan is a critical planning document to help organizations maintain focus on the future in addition to operationally and tactically addressing current and past issues and needs.

The Strategic Plan should not be viewed as a static document. It should be reviewed, updated and revised annually to reflect changes in business climate, evolving customer needs and expectations, challenges and opportunities created by current and emerging technologies, and new or emerging legal and regulatory compliance mandates, according to City Manager Charles McClendon.

Although different than the goal setting process used in the past, the strategic plan will utilize and incorporate pipeline goals and work programs identified by the City’s Executive Team and City Council. Although prepared and presented as a list of tasks and projects, themes reflecting mission, vision, and values of city staff and City Council emerge through review of this information. Collectively, these themes suggest the following key focus areas:

  • Public safety
  • Fiscal Stability and Sustainability
  • Organizational Transparency and Accountability
  • Community Pride and Investment

Prior to the Strategic Planning Workshop with City Council, information was collected to help inform the direction and content of the Strategic Plan Workshop. This included interviews with City Council, conducting a Strategic Planning Workshop with the Executive Team, and conducting a community survey to assess general attitudes of residents towards city services, programs, resident concerns and priorities.

Councilors will also receive an update on City Council Goals for 2022.


Image Sources

  • Cathedral City: Shutterstock