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A strategy is a way of implementing a method, plan, or series of action steps leading to accomplishing an objective, achieving a goal, or obtaining a result. Clearly defined problems and well-documented needs often lead to better-selected strategies. Strategies form part of a Work Plan or Plan of Action; they are subordinate to objectives.

Existing models of research-based best practices across every knowledge domain are a critical resource for finding and adopting effective strategies. Professional peer-reviewed journals, research reports, long-range plans, and special studies often discuss and recommend strategies.

Surveys, focus groups, public forums, working groups, and task forces can identify and propose strategies popular in a community experiencing a problem or evidencing an unmet need. Front-line service providers often have hands-on experience with strategies that have proven to be effective or ineffective in local settings.

Available personnel, infrastructure, and financial resources will constrain choices among otherwise available strategies. Judiciously selected technology can support a project or initiative as a way to put proposed strategies into action.


Describing Strategies:

In planning to describe strategies in a proposal, several questions prove useful:

  1. What has worked in other places?
  2. What do experts say will work?
  3. What do direct service providers say will work?
  4. What does the affected community say will work?
  5. What do the intended beneficiaries say will work?
  6. How will you know the strategy worked?
  7. How will you adjust strategies if your original ones prove not to work?
  8. Who will implement the strategy?
  9. Who will support the strategy?
  10. What role can technology play in the strategy?
  11. How much will the strategy cost?


This post is one in a series about questions useful in planning competitive grant proposals.

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