During the closing plenary session, Exchange Executive Director, Barbara Hopkins, provided a brief overview of the strategic plan, focusing on the priorities related to enhancing communications, especially draft versions of a new logo. Below are 3 takeaways and highlights from the audience discussion:
- A strategic plan addresses internal strengths and weaknesses and external opportunities and threats (SWOTs) that stand to impact an organization’s mission. It is tied to a budget and supported by both a theory of change (overarching goals to achieve the mission) and strategic priorities (the strategies that will address the SWOTs and implement the theory of change).
- Among the strategic priorities in the current year is implementing a “Communications Roadmap” developed by a consulting firm, Rogue Water, in response to a communications audit that it conducted in Fall 2022.
- The Communications Roadmap recommends development of a new logo and 3 designs were discussed for purposes of obtaining member feedback:
AUDIENCE FEEDBACK HIGHLIGHTS:
- Option C appeared to be the least favored and evoked comments like “we don’t get it” and “feels dated.”
- Options A and B require more work in the opinion of some. Option A evoked comments like “evokes what we do,” “I like the hidden message in it, and the fact that it resembles the urban fabric and feels modern,” and “can the inner shading be more reflective of a building or a river?”
- Option B evoked comments like “I understand its symbolism with there being overlap and a sense of movement,” “the step before the final version feels more modern,” “it has a natural feel,” and “don’t like the big black dot in the middle.”