Since last year’s budget fiasco, leaders at Lake County Government have collaborated to work towards a strategic planning process.

Each month, the county’s elected officials and department directors meet to share information, discuss potential efficiencies and plan for the future. Early on in the year’s meetings, leadership broke into three subgroups focused on human resources, budget planning and cooperative leadership.

The HR team dissolved this summer after hiring Lorry Parker as the new director of HR. The budget and leadership subgroups have merged to collaborate on master planning, a process the county hoped to put in place before the budget.

“I see master planning and budget planning as parallel processes,” Commissioner Kayla Marcella told the Herald. “A planning structure will allow our budget planning to be proactive, not reactive.”

Thanks to Lake County Director of Human Services Janeen McGee’s facilitation work throughout the summer, the county is now close to finalizing an official set of values, as well as a mission and vision statement.

As proposed, Lake County’s official values include: history, collaboration, proactive, transparency and sustainability.

The drafted vision statement is as follows: “Lake County Government honors our local heritage and builds upon it for future generations to thrive through sustainable resources.”

Lastly, the mission statement reads: “Lake County Government will empower employees and the community through a transparent decision-making process to protect financial and environmental sustainability for the safety and welfare of every person.”

“For us to have that concrete framework and to work within those values ... I think “For us to have that concrete framework and to work within those values ... I think it is going to transform the culture of our organization and the way we do work,” Marcella noted.

On Monday, Lake County leadership attended a Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) training session on strategic planning.

The county presented its values and vision and mission statement to DOLA, participated in analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT), and discussed the 2020 budget.

In the SWOT analysis, institutional knowledge and dedication emerged as strengths, aging infrastructure and succession planning as weaknesses, duplication of services and natural resources as opportunities and Climax’s closure and lack of affordable housing as threats.

DOLA also asked Lake County to identify four priorities for the 2020 budget. Infrastructure replacement and planning, implementation of the county’s compensation study and professional development, expansion and/or development of revenue streams and intergovernmental collaboration with other public entities were identified.

The Board of County Commissioners hopes to gain public input on the county’s proposed values, vision and mission statement before adopting them by resolution.

Residents are encouraged to reach out to the BOCC by phone or email or attend the board’s Sept. 3 meeting at 1 p.m. in which the values and strategic planning process will be discussed.

(1) comment

John Trenary

Hats off to the County Government for working towards a yearly strategic planning process. They may be on the right tract but I believe they missed on the proposed Lake County Values like many companies/governments do when they first try to establish a strategic plan.

Background Definitions: The planning process should start with a Vision. It then uses SWOT analysis to provide in-depth analysis of the internal and external environments. The Vision and SWOT analysis are then overlaid upon the Values (the focus of your article) and Constraints like time, money, people and culture to yield short term action plans for achieving the Vision.

As I look at the proposed Lake County Values, I see the similar “motherhood and apple pie” that most first start planners employ. This is wrong. The term value (like vision) is a tough-to-define work. I have found through my experience in small business and local government planning that instead of asking what are the Lake County Values, ask these three questions:

Why does the Lake County Government exist?

Who does the Lake County Government service?

What is the benefit?

The value statement becomes an important part of the county visibility and marketing outreach. It keeps you focused on what is important so be clear about who you service and what you are going to do for them. DON’T LET THE LAKE COUNTY GOVERNMENT CORE VALUES BECOME GENERIC PLATITUDES!

Have a great Leadville week!

John Trenary

404 W 4th Street,

Leadville, CO 80461

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