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Planning and Governance Solutions


Strategic Planning Facilitation 
Every organization needs to plan for its future, and with NAR’s Core Standards, it’s a requirement to keep your charter. A thorough examination or update of where you are and where you want to be is a necessary step to charting a future course for your association’s success. This solution can be tailored to your needs and can be a one-day session or longer, depending on the scope of your plan. We provide preparation for, facilitation, and follow-up for a variety of planning models or a combination of several. All planning sessions will involve some pre-session reading and completion of an electronic survey by members of the Board of Directors, the planning group. All of these processes will provide for the development or revision of goals and objectives. We deliver a completed strategic plan and related report with recommended resources to assist in plan implementation.

Member Survey and Value Audits
When was the last time you launched a comprehensive survey (or value audit) to ensure you understand what programs and services your members value the most? A value audit can be instrumental in determining association goals and is ideally completed before a planning session. This audit also can help you direct your resources into those programmatic areas that your members need and want. We are available to help you develop the survey and assist you in identifying and analyzing key results by examining key member segments to assist you in program development and communication.

Governance Reviews
Is your governance built to ensure your association is able to effectively carry out your goals and objectives, and move you into the future you want? Or are you bogged down with the processes and structure you developed decades ago? We can help you become a more nimble organization with an audit of your current board, committee, and staff structures and help you identify desired and necessary changes.

​Business Planning
You have your plan and it looks great. But it’s not moving forward. We will provide you with a business planning template, show you how to use it, and offer tips on how to approach the process in a successful manner. We can help you with realistic assignments and deadlines, making sure that your objectives go to the right place with clear direction. Aligning your plan with everything you do is the answer to your success!

Succession Planning
Does staff and the Board have a defined roadmap to follow should something happen to you or a senior staff member? Is the Board of Directors moving the Nominations Committee towards a Board Development Committee structure? We can provide guidance, templates, and processes to put everyone’s mind at ease and ready to expect the unexpected!

Organizational Assessments 
An organizational assessment (structural audit) involves a thorough review of the association’s governance, staffing, services, communications, facilities, and technology. It’s an intensive evaluation of how the association is best positioned to meet its mission and provides necessary and relevant services to its members. The assessment will require extensive preparation by both association staff and the consultant prior to the onsite audit, and at least two days of onsite work by the consultant who will meet with volunteers and staff, evaluate documents and systems and examine facilities. Both association staff and volunteer leaders will have responsibilities during the onsite assessment (interviews and meetings).

See what a few of your peers say about our work in Planning and Governance solutions!

Succession Planning – More than just a drill!
“With the importance of ensuring that our association can appropriately handle any unexpected disruption from the absence of a staff member, whether short-term or permanent, having Ginger Downs guide our Sr. Staff through succession planning, was essential.  Not only did Ginger help us realize the gaps we needed to cover, but her session put us on the road to finding new direction for staff professional development at all levels of the organization!  Ginger’s process not only helped us put a plan in place, but it also set us up for the future growth of our individual staff members.  Our Sr. Staff were blown away with the creative ideas and motivation that evolved from the process!  I highly recommend utilizing Ginger for your succession planning needs! 

 - Janet L. Kane, Chief Executive Officer, MetroTex  Association of Realtors

Strategic Planning

“Working with Martin and Downs on the development of our strategic plan was a highly professional and insightful process. Taking the feedback we received in our membership survey, Alice and Ginger were able to provide tangible solutions and direction for our association to consider.  Alice facilitated a thought-provoking strategic planning session with our committee and the results are a solid road map for our association as we move into our next chapter.  I would highly recommend Martin and Downs for your strategic planning needs”. 

- Shanna Terroso, CEO, REALTOR® Association of York and Adams Counties (PA)

Business Planning
"Ginger’s business planning session was exactly what we needed to fill the gap between the strategic plan and implementation. My board members now feel empowered to accomplish the goals in our strategic plan. Ginger brings a wealth of knowledge and experience and is exactly what our Association needed. "
-    Tina Grimes, RCE, e-Pro, CEO, Rogue Valley Association of REALTORS® & Southern Oregon MLS

Governance Review
"When I was CEO at the Oklahoma Association of REALTORS, Alice Martin facilitated our governance review committee’s background study and first meeting, and we were fortunate to have her experience and skills as we approached this difficult subject. Alice has a deep knowledge of the REALTOR® organization and the ability to use that knowledge to better direct a conversation about a complex subject like governance.  It was highly advantageous to have her objectivity and insight, as well as her ability to manage a group discussion as we began our thinking process. We are happy to recommend her for other opportunities she may have to serve as a facilitator."

– Lisa Noon, CAE, RCE

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