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Future Search 2011


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  • 1. From March 28 – 30, 2011 over 100 community leaders including public officials and a cross section of stakeholders from the MACC Area came together for a ground breaking Future Search focused on 21st Century Governance in the Greater Holland/Zeeland area
  • 2. What is MACC? Macatawa Area Coordinating Council
    • Established in 1993 to encourage cooperation among neighboring units of government on area wide issues
    • Currently serves as a coordinating body for 7 townships and 2 cities making up the Greater Holland/Zeeland area
  • 3. MACC Geographic Area
  • 4. Why Future Search?
    • We believe the Holland/Zeeland community is a very special place
    • We recognize the world has changed
    • We acknowledge that economic forces have impacted the effectiveness of our area business models and the way we must approach our future
  • 5. Why Focus on Local Governance?
    • Governments provide essential services
    • Business provides revenues that flow through government, non-profit and educational institutions
    • Cost of government services directly impacts economic competitiveness and quality of life
    • We must find ways to deliver essential government services at lower cost per capita
  • 6. Government vs. Governance
      • Governance is defined as the act of governing.
      • It is essentially how our governments and other publically approved organizations serve our community.
  • 7. Together we can create a bold new future
  • 8. Our Future Search goals:
    • Bring local public officials together with business and community stakeholders to explore new ways to:
      • deliver essential services effectively and more cost-efficiently
      • be a model for innovation and best practices in local governance
      • preserve our exceptional quality of life
  • 9. What is Future Search?
    • Unique 2 ½ day planning process
    • Brings together a large group of diverse stakeholders focused on a complex issue or goal
    • 60-100 participants work in small groups
    • Small groups alternate from all stakeholders to mixed groups
    • Highly structured and task focused/outcome of each task builds on the next
    • Goal is shared commitment around specific action
  • 10. Future Search Principles
    • Whole system in the room – cross section of key stakeholders
    • Exploration before action – see the big picture, put issue in global/historical perspective
    • Seek Common Ground - focus on mutually desirable futures
    • Shared Commitment – take responsibility for outcomes and action
  • 11. Let ’ s see how it works…
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  • 13. Future Search had 95 participants representing 10 stakeholder groups
  • 14. 23 Elected and Appointed Officials
  • 15. 18 Business Representatives
  • 16. 10 Education Leaders
  • 17. 11 Planning Commission and Utilities representatives
  • 18. 8 Public Safety/Public Health/ Transportation representatives
  • 19. 12 Non-Profit and Social Agencies Leaders
  • 20. 7 Authorities/Operating Entities/Parks Representatives
  • 21. Participants
    • 95 people representing 10 stakeholder groups
    • have this show up on first slide and then run through first batch
    9 Citizens at Large
  • 22. 2 Youth Representatives
  • 23. 5 State Representatives
  • 24. All working together…
  • 25. Focused on a common goal…
  • 26. Finding new ways for The Zeeland/Holland community…
  • 27. to improve effectiveness and cost efficiency…
  • 28. Of local governance…
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  • 46. Focus on the PAST pre 1970-2000 Participants moved about the room and populated 4 timelines over 20 feet in length, displaying key events from four perspectives. Each group then synthesized the input and told the story of our community!
  • 47. Focus on the PAST Community Stories
      • heritage, family, faith, entrepreneurship,
      • baby boomers moving in, changing
      • demographics, uptick in prosperity in 90 ’ s
      • followed by decline and loss of jobs
    • GLOBAL
    • round world to flat, now global centric, massive pace of change, knowledge constantly doubles, wars, natural disasters, social unrest, recessions, fight for natural resources...out of disruption comes opportunity. Innovation is the theme of our reaction to adversity
    Community stories from the timelines reflected four perspectives: Personal Global Community Governance
  • 48. timeline stories, continued...
    • settlement of H/Z, demographic shift from settlers to other migrants, economic changes, philanthropy, social service, faith, strong work ethic, education, healthcare, governments changing, city annexation, quality of life
    • little structural change in local governance since origins, governance challenged by community growth, opportunities and needs, Holland not immune to global turmoil, need for cooperation across government units, MACC and WMEAC, connected global market requires us to change
  • 49. Focus on PRESENT: Major Trends
    • The group generated a VERY large mind map describing close to 100 external realities/trends shaping H/Z governance in these areas:
      • economic
      • social
      • environmental
      • technical
    • Every participant then engaged in a multi-voting exercise documenting major trends having the most significant impact on Holland /Zeeland governance
  • 50. Evaluating the Mind-Map to identify and connect major trends
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  • 56. Major Trends
    • Less $ for government/higher costs/higher expectations
    • Rate of change accelerating/global competition for economic vitality
    • Demographic shift
      • Increased # of people in poverty
      • Baby boomers driving aging population
    • Education gap
    • Building inclusive communities
  • 57. Prouds and Sorries Each stakeholder group was asked to discuss how major trends affect what they do. Stakeholder groups were then asked to present what they have done that they are most proud of, and most sorry about? Group presentations were brutally honest and began laying the groundwork for what was to come…
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  • 64. Prouds and Sorries A sample of the output from all groups. Prouds and Sorries enable each stakeholder group to acknowledge and take responsibility for their actions
    • Partnerships
    • Safe communities
    • Framework for collaboration
    • People taking risks, thinking outside the box
    • Public/private partnerships
    • Leadership support
    • LGChem
    • Macatawa Greenway
    • MACC
    • Quality of life
    • Jobs have left Michigan
    • Young people are leaving
    • complexity of gov ’ t
    • Divisiveness
    • Slow movement on big issues
    • Not focused on future
    • Have not embraced diversity
    • Economic segregation in community
    • Water sharing agreement
    • Cleanliness of Lake Mac
  • 65. Desired Future Scenarios - the year is 2035 This was a time for mixed groups to reflect on their desired futures and dream about what Holland/Zeeland governance could look like in the year 2035. Creative presentations allowed for group fun, but everyone took the task seriously, describing bold, innovative ideas and an inspiring new future for our area....
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  • 71. Finding Common Ground The large group challenge was to listen carefully and find the common ground across all of the thought-provoking future scenarios.
  • 72. Common Ground Themes
    • Equity, Values, Fairness
    • Regional Governance
    • Common Master Plan
    • Status Quo is Unsustainable
    • Public Safety
    • Optimal Health
    • World Class Education
    • Diversity
    • Jobs
    • Shared Values
    Common Ground is the starting point from which diverse stakeholders come together and agree on shared action areas.
  • 73. 10 Action Statements
    • We aspire to drive equity, value and fairness in representation, funding and services
    • We aspire to plan and deliver high quality public services throughout the MACC Area using a regional delivery system, where it makes sense.
    • We will create a dynamic, long-term community plan that supports a world-class economic environment and promotes a strong quality of life for all.
    Groups formed around the 10 common ground themes and spent many hours working through the challenging task of creating action statements around each
  • 74. Action Statements, cont’d
    • We commit to being a world-class benchmark for community governance effectiveness, cost efficiency, flexibility and planning.
    • We aspire to a public safety system that works cooperatively as a component of the judicial system.
    • We will assure conditions exist for all people in our community to achieve optimal health.
  • 75. Action Statements, cont’d
    • We aspire to a healthy, innovative economic environment allowing us to lead our region and state in the rate of new jobs created.
    • We aspire to create a World Class Education System in the Holland/Zeeland Area.
    • We aspire to embrace diversity in all of its forms as an enrichment to our community.
  • 76. Action statements cont’d 10. In all of our work going forward, we agree to a set of shared values including: Participants knew they were representing their community in this process, and that these action statements would help shape our future.
  • 77. Future Search is just a beginning
    • We have opened the door for bold possibilities
    • Now the real work starts!
    • Action Statements lay the groundwork for community collaboration and leadership around a set of priorities
    • Over the next 60 days, process, structure and community leadership will be be put in place to develop more detail and a clear communication plan
  • 78. Future Search Action Areas Implementation framework
    • Bring together community champions for each action area and clarify overlaps/redundancies (April-May)
    • Finalize Action Statements and produce Future Search community report (May)
    • Establish committees, plans, process and support as needed to begin working effectively (May-June)
    • Inform and involve broader community (ongoing)
    • Monitor and report progress (May-June)
    • Implement and celebrate ongoing results
  • 79. Future Search Original Planning Committee
    • Dick Haworth (Chairman Emeritus, Haworth) co-chair
    • Tim Hemingway (Board Chair HBPW) co-chair
    • Jim Brooks (Chair, Model Community Initiatives)
    • Steve Bulthuis (Executive Director, MACC)
    • Janet DeYoung (Executive Director, H/Z Community Foundation)
    • Jerry Felix (Manager, Park Township)
    • Terry Hofmeyer (Supervisor, Laketown Township)
    • Greg Holcombe (Community Planner, Riverview)
    • Tim Klunder (City Manager, Zeeland)
    • Don Komejan (Manager, Holland Charter Township)
    • Randy Thelen (President, Lakeshore Advantage)
    • Al Vanderberg (Administrator, Ottawa County)
    • Soren Wolff (City Manager, City of Holland)
    • Linda Brand (Executive Director, Strategic Leadership Forum)
    • Sandra Janoff (Facilitator and co-founder Future Search )
  • 80. What did Future Search participants say about their experience…
    • Wow – lots of hard issues coming to the forefront and forcing us to think into the future – some really good thinking going on here..
    • A truly unbelievable experience. I feel revitalized and hopeful about our community
    • Great model for how communities need to tackle this new economy – I will advocate for this type of process in my work throughout the state and at the federal level
    • Great two days collaborating sharing and learning, I feel fortunate to be a part of it.
    • To see so many people from two communities and various sectors come together acknowledging common ground and tackling some tough issues was really unexpected.
  • 81. Stay informed, get involved!
    • Visit
            • Sign up for updates
            • Provide feedback
            • Get involved!
  • 82. Very Special Thanks to Haworth
    • For underwriting the Future Search conference
    • For providing an inspiring environment, with welcoming spaces and energizing natural light everywhere
    • For friendly, efficient staff
    • For Virginia Conklin
    • For your ongoing support of the Model Community Initiatives and the Holland/Zeeland community