Frequently Asked Questions
1. Q: In the strategic plan, you mention the four different roles the
DRC will play (Lead, Drive, Catalyze, and Advocate). Can you further
explain these different roles?
2.Q: Why is determining the DRC’s role so important?
3. Q: Why is determining the DRC’s role so important?
4. Q: Does only being focused on Dallas, Collin, and Denton Counties
inhibit the impact DRC can have outside these three counties?
5. Q: What will happen to issues that the DRC supported in the past but are no longer included as a primary focus?
6. Q: Why is Tarrant County not listed as a primary focus area for economic development?
7. Q: A big piece of the economic development strategy is based on
growing industry clusters. Does the DRC have specific industry clusters
it wants to target?
8. Q: The DRC is taking a strategic position on PK-12 education in Dallas County. What about higher education?
9. Q: Will any programs and events or councils and committees be added, changed, or removed?
10. Q: What organizational changes are happening to align with the strategic focus?
11. Q: What will be the roles and responsibilities of the new Regional Strategic Advisor?
12. Q: How will the community know how the DRC is performing against the strategic plan?
13. Q: When will implementing the strategic plan be completed?
14. Q: How will the new plan affect members that are small businesses?
15. Q: What process did the DRC use to create the new strategic plan?
16.Q: Where did this idea for the strategic plan come from?
17. Q: What will change today? 18. Q: When will the goals set forth in the strategic plan be accomplished?
1. Q: In the strategic plan, you mention the four different roles the DRC will play (Lead, Drive, Catalyze, and Advocate). Can you further explain these different roles?
A: ‘Lead’ means that the DRC is the primary entity that sets the vision and objectives
for success as well as builds support with other key groups as needed. Furthermore, the
DRC has the right, capabilities and ethos to lead the issue. Issues in the ‘Lead’ role will
be a permanent part of the DRC strategy. Currently, local economic development is the
only issue where the DRC plans to have a ‘Lead’ role.
‘Drive’ means that the DRC is one of the primary entities involved in driving the issue forward. The DRC either already has or will develop the capabilities to drive the issue and will ensure that a comprehensive strategy is in place. Issues where the DRC has a ‘Drive’ role will be part of the strategy for the foreseeable future. Currently, public education is the only issue where DRC plans to have a ‘Drive’ role.
‘Catalyze’ means that the DRC is a major player using its expertise and status to catalyze other entities to push toward a resolution. While catalyzing the issue, the DRC will steward the issue until leadership and clarity of scope is in place. A prime example of the DRC’s catalyzing efforts is the DFW Marketing Team. The DFW Marketing Team consists of 45 organizations and municipalities responsible for marketing
and attracting companies to the region. The DRC used (and continues to use) its resources to help catalyze this effort - but does not ‘Lead’ or ‘Drive’ the effort - in order to benefit the entire North Texas region
‘Advocate’ means that the DRC will develop a position and provide support to issues on an as needed basis. The level of advocacy and support will depend on the issue leader’s strength, issue priority, and progress to date. Advocacy may take the form of a position paper or a formal letter of support. 2.Q: Why is determining the DRC’s role so important?
A: The four different roles help the DRC allocate resources to align with the given
strategic priorities. Roughly 50% of future resources will be allocated to ‘Lead’
issues, 25% of resources to ‘Drive’ issues, and 25% of resources to
‘Catalyze’ and ‘Advocate’ issues. Understanding what role we play and the required
resourcing will limit scope creep and help the DRC focus on activities that are a match
to the DRC’s mission.3. Q: Why is determining the DRC’s role so important?
A: Although the DRC will ‘Lead’ economic development efforts, doing so will require
strong collaboration with other economic development leaders
(e.g., Plano Chamber of Commerce, Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce) to
move issues forward. Over the past five years, the DRC’s economic development
activities have already been primarily focused across these three counties, so the
DRC already has experience leading economic development in these three counties.
Going forward, the DRC will continue this focus, but will do so more explicitly and with
a higher level of collaboration with other organizations. 4. Q: Does only being focused on Dallas, Collin, and Denton Counties inhibit theimpact DRC can have outside these three counties?
A: No it doesn’t. Our primary economic development focus will be Dallas, Collin, and Denton Counties. For regional economic development and for issues that extend beyond these three counties, the DRC will provide support on an as needed basis (as it has done in the past). In fact, the DRC is creating a new executive level position with a sole focus on regional issues to ensure that our regional impact
continues to grow.5. Q: What will happen to issues that the DRC supported in the past but are no longer included as a primary focus?
A: Many of the issues in which the DRC was involved in the past will still be addressed as part of our Economic Development work. However, because of the increased focus of the DRC and since the DRC’s primary mission is to improve the economic prosperity of the Dallas region, some issues will receive less attention and fewer resources from the DRC than they have in the past. These issues will be addressed as part of our new ‘Catalyze’ and ‘Advocate’ roles.6. Q: Why is Tarrant County not listed as a primary focus area for economic development?
A: Tarrant County is obviously a critical part of the North Texas economy; however the DRC has historically been focused on economic development activities in the eastern part of North Texas. In order to drive greater impact the DRC has chosen to concentrate its efforts in Dallas, Collin, and Denton Counties. Nevertheless, the DRC will continue to support economic development efforts in Tarrant County on an as needed basis.7. Q: A big piece of the economic development strategy is based on growing industry clusters. Does the DRC have specific industry clusters it wants to target?
A: Identifying key industry clusters for the region will be an outcome of the strategic plan.
The DRC will go through a ‘deep dive’ process to identify industries that are a best match
to the North Texas region based on the region’s capabilities, industry growth projections,
and overall opportunity. After this process is completed, the DRC will select several
industries on which to focus future efforts. 8. Q: The DRC is taking a strategic position on PK-12 education in Dallas County. What about higher education?
A: The DRC plans to do a deep and detailed review of the education landscape and will take an appropriate role in other education institutions based on our findings. The DRC’s view is that the purpose of our public education system is ensuring that students are college and workforce ready. The DRC understands that in order to accomplish that goal, the solution must focus not only on the level of education in our primary
and secondary schools, but also on our higher education institutions. At this point in time, where the DRC focuses and the level at which we will focus is still being determined. Over the next few months, the DRC will be developing a holistic education strategy that will provide further detail on this question.9. Q: Will any programs and events or councils and committees be added, changed, or removed?
A: Yes. The DRC conducted a program audit to ensure that all programs are aligned with the new strategic focus, which means that several programs were identified for removal. Over the next several months, a transition plan will be created for each of these programs. As the strategic plan is implemented, new programs will be created to help the DRC meet its new focus. Additionally, the councils and committees will be restructured in order to better match the new strategic focus.10. Q: What organizational changes are happening to align with the strategic focus?
A: Several changes have already been made to align the DRC organizational structure
with the updated strategic focus. Specifically more resources have been re-allocated
to economic development and education and will continue to be adjusted over the coming
months. Additionally, a new executive level ‘Regional Strategic Advisor’ position is being
created to help guide the DRC’s efforts relating to regional issues.
An Education division has been created with for the sole purpose of driving public education in the region. The Public Policy division has begun the process of taking on all policy issues addressed at the Chamber and have added additional staff to accommodate the larger workload. A specific department for member engagement and events has been created to oversee and concentrate all programming for the Chamber. This includes leadership programs such as Young Professionals and Leadership Dallas, along with events such as Annual Meeting, Women’s Business Conference, and Legislative Luncheons.11. Q: What will be the roles and responsibilities of the new Regional Strategic Advisor?
A: The Regional Strategic Advisor (Vice President of Regional Strategic Initiatives)
will be responsible for developing the DRC’s regional strategy. Her/his primary activities
will include identifying and prioritizing regional initiatives, developing a landscape for each
issue, and creating a roadmap for partnering with other regional entities. Additionally, the
Regional Strategic Advisor will spend a significant amount of their time fostering and
strengthening relationships with other North Texas organizations. 12. Q: How will the community know how the DRC is performing against the strategic plan?
A: The DRC has identified key strategic and operational metrics across all departments
that support the new strategic objectives. For example, the primary economic metrics
that the DRC will focus on include GDP and quality of life across the region. In order to
assure movement of the strategic plan, the DRC will be monitoring and reporting on progress against each metric on a regular basis.13. Q: When will implementing the strategic plan be completed?
A: Many visible changes have already taken place at the Chamber and the overall
implementation process for the strategic plan is scheduled to take place over the next 12–24 months.14. Q: How will the new plan affect members that are small businesses?
A: As part of the strategic plan implementation process, the DRC will
evaluate its member services models for all sizes of businesses. Within
this evaluation, the DRC will ensure that programs, activities, and events
are optimized to meet the needs of all DRC members. Additionally, a small
business advisory council will be established to specifically focus on the needs
of small businesses in the region. This group will have a dedicated member of
the staff that has already begun specif work on small business programming and initiatives.15. Q: What process did the DRC use to create the new strategic plan?
A: The strategic planning process was facilitated through a joint effort of the DRC
and The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), on a pro-bono basis. BCG took an in-depth
look at the overall Chamber organization by conducting a large member survey, staff interviews, current/former member interviews, gathering statistics and compiling background information on each program area, and also benchmarking based on peer groups throughout the Nation. This process also included a SWOT analysis of the region and Chamber all to identify future strategic options and availabilities. Then, a futures committee consisting of 42 highly engaged individuals from the community and local businesses met to discuss shaping future plans. Through five meetings, each at least two hours long, numerous conference call, and many discussions the committee helped to take BCG’s findings and shape a high level path that the Chamber would take forward. After a final report was created by BCG, the Chamber’s Executive
Committee and Board of Directors reviewed the proposal to suggest changes and eventually approve of the plan.16. Q: Where did this idea for the strategic plan come from?
A: The DRC has not performed a thorough strategic planning
process with the help of an outside, unbiased opinion in over ten years.
Furthermore, like most member companies, the current economic climate in the
United States provided the optimal time and need to do a deep-dive into the practices
and daily operations at the Chamber in order to tune structure, trim excess, and
create synergy both within and outside the Chamber office walls.17. Q: What will change today?
A: A re-organization of the staff has already occurred with numerous roles and reporting
sturctures changing throughout the organization. Additionally, the communications department has been busy at work developing new event calendars that are e-mailed to members on a weekly basis, along with enhancing the monthly Chamber Report, and improving the way in which the region is presented through relocation and development guides. Several councils and committees are being restructured, with multiple groups
being created while others are phased out.18. Q: When will the goals set forth in the strategic plan be accomplished?
A: Over the next five years with several milestones on a quarterly and yearly basis.
It is important that the DRC is able to accurately measure progress and have the proper
benchmarks/metrics in place. Much of this is dependent on when official data is released
by organizations on the local, state, and federal levels.
Each division within the Chamber has an overall vision along with goals,
objectives, and tactics that will allow real progress to be made over time.