Success Stories

City of Beach, North Dakota

JM Strategies conducted an extensive strategic planning process for the City of Beach which resulted in the creation of a three-year (2019-2022) strategic plan. Quantitative and qualitative research of residents and the business community provided a foundation for community planning sessions.

The end result was the development of a comprehensive plan that laid out the community’s vision and aspirations, desired outcomes, and four strategic areas of focus. The plan has been embraced by the community and was publicly recognized by Governor Doug Burgum at the 2019 Main Street Summit.

In 2021, the City of Beach once again retained JM Strategies to build off the success of the strategic plan and assist the city in creating a new economic development structure.

Bismarck Mandan Chamber EDC

Following the 2018 merger of the Bismarck-Mandan Chamber of Commerce and the Bismarck-Mandan Development Corporation, JM Strategies provided research and facilitation services that led to the development of the first ever strategic plan for the new constituted Bismarck Mandan Chamber EDC.

JM Strategies developed and managed an extensive research process that engaged Chamber EDC members, staff, directors, and area business community members. JM Strategies facilitated a planning session of Chamber EDC board members and staff that identified strategic areas of focus, goals, and objectives based on the research findings. From this session, Chamber EDC staff and directors crafted a practical strategic plan for the organization that is guiding its work in serving its members and developing the region’s economy.

Wahpeton CDC and Breckenridge (MN) Port Authority

Between November 2016 and April 2017, JM Strategies conducted qualitative research services for the Wahpeton Community Development Corporation (CDC) and Breckenridge, Minnesota Port Authority. The project was undertaken to explore community attitudes and perceptions of local economic development. Key community stakeholders – business leaders, municipal leaders, and opinion-setters – participated in four focus group sessions.

The findings from these sessions resulted in a number of recommendations from JM Strategies, chief among them that the two communities merge their economic development efforts.

As a result of this process, both communities took the initiative and created the Southern Valley Economic Development Authority (SVEDA), which brought together economic initiatives for the cities of Wahpeton and Breckenridge and Richland and Wilkin counties. JM Strategies work and findings were highlighted in a two-part series in the Wahpeton Daily News.

Lewis & Clark Development Group

JM Strategies provided qualitative research and strategic planning services in 2016 which resulted in both the rebranding of the Lewis & Clark Development Group and the creation of three-year plan to guide the three entities comprising the LCD Group: Lewis & Clark Regional Development Council, Lewis & Clark Certified Development Company, and CommunityWorks North Dakota. JM Strategies returned in 2020 to facilitate the process that resulted in a new three-year plan for Lewis & Clark Development Group.

North Dakota Association of Regional Councils

JM Strategies provided strategic planning services to the North Dakota Association of Regional Councils in 2018 to guide the organization in developing a strategic plan with the goal of deepening NDARC’s policy footprint and improved collaboration among North Dakota’s eight regional councils.

Tennessee State Library & Archives

JM Strategies provided the Tennessee State Library & Archives (TSLA) with project management, research, and consulting services in the evaluation of the agency’s Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) five-year plan. The project was conducted in accordance with guidelines as set forth by the Institute Museum and Library Services (IMLS). JM Strategies deployed a comprehensive research process that engaged public librarians and Tennessee library community stakeholders in assessing the how the plan met the needs of the state’s libraries and the patrons they serve. The evaluation was followed by a needs assessment. Taken together, this information provided a foundation for TSLA to develop a new LSTA five-year plan.

North Dakota State Library

JM Strategies facilitated the process that created the North Dakota State Library’s 2017-2020 Strategic Plan. During the life of the plan, the State Library underwent a significant reorganization and had to contend with difficult fiscal realities. Organizational cultural issues also emerged during this time which impacted NDSL’s work.

JM Strategies worked with NDSL’s executive management team in crafting a strategic plan in line with the agency’s new organizational model. The new plan is designed to empower decision-making at the divisional level, foster greater staff collaboration, and address long-neglected cultural challenges. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) is a major theme of the plan. “Fostering a welcoming and inclusive environment for all” is now one of NDSL’s new guiding principles ensuring all NDSL services, programming, and internal operations meet the needs of patrons from all backgrounds.

North Dakota Association of Counties & North Dakota Department of Human Services

For decades, North Dakota’s social service system was built around county-based delivery model. Attempts to update this increasingly antiquated system were unsuccessful until 2017. During that year’s legislative session, the North Dakota legislature passed a package comprehensive reforms. Among the provisions of the legislation was the requirement that the North Dakota Department of Human Services, in collaboration with the North Dakota Association of Counties, undertake a process that would lead to formal recommendations for a new social service system in the 2019 legislative session. JM Strategies co-facilitated the process that ultimately led to the creation of the state’s new social service system.

“JM Strategies has been an integral part of the growth of our organization. We began using JM strategies to facilitate our strategic plan. Jason did an excellent job and now this plan is a document we actually use in decision- making and goal setting. From there we hired JM Strategies to oversee our marketing campaigns which include many major initiatives including rebranding the organization, overhauling our website, social media promotion, and marketing materials. Jason is always willing to take on the challenges we ask and has definitely moved the needle on our organization’s visibility, name recognition, and social media presence.”

Brent Ekstrom - Executive Director, Lewis & Clark Development Group

“We were confident the City of Beach was in good hands with JM Strategies facilitating our Strategic Plan and Economic Development & Assessment Evaluation. Jason’s approachable personality made it very easy for stakeholders to be fully engaged in the process. His experience in public relations, and ability to communicate effectively were critical aspects contributing to our successes.”

Kim Gaugler – Auditor, City of Beach, North Dakota

"Our local Community Development Corporation worked with JM Strategies on an extensive review of our economic development efforts. Jason made the process simple for participants and gave us findings that were comprehensive and easy to utilize. As a result, we completely overhauled our economic development structure and merged efforts with our neighboring community. I highly recommend JM Strategies."

Perry Miller – Richland County Commissioner and former Wahpeton (ND) City Council Member

“I worked with Jason Matthews from JM Strategies to refresh our department’s strategic plan. The entire process went smoothly and Jason’s communication and facilitation skills are outstanding. I would certainly choose JM Strategies again based on this positive experience.”

Renae Moch - Director, Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health

"Jason is a trustworthy go-to collaborator for me on projects that require strategic planning, group facilitation, and survey development and analysis. What I value most though is his critical thinking skills. Jason 'ups' our game on every project we use JM Strategies for."

Ray Ann Kilen - R Kilen Consulting

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