ACS Leadership Development System® Strategic Planning Retreats

The ACS Leadership Development System® (ACS LDS) offers 1-1/2 day facilitated Strategic Planning Retreats (SPRs) for ACS committees, local sections, divisions and other interested governance groups.  The SPRs expand on the principles covered in the ACS LDS Strategic Planning course and provide participants with the opportunity to apply a strategic planning process for their group.   Participants will confirm or define their group’s mission and vision, develop a portfolio of goals and a prioritized list of strategies to meet these goals.  Most importantly, group leaders coalesce around an actionable strategic plan and a clear direction to move forward as a team.

The materials were customized to our situation and we were able to come away with a 3-5 year Strategic Plan for immediate implementation that has allowed us to hit the ground running and not lose the momentum achieved in the energizing weekend event.   The facilitators understand how ACS works and [can identify] the resources available to help us meet our goals.

Lisa Houston, Energy and Fuels Division

Strategic planning is not rocket science; anyone can do it and there is no one best planning process. However, the SPR provides ACS groups with a disciplined, creative strategic planning process  and attunes the group’s goals to those in the ACS Strategic Plan.

Benefits of scheduling an SPR:

  • Synergistic and greater impact results: Planning teams engage in a process that aligns group goals with the ACS Strategic Plan.
  • Ready for an immediate start: Teams take away their own goals and actionable strategic plan.
  • Transportable skills: Individual participants build skills that can be applied elsewhere.


The retreat is a partnership between the participating group and the ACS Leadership Advisory Board (LAB) with both stakeholders making a financial investment in the process.  Interested groups should consider the following costs for hosting a retreat:

Retreat Fee:  
$2750 Includes: Registration, course manual, handouts, shipping, flipcharts, laptop/projector and certificates of completion.
Facilitation Fee: 
$3500 Includes: two facilitators, pre-retreat conference call(s) preparation, pre-work materials and surveys, onsite facilitation, follow up reports from session and priority setting for: STEP, TOWS, Goals and Strategies/Measurements.
Travel & Onsite Costs:
 A minimum number of 10 participants is highly recommended.  The participating groups should budget accordingly for participant travel expenses, room rental fees, meals** 

ACS Committees interested in conducting an SPR should contact their staff liaison by August 31 of the year prior to hosting a retreat to request funding support.   Limited funding for local sections and technical divisions is available via LSAC and DAC Grant s.   Local Sections and Technical Divisions should plan and budget accordingly.

**LAB pays for the travel expenses (meals, hotel, airfare) for two facilitators.


Questions?  Review our FAQs or contact leaders@acs.org or more details.