No one plans to fail, but many of us are guilty of failing to plan. In business, companies that establish and follow actionable strategic plans that clearly define and quantify expectations are able to properly position themselves to achieve their desired outcomes. Sound planning principles also apply to state and federal government agencies, including state fish and wildlife agencies. In fact, the autonomy provided to many fish and wildlife agencies as the result of dedicated funding streams means that agencies can, and should, operate within the roadmap of a well-constructed strategic plan. As a part of its service to conservation, the Wildlife Management Institute (WMI) works with our state, federal, and NGO partners to produce actionable strategic plans that are comprehensive, collaborative, transparent, and accountable. Working at multiple levels (Agency, Division, Branch, Work Unit) our strategic planning process incorporates extensive staff input, a review of current strategic planning literature, public involvement, our professional experience and judgment, the knowledge derived from other state conservation programs, and the complexity of managing natural resources in a rapidly changing world.