SOAR is a positive approach to strategic thinking and planning. It allows an organization to construct its future through collaboration, shared understanding, and a commitment to action.
SOAR stands for Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations, Results and follows 9 steps:
- Identify stakeholders
- Design your appreciative inquiry (AI) questionnaire
- Engage other stakeholders
- Reshape conversations
- Summarize the organization’s positive course
- Create a compelling future vision based on the existing strengths
- Assess opportunities
- Create goal statements
- Create action plans
Components of the soar process (strengths, opportunities, aspirations, results)
- Strengths: What can we build on as an organization?
- Opportunities: What are our stake-holders asking for?
- Aspirations: What do we care deeply about?
- Results: How do we know we are succeeding?
University of Missouri’s SOAR Model Analysis
Stavros, J. & Hinrichs, G. 2009. The thin book of SOAR: Building strengths-based strategy.
Stavros, J. & Cole, M. 2013. SOARing towards positive transformation and change. Development Policy Review, 1(1), 10-34.