Frequently Asked Questions
Why a vision process now?
In the last few years, the community has celebrated big wins and increased pride. This positive momentum has driven people to ask, “What’s next for region and our community?” At the same time, many community leaders were watching other communities’ vision processes and learning more about their successful outcomes. The time appeared right to ask the region what it wants the future to hold for this and the next generation.
What kind of momentum have we had?
People have noticed a new energy developing in the region through a wide variety of efforts including increased development, new jobs, investment and amplified local pride.
Why do regions have vision plans?
Successful regions and communities listen to their residents to develop a vision that is based on community input and creates a shared outcome. Much like successful organizations and businesses, a vision and action plan guide decisions and focus efforts. Regional examples include Des Moines and Omaha.
What is the anticipated outcome?
The process will create a 10-year vision and action plan for the region based on community input. These tools will help us focus our efforts and identify priorities based on community input.
What is the process?
This visual provides a good overview. Based on discussions, WSU’s Public Policy and Management Center developed a custom process in February with a launch in March. There are three primary steps: Listen, Focus and Share.
- Listen – Spring/Summer 2018
- Host DIY and facilitated focus groups, launch online survey, social media
- Focus - Summer 2018
- Research existing data and plans, conduct interviews
- Share - Fall 2018
- Report community vision, priorities and action plan
Who is involved?
As many people as possible from throughout the region. People can have input to the vision process through focus groups, an online survey following the focus groups plus ongoing social media. They can also help by volunteering to gather input.
Organizations involved with the Vision Team are planning on sharing the opportunity to provide input with their stakeholder groups such as employees, members, donors, boards, etc. More than 90 groups have signed on to help shepherd and fund the process and to ensure participation and help create and share the final action plan.
Who’s leading the effort?
Four volunteer co-chairs stepped forward who have been very involved in community efforts:
- Aaron Bastian, President of Fidelity Bank
- Debbie Gann, VP Communications & Public Affairs of Spirit AeroSystems
- Scott Schwindaman, President & CEO of Lubrication Engineers
- Juston White, Executive Director of Boys and Girls Clubs of South Central Kansas
What is the Vision Team and what do they do?
These are the more than 90 organizations that to date have committed to help shepherd and fund the process with more expressing interest. They include small and large businesses, non-profit organizations, civic and regional organizations and community groups. Scholarships have been made available through the generosity of many businesses with a purpose of having a dynamic range of voices represented.
Is this regional?
Yes, because like any team, our region is stronger when we work together. Through collaboration, we are able to leverage the strengths of our region and solve challenges, together. Many residents, visitors and businesses often work and live across multiple municipal boundaries. For example, a person may live in one community and work in another. Or a non-profit may deliver services across several counties.
Why is it called Project Wichita?
When “Wichita” is used in this context, it’s the regional geographic descriptor. Much like Des Moines is the primary geographic descriptor of that region in southwestern Iowa or Kansas City being used to describe the urban center, suburbs and surrounding communities. All counties and cities in regions play important roles in supporting the overall economic strength through different strategies and unique contributions.
How is this different from Visioneering Wichita?
There are several ways in which this is a different process for a different time. First, Visioneering was based mostly on large, “town-hall” meetings and this process listens to people where they are at different times in multiple ways. Second, we have the opportunity to reach many more people through new advances in technology, which has exploded since Visioneering Wichita 15 years ago. These advances allow an increased ability to reach all audiences and communities. Third, this vision process is planned and implemented during momentum, rather than economic crisis. Another difference is that Project Wichita is funded primarily (80 percent) by the private sector rather than the public sector.
Did Visioneering Wichita efforts work?
Visioneering Wichita had many positive outcomes, including the founding of Young Professionals of Wichita; an intentional focus on downtown development as a regional economic driver; City-to-City visits to learn from others; regional efforts; creation of Wichita Business Coalition on Health Care; and a focus on technical training and talent attraction.
How do I or my organization get involved?
I have a different question, who can I ask?
Contact Evan Rosell at (316) 500.6650 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.