Letter from the Dean

Dean DaubertLetter from the Dean

Since my arrival, I‘ve spoken of the importance of creating a shared vision for organizational change.  In preparation for challenging times, a thorough, well-crafted strategic focus is imperative not only for success, but survival.  I am delighted to share that CAFNR launched its strategic planning process during a daylong retreat of the CAFNR leadership team on Nov. 28, 2017.

Our planning process will be intensive, requiring participation from faculty, staff, students, alumni, emeriti, and other university partners. You will be asked to contribute your big ideas – audacious ideas that will create a distinct college among our peer groups. In addition, the strategic planning guiding coalition will travel Missouri to engage feedback from thought leaders, including our alumni, commodity friends, legislators, and regulatory partners. The “walk” will be transparent and visible through this web portal where all dimensions and data gathered through the process will be available to CAFNR communities.

This transformational strategic process is charged to coordinate six strong divisions and a state-wide system of agricultural research centers into a distinct college with a shared mission and purpose to tackle our self-determined grand challenges.

  • A good strategic plan is a mission-critical tool in times of scarcity and competition.
    Leadership is survival. A thorough, well-crafted strategic plan is designed to lead members of a complex organization like ours in good times and navigate rough waters as they occur. Our plan will detail goals, priorities, and activities over an extended period of time. Metrics will be incorporated to help us identify course corrections as needed to achieve the college’s important goals.
  • A good strategic plan uses modern tools and thinking to anticipate and respond quickly to unpredictable events.
    The days of “setting and forgetting” are over. Gathering intelligence with today’s tools is the only way to stay ahead of our competition or be prepared for untoward events and to grow and be successful. These tools help CAFNR anticipate and prepare rather than be reactive to events.
  • A good strategic plan is a beacon for leadership and differentiation.
    The plan will provide the basis for enhancing CAFNR’s reputation and drive increased funding and resources for faculty, staff, and students. A good strategic plan takes into consideration a variety of aspects in order to be relevant and actionable. We must consider the skills and capabilities of CAFNR, and the needs of all of its key constituents.
  • A good strategic plan is the best way for CAFNR to serve the citizens of Missouri.
    Agriculture is the number one industry in the state and must be protected. A successful College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources ensures a successful state, and a good strategic plan is the roadmap for that success. It’s delivering on the important promise of being a land-grant institution.

Putting together a comprehensive, well thought out plan is a challenging task given all of the elements that must be taken into consideration for preparing and being successful in the future. With other MU planning initiatives also underway, our CAFNR process will be informed by those efforts and seamlessly align outcomes. CAFNR has called upon experts in the field to craft a differentiating, forward-looking plan that will best serve the College, University and state of Missouri. We are delighted to announce that PulsePoint Group was selected from a competitive pool to facilitate our year-long planning effort.

I am thrilled to be launching this transformational experience for our college and to be working alongside you as we drive CAFNR to distinction!


Christopher R. Daubert
Vice Chancellor & Dean
College of Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources
University of Missouri