2021 - 2026

Working Document Strategic Plan


The Mission of the Putnam County Museum is to collect, preserve and interpret the natural, cultural and historical heritage of our county and its people.

Our Strengths

  • Good physical location, easy access, and ample parking

  • Experienced and motivated board

  • Executive director and staff

  • Dedicated volunteers and contributors

  • New opportunities-owning the entire building

  • Exhibit quality-variety

  • Financially more secure-PCCP endowments

  • Improved communication-newsletters


Our Weaknesses

  • Volunteers needed

  • Active working committees

  • Awareness of museum’s presence throughout the county

  • Improving outdoor spaces and surrounding areas

  • Technology-video offerings

  • Marketing –printed materials


  • Owning entire facility

  • Exhibits and programs representative of the county

  • Educating public

  • Working committees

  • Integration of technology

  • Improvement of outdoor spaces


  • Small cadre of volunteers-burnout

  • Limited membership

  • Exhibit variety

  • Unknown public perception

  • Covid-19

  • Limited funding for new development


What is the public perception of the Putnam County Museum?

  • Growing number of exhibits

  • Varied public perception boring and stuffy vs. great place for local history

  • Well established community entity

  • Awareness growing every day 

  • “I’ve never been there”


How do we want to be known?

  • Accessible to a variety of diverse groups

  • Repository of collections/exhibits/educational history and preservation of Putnam County

  • A hub for inclusive cultural and historical interests

  • A welcoming, safe space and place

  • A place that recounts our county history and heritage

  • High quality exhibits, programming, communication, and meeting space

  • A place for small groups or families to celebrate their histories


What challenges do we need to overcome to be successful?

  • Expanding membership

  • Always on the out-look for new and unique programs and exhibits

  • Perception that the museum is not an interesting place to visit

  • Financial means to realize our vision


What should our top priorities be in the next 3-5 years?

  • Curb appeal

  • Videos

  • Developing a plan for the newly purchased portion of the building-architect

  • Creating more hands-on opportunities for all ages, but especially children


2021-2026 Strategic Goals


Finance Goal:

Maintain and improve our financial stability to help ensure the long-term existence of the organization.


Governance Goal:

To organize, review and adjust policy while maintaining a dedicated and interested board.


Membership Goal:

Promoting the museum to increase renewals and new membership.


Programming Goal:

Provide diverse exhibits and programs that represent the county, history and culture.



Promote the museum to increase community awareness of museum activity and vibrancy.



Governance 2021-2026


GOAL:  Assure a cogent and competent execution of the organization’s mission through the ongoing recruitment and training of volunteers, the active work of committees,  regular review of  policy compliance, and the periodic review of the Museum’s goals and objectives.


Objective:  To have a list or potential Board and Committee members to help assure the effective functioning of the organization.


     Strategy:  Have clear descriptions of expectations for people engaging in the work of the organization.

      Strategy:  Work with staff to provide periodic training for all new Board and committee members.     


Objective:  To help assure that the Board and committees are operating in a way that is consistent with the museum’s goals and policies.


     Strategy:  Annual self-assessment of the Board and Committees to insure adequate numbers and resources to achieve the goals of the organization’s Comprehensive Plan.


Objective:  To provide a first step clearing house for needed changes in Museum policies and goals.


     Strategy:  Act as a repository for suggestions and issues identified by the Board, standing committees and staff.


     Strategy:  Review and explore such suggestions and issues.  If the need for changes and modifications are identified, they will be taken first to the Executive Committee for discussion.


     Strategy:  Help to ensure that the Board does a review and takes such occasion to update its comprehensive plan and by-laws at least every five years.



Finance 2021 - 2026 


Finance Committee: Maintain and improve our financial stability to help ensure the long term existence of the organization. 


Financial Management: 

1. Create an annual budget. 

2. Review with the Treasurer and Director the status of the budget every quarter. 

3. Monitor projected cash flow needs 6 months out, each quarter. 

4. Proactivity, anticipate and manage shortfalls. 


1. Create a compelling case for annual fund support, in addition to membership. 

2. Continue to build the endowment and increase the awareness of its importance to long-term sustainability. 

3. Continue to pursue NAP credits. 

4. Organize targeted fund-raising opportunities for special projects. 

5. Seek and apply for appropriate grants that will be beneficial to the Museum.




Membership 2021-2026



Membership Goal: Promote the museum to increase renewals and new membership.     


Objective I:  Engage artifact donors and Founding Family exhibitors in membership and the work of the Museum.


  1.  Consider a quarterly “new objects day” where artifacts donated during that time period are on special display and donors are recognized in a meaningful way (in conjunction with Exhibits Committee).

  2.  Educate current and potential members about the collaborative and cooperative relationship of donations (both physical and monetary) by including an education article in the Newsletter.

  3. Offer free newsletter to donor/ exhibitors and include them in the annual membership recruitment mailing. Also discussed potential free 1-year membership. 

Objective II: Engage Board Members as Ambassadors to increase new memberships and renewals.


        1.  Provide each Board member with extra newsletters to distribute personally to potential members.

         2.  Provide opportunity for Board members to add handwritten notes to membership renewal letters thanking members for past support. 

          3.  Provide training to Board members on strategies for engaging corporate memberships. 


Objective III: Engage community to become/ stay members. 


  1. Utilize “tabling” opportunities at community events to engage the public in conversation about their own collections (for “Putnam County Collects”) or their families’ history in Putnam County (for potential “Founding Family” exhibits). 

  2. Increase outreach by distributing Quarterly Newsletters more widely by identifying other key sites beyond the two public libraries. If a brochure is developed, that can also be planted at multiple locations.

  3. Encourage commemorating special events; e.g. Christmas, birthday, memorializing or honoring a loved one, with gift memberships or by underwriting exhibit costs.

  4. Plan annual meeting with light refreshments at no cost to attendees.

  5. Hold Holiday Party as a paid/ ticketed event open to all. 

  6. Plan Open Houses to view before and after renovation of new space. Include lapsed members on the invitation list.

Objective IV: Simplify the membership structure


  1. All levels receive the same benefits: newsletter subscription, 10% off giftshop, invitation to free annual meeting.

  2. Revised tiers of membership: Friend $25, Keepsake $50, Artifact $100, Collectible $250, Treasure $500, Heirloom $1000, Patron +

Measurable Outcomes:

  1. Membership retention

  2. Membership growth

  3. Attendance at events




Exhibits / Programs 2021-2026

Goal: Provide diverse exhibits and programs that represent the county history and culture.

  1. Objective: Create and maintain long range planning calendar for exhibits and programs 


Strategy: Have 12 months of Exhibits/Programs planned out

Tactic: Every meeting review and discuss planned Exhibits/Programs 

Tactic: Coordinate with Communication through marketing for publicity and other committees as needed 


  1. Objective: Develop list of potential exhibit topics for future exhibits


Strategy: Review the list of items from the permanent collection.

Tactic: Review permanent collection items biannually.

Strategy: Maintain list of potential exhibitors for rotating loaned exhibits (Art Walk, Founding Families, County Collects)

Tactic: Seek potential exhibitors for loaned exhibits


  1. Objective: Review exhibits on display biannually


Strategy: Determine and advise on when to rotate a permanent exhibit for diversity and refreshed feel. 


  1. Objective: Provide educational programs to spotlight exhibits 


Strategy: Hold in-house exhibit opening/open house with scheduled speaker every other month

Tactic: Secure donor/lender or other speaker for loaned exhibits

Tactic: Coordinate with Communication Committee for promotion of programs


     5.  Objective: Maintain exhibits within community 


Strategy: Review Community Exhibits (courthouse, etc.) on a quarterly basis

Tactic: Maintain a list of potential exhibit opportunities,

Measurable Outcomes:

Program Attendance

Monthly Attendance


Communications 2021-2026

To promote the museum to increase community awareness of museum activity and vibrancy.

Objective:  Keep our audience informed of exhibits, events and projects.

Strategy:  Create press releases for area media outlets  

Strategy:  Create informative posts on social media, track engagements

Strategy:  Program appropriate messages on the highway sign

Strategy:  Publicize projects, exhibits, events, etc. in the newsletter

Strategy:  Public speaking with area organizations such as Rotary, Kiwanis, etc.

 Objective:  Engage the public, create ownership in the life of the museum.

Strategy:  Ellicit public input and help on research and identification.

Strategy:  Ask public for loans of objects for exhibit.

Strategy:  Ask public to share stories

 Objective:  Produce and distribute a quarterly newsletter

Strategy:  Build relationships with members of the community in order to secure

 writers, photographers, and researchers

Strategy:  Place newsletters in accessible businesses, public facilities, schools, etc. throughout the county.

Objective:  Advertise as appropriate

Strategy:  Seek funding from the Putnam County Convention and Visitors Bureau

Strategy:  Provide information for PCCVB efforts

Strategy:  Participate in Chamber of Commerce directory, Discover Putnam County Magazine, other publications and websites

Strategy:  Maintain Google About Your Business presence.


Measurable Outcomes:

Social Media Metrics  

Feedback form for newsletter

Track responses for loaned objects

We are open! Call or email today to make an appointment, or book a tour with museum staff.  

(765) 653-8419


The Museum is a 501(C)(3) nonprofit organization, supported by membership dues and donations

Putnam County Logo with Tagline Light Gr


Putnam County Museum • 1105 North Jackson Street • Greencastle Indiana 46135 • 765.653.8419

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