It’s that time of year when organizations are closing out 2015 and looking toward 2016 with commitment and determination, paving the way for additional growth. More often than not, credit unions are performing annual organizational evaluations and developing annual strategic plans. In the past, bi-annual strategic plans were enough, but in today’s competitive and ever-changing marketplace, it’s more important than ever to have a solid strategic direction year over year, or at the very least, to monitor results and adjust your goals annually. Before you embark on the strategic planning process, consider completing the exercises below (Hint: this is a good exercise for your management team):
1. Determine the value of having a strategic plan. Strategy means different things to different organizations.
2. Decide whether you need a long-range plan or a shorter-term plan.
Annual plans aren’t for everyone. Perhaps you’re organization has a long-range plan to expand into new markets, but you know this process will take longer than 12 months. A 3-5 year strategic plan may be better suited for companies whose goals are of wider scope. But don’t lose sight of managing annual performance towards your goals.
3. Establish responsibility and accountability for plan implementation.
4. Elect to choose an outside facilitator/mediator or use an internal resource for your planning session. (Hint: There are benefits to both.)
Exercise (choose one):
5. Determine what your strategic plan should include.
6. A Year in review: How did your organization perform in 2015?
7. Establish how you will track the results of your strategic planning objectives.
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Email your completed exercises to info@empower-strategies for free strategic planning analysis and recommendations.
If you’ve gotten this far, you clearly recognize the need for a strategic plan (a crucial step in becoming a catalyst for creating buy-in and commitment from your team). After completing the above exercises, your leadership team will be ready to embark on creating your organization’s strategic journey.
Stay tuned for the Strategic Planning Guide, Part II: DIY Strategic Plan