Mark Kwandrans, PMP March 2012
Since summer appears to be here to stay, I thought I’d describe the process that your Board uses for our annual strategic planning, which starts in summer and extends into the fall. By following this process, we help ensure that our strategic and operating plans are the best that we can make them.
We start by examining our mandates. What are we required to do, either by PMI or by governmental bodies? Then we identify our stakeholders. There are a lot of different groups that are interested in us (members, PMPs, employers, PMI, the general public, non-member project managers, etc). We need to consider as many as possible when creating a strategy. Next we look at our mission and vision (you can find these on our website). Do they make sense, given our mandates and our stakeholders? Then we conduct a SWOC analysis, looking at our internal strengths and weaknesses and our external opportunities and challenges. These help identify and constrain what we’ll be able to do. This is done in conjunction with an examination of our distinctive core competencies. These are the things that are not only central to the success of the organization but also help the Chapter add more public value than alternative providers do. Following that, we determine our strategic issues. These are the fundamental policy choices that affect our mandates, missions, services, users, structure, and processes. Once we’ve identified our issues, we formulate our strategies. These strategies address our issues, and help us achieve our mission. Next we create a vision of the chapter of the future. How do we think the chapter will look in 3-5 years? Based on that vision, and on our strategies, we develop annual operating plans. These plans describe the yearly programs and monthly milestones that will, taken as a whole, help us to become the Chapter we envision. The operating plans, with their corresponding budget, tell us the resources (volunteers) that we’ll need to execute our plans. It is this determination to do more than last year that drives our continual desire for more volunteers! Throughout the year, we review our actual results against our plans and determine whether anything needs to be fine-tuned. We try to stay on track, and never let anything get too far from plan.
And here you probably thought we just played it by ear!