New Year’s Goal #1 Strategic Plan


Strategic planning with the team a win/win proposition.

Typically, the thought of creating a strategic plan is daunting and overwhelming. You may consider dividing this project into smaller, bite-size pieces to accomplish this important goal. Read more for valuable statistics, tips on creating a strategic plan and how to involve your team in the process.

Stith Keiser, a dear friend and owner of MyVeterinaryCareer, wrote this about strategic planning and missions;

” Strategic planning starts with developing a fully formed organizational mission. When I first started my business, I remember thinking to myself, ‘I don’t have time to put together a mission statement; I need to make money.’ Contrary to my initial beliefs, studies have shown that businesses that operate with a strategic plan—starting with a mission statement—increase revenue by 10% to 12%. “;whatsyourhiringstrategy

I find that astonishing, 10-12% growth by designing and implementing a strategic plan and mission! Now that you know that and you wish to see increased productivity, client service and improved financial bottom line as you move into 2013, wouldn’t that be a GREAT place to start?

To keep this simple and yet net devalue its importance, let’s divide the strategic plan into three smaller pieces:

  1. CURRENTLY, where are we at?
  2. In the FUTURE, where do we want to be?
  3. HOW are we going to get there?

Where are we at, CURRENTLY?

Begin by reviewing your current mission, vision,  and values statement (M/V).

Mission, describe’s your hospital’s purpose and what you do to accomplish that purpose. I suggest it is concise, short and sweet. You and your team must live it on a daily basis, reciting it and using it as a daily “rudder” for your delivery of quality service and incredible client service.

Values, outlines the  beliefs of the owner AND team. Guiding principles and the way in which you deliver your services. What is your team really committed to?

Secondly, complete a SWOT analysis, the internal and external review of your organization.

  • S=Strengths
  • W=Weaknesses
  • O=Opportunities
  • T=Threats

If you are in need of creating your M/Vision/V, refer to the resources listed at the end of this blog.

Where do you want to be in the FUTURE?

Vision, describes, in a grandiose, big picture way, what your overall scheme for the future looks like. This can be well defined, “out of the box” concept and something to continually strive for. What will your organization look like in 5-10 years.

Sustainable, Competitive Advantage, outlines how you different than your competitors. What makes your team outstanding and offering superior service? What can your organization DO better than any of your competitors?

How are we going to get there?

The MILLION dollar question, figuratively and concretely! This is the primary function of your strategic plan, where the culmination of previous work and identification catapults you and your team into the future, with confidence and goal setting. Now, you create your road map:

  • Objectives, encompass four areas: financial, customer, operational, and people. What can you and your team be doing to achieve your vision in these four categories?
  • Market Opportunities, how can you align your services and marketing with the needs of your clients and their pets? Once you have identified your strengths, how can your team capitalize on those strengths to continue growing relationships in those areas?
  • Short-term goals, typically achieved in 1-3 years. Identify the goals, making them specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely (SMART)
  • Long-term goals, typically 5-10 years, identifying SMART goals.
  • Action items, consider identifying a person or team to complete action items identified in the SMART goals.
  • Measure successes, track the progress of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), measuring beginning and end results along with outcomes.
  • Monitor plan, identify when the coordinator of an action item will give reports and communicate progress, challenges and problem solving.

That is an overview, the basic nuts and bolts for designing a strategic plan and mission. It is time to include your team in a creative, engaging, motivated way in a way in which there is buy-in and follow through. Establishing SMART goals and identifying team members who have the ability to complete and be supported in the progress is imperative.

When you are ready to move forward on designing your Strategic Plan and you have questions, let me know, we can work through it, together.

Links and resources.

  1. Team Satisfaction Pays, Organizational Development for Practice Success, Dr. Carin Smith,
  2. The Five-Step Plan for Creating Personal Mission Statements, Randall S. Hansen, Ph.D.,


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