Business Plans and Strategic Plans

The two plans should have appropriate connections in all of the important areas, such as: governance, program, human resources, finance, fund raising, marketing/community outreach, administration and other areas. However, where the broader plan leaves off, the operational plan will then provide more detailed analysis about important areas of the agency’s work, such as an analysis of each program, its key activities, target audience, achievements and outcomes and cost. And, whenever possible, the return on investment (ROI), even if the ROI is social and community-based over against investment of funds. It would take a detailed look at both the finances and budgeting process, and fund raising. And, it would be appropriate for a Business Plan to outline steps that an agency would take in the event that certain funding is cut.
One should be able to cut up a good Business Plan into distinct areas, which would then be assigned to appropriate departments. Whereas the strategic focus is broad, the operational plan drills down into important core areas of the agency to provide a roadmap for work in each of the departments.
The board and chief executive coordinate the implementation of the Strategic Plan. And it is the chief executive, board president and department managers that coordinate the work of the Business Plan.
When the operational plan it is clear, focused, and implemented with effective leadership, it drives the broader, goal oriented plan forward. If the Mission and Vision are the heart and soul of an agency, then the Strategic Plan is the head, and, the Business Plan represents the arms and the legs. Each has a very distinct and important role and set of responsibilities.
Each type of planning has an important function. When planning, with whichever type of plan, be clearly focused and outline carefully the purpose and intended outcomes of the planning work.

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