Planning & Doing
Blog: From the Director
Posted Tuesday, January 31, 2012
One of the MHSAA’s counterpart organizations in another state recently asked to see the business plans of other statewide high school associations. Some of the states supplied their detailed budgets, but most had nothing to offer.
Of course, a budget is a much different thing than a business plan. A budget is built more on past performance, while a business plan looks more to the potential of future problems and opportunities. A business plan is much more than numbers.
Since 2007 we’ve been using a “Mission Action Plan” (MAP) at the MHSAA. It was developed to deal with the opportunities and obstacles of three powerful trends: (1) growth of non-school youth sports programs; (2) expansion of educational alternatives to traditional neighborhood schools; and (3) proliferating technology.
While not a typical business plan or a classic “strategic plan,” the “MAP” has become increasingly useful to point the way for the MHSAA both in terms of program and finance. The MAP states a single “Overarching Purpose;” it identifies four “Highest Priority Goals;” and it lists four multi-faceted “Current Strategic Emphases,” many of which have quantifiable performance targets, including financial goals.
Next to each Current Strategic Emphasis are two boxes. The first is checked if we’ve gotten started, and the second is checked when we’ve completed the task or are operating at the level we had established as our goal. At this point, every MAP strategy has been launched, but only a portion have earned the second checkmark.
Quite efficiently, the MAP keeps us both strategic and businesslike without the formality of purer forms of strategic or business plans.