Darlene D. Bainbridge and Associates, Inc








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Strategic Planning

Your past is important, but as important as it is, it is not nearly as important to your present as the way you see your future.

Dr. Tony Campolo

Success in today’s market is about building a stronger immediate present while, at the same time, shaping the future of the organization. In a traditional business curve, an organization developed a service or product and, if it met consumer needs, the organization worked to maintain it and prosper. In today’s market of continual change and technological advancement, an organization that does not continue to renew its service or product to meet the evolving needs of the customer and market, can suddenly find itself a casualty on the road to the future.

Over the past two decades, the healthcare industry has been besieged with changes that have significantly impacted the way health care is delivered. Technological advancements, managed care, specialization, and regulatory reform have significantly changed and continue to reshape the healthcare industry. Healthcare organizations find themselves searching for ways to deliver high quality, customized services in response to these changes without paying the price associated with high-variety, low volume operations. At the same time, the life cycles for many aspects of healthcare delivery continue to shrink.

Strategic planning in more stable times involved attempting to monitor and improve existing business processes. In dynamic times, such as those we see today, it often involves identifying entirely new services that could position the organization to excel in meeting customer needs and financial objectives as present services die out or decline. Having a clear picture of an organization's present business curve is the first step of a meaningful strategic planning process. If we don't know where we are, it is difficult to determine where you what to be. The next step is identify that desired future curve that stretches the organization in just the right ways to promote growth and effectiveness. Strategic success is about more than just promoting survival.

Today’s healthcare market is a much more competitive environment. Changes in consumer expectations have moved all industries, including health care, into an environment where services are bought, not sold. Organizations that best meet customer demands excel. Changing demands mean that leaders of today can easily find themselves running to keep up tomorrow.

Over the past three decades, healthcare providers have found it much more difficult to maintain market share and to keep their customers happy. For many, their strategic plans are too soft and operationally-oriented. While these types of plans could get the job done when organizations only had to focus on perpetuating the past, the planning of today must be “ a process by which the guiding members of an organization envision its future and develop the necessary procedures and operations to achieve that future”.

Successful strategic planning is characterized by the process of self-examination, the confrontation of difficult choices, and the setting of priorities. It is about moving out of comfort zones and learning to embrace change as a way of life. It is about creating the organization’s future business curve and unleashing the energy of the organization to successfully carry the organization into that future.


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Darlene Bainbridge and Associates, Inc

D.D. Bainbridge & Associates, Inc.
595 Lyndon Center Road - Cuba, NY, 14727 US





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