Strategic Plan

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Running Header: Strategic Plan Part II

Strategic Plan Part II – Environmental Analysis and Setting Strategic Goals

HCS 586

March 5, 2012

Strategic Plan Part II – Environmental Analysis and Setting Strategic Goals

Strategic planning can dictate the success of any organization if properly planned as well as the failure of an organization if not implemented as planned. Strategic planning is all about making choices. It is a process designed to support leaders in being intentional about their goals and methods. Simply stated, strategic planning is a management tool, and like any management tool, it is used for one purpose only—to help an organization do a better job. This portion of the strategic plan will explain why an environmental analysis is important, the major benefits of competitive analysis, economic, legal, and regulatory issues that may affect the strategic plan, and information from the SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis findings of Visiting Angels Assisted Living Organization. Environmental Analysis

In terms of organizations and strategic planning, an environmental scan/analysis involves considering the factors that will influence the direction and goals of Visiting Angles Organization. And, it includes consideration of both present and future factors that might affect the organization, since, of course, the main objective is planning for the future, not just the present (Swayne, Duncan, & Ginter, 2008). The directors of Visiting Angels have always held the philosophy that they are in business to provide the best care possible to seniors as well as others who need in home care while giving total respect to the care giving staff. It's their belief that their network of franchised Visiting Angels home care agencies should have the very best in training and support so that elderly clients will receive top quality care wherever the need exists. That's why Visiting Angels is "America's Choice in Homecare". Many planners prefer to start strategic planning by clarifying the mission, vision and/or values of the organization (Hunger & Wheelen, 2007). Planners of Visiting Angels prefer to start by taking a wide look around the external environment of the organization and also the inside of the organization, and then clarifying/strategizing what the organization should do as a result of what the planners find. Benefits of Competitive Analysis

A competitive analysis involves looking at those that compete in the same market place, and using information about competitors to identify where your strengths are relative to those competitors. One of the principles for becoming competitive is to leverage your strengths with respect to competitors, and minimize your weaknesses with respect to competitors. A competitive analysis is really a subset of doing an environmental scan (Hunger & Wheelen, 2007). Part of Visiting Angels Organization competitive analysis is to identify and visit competitors and develop relationships where feasible.

Visiting Angels Assisted Living Organization is a bonded, licensed and insured franchise that offers them major benefits of competitive analysis. All Visiting Angels senior home care agencies are required to be bonded and insured. In states where licensing is required it is highly executed in the policy that all key personnel have the appropriate license that permits "hands-on" care. This gives patients the peace of mind that a trustworthy caregiver will be in their loved one's home. Economic, Legal, and Regulatory Issues

For an organization to grow and prosper it must be able to anticipate, take account of and deal with changes in its environment that include legal, regulatory, and economic issues (Ghamdi, 2005). Strategic planning helps the organization to monitor these changes and to adjust its activities accordingly. Legal and regulatory issues affect the development of a strategic plan because they define formal and informal rules...
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