Take Control of your Plan

May 1, 2020

In these unprecedented times, it is really important to have a plan. Realize that your plan may go to pieces before it gets executed, but have a plan nevertheless. Who planned to have a worldwide shut down for months?

Without a plan, you are simply adrift. You have no destination and therefore you will have no idea when you reach your goal. In this time of uncertainty, I would suggest that you focus on mini-plans (i.e. what are we going to do in the next week/next month rather than on an entire year).

Taking Small Bites

Planning for anything can be overwhelming. Sometimes it is difficult to even fathom where to begin. I have a link to a document that I created that is a very simple spreadsheet that should help you in your planning. I’m not saying that this is a panacea of a solution, but rather a tool that should help.

I have often said that anything worth doing is worth measuring. Maybe you need to measure your “moves management” (i.e. solicit at least X donors per week). Maybe another activity would be reporting on past donations (nothing says we value your contribution more than showing how that last contribution was put to use).

In any moves management program, you need to decide what is true moves management as opposed to what is just good communication practice. In the moves management theory, your actions must move the agenda forward. While expressing birthday wishes to a donor is always a great idea, it is not what I would consider moving the bar.

The deliverables

This is by far the most important part of the worksheet. What will be measured? How will you know that you have accomplished the work? This worksheet is tactical so having a deliverable like ending homelessness is probably not realistic and achievable. I am a numbers guy, so if I were to canvass 10 donors per week, I could easily evaluate that metric.

Revise the Plan

As I mentioned earlier, plans are not written in stone, and priorities change (exceedingly quickly as evidenced during this pandemic). Be prepared to scrap your plan (or at least rewrite it). That is not a bad thing. Just ensure that when you create your revised plan, you keep in mind the deliverables.

Sometimes the best-laid plans never come to fruition. It may be bad timing. Perhaps it is bad leadership. Conceivably, it may be a bad plan. Do not despair and go back to the drawing board!

Until next week, folks.