Framing the strategic process
Traditional Vision and Mission statements are long strings of words and sentences and often developed before key strategies have been developed. While that may be the result of the planning process, another model is to begin with a few shorter phrases and challenge various constituency groups to consider a tighter, more focused approach that best describe the overall objective for UTC.
Vision: Statement about where UTC is headed; how things will look if successful.
Mission: Statement about purpose; it explains why UTC exists, what UTC is supposed to do.
Craft the core values of UTC. These points assist define the drivers that will lead the university toward success. These anchors support the Vision and Mission statements and the commitments to achieving excellence.
Lessons to be considered:
- 3 or 4 key drivers may be adequate.
- 5 years is a planning horizon; 3 years is a more practical implementation period.
- Improved outreach to broader audiences by sharing strategic planning updates at least twice a year.
- Framework for State of University speeches.
- Improved dashboard that is easily accessed online and tracks progress toward the strategic goals.
- Drive the plan throughout UTC so each College/ department embraces the overarching strategies.
- Align the Vision, mission and core values with the implementation and communication objectives. As an example, what is an engaged metropolitan university and how is it applied? The answer may be found through actions that better define the words. Is there another way to state the UTC vision and mission: driving success for students, for the community, and for improved higher education results. Is the focus on achieving excellence that impacts our students, our academic programs, our teaching and our engagement with community partnerships?