Strategic Planning Terminology
Vision Statement ‐ A statement that captures the long‐term picture of what the organization wants to become or accomplish. A vision statement must be inspirational, memorable and reflect the desires of those with vested interests. Example: XYZ will be nationally recognized as a top research University in the United States.
Mission Statement ‐ A brief description of a company's fundamental purpose. A mission statement answers the question, "Why do we exist?" Example: XYZ University provides a high quality education, while promoting discovery and innovation.
Value Statement‐ Beliefs that are shared among the stakeholders of an organization. Example: XYZ University values integrity, honesty, openness, personal excellence, constructive self-criticism, continual self-improvement, and mutual respect.
Priority‐ a high-level, inspirational statement about what we would like to be known for or achieve in a specific "mission" area. Strategic priorities need to support both mission and vision statements. Example: Develop interdisciplinary research programs that focus on discovery & innovation. (defines further how XYZ University will be national recognized).
Goal‐ Outcome statements that define what an organization is trying to accomplish both programmatically and organizational. Example: Expand clinical & translational research efforts. (defines further the type of research programs XYZ University would like to grow).
Objective‐ Very precise, time-based, and measurable actions that support the completion of a goal. Example: Hire five new clinician scientists over five years. (defines how XYZ University will grow clinical and translational research).
Indicator‐ A measurable variable (or characteristic) that can be used to determine the degree of adherence to a standard or the level of quality achieved. Example: Amount of clinical research funding. (the measure that will be tracked to determine how XYZ University will know they are successful).
Target‐ defines the magnitude of change for a specific indicator that the organization aspires to achieve during a specific period of time. Example: A 10% increase in clinical funding over five years. (10% over five years is the target that must be reached for XYZ University to know they have been successful).
Benchmark‐ A standard of comparison used for judging performance. Example: the national average for clinical funding across all Universities is X.
Baseline‐ A standard by which things are measured or compared. Example: Current level of clinical research funding at XYZ University.
Action Plan/Project‐ A planned series of actions, tasks or steps designed to achieve an objective or goal. Example: Recruitment plan for the five clinician scientists. (this is where the work really happens!)
NOTE: There is an increase in granularity as you progress from vision to objectives.