Shelter from the Storm: weathering financial challenges

The Chronicle gave some advice today to colleges on how strategic planning can help buffer institutions from the effects of uncertainties. Here’s the advice, condensed:

  • create strategic plans faster and have them cover a shorter period. Instead of taking a year to develop a 5-year plan, spend 4 months developing a 3-year plan.
  • make sure your strategic plans provide clear actions which reflect core principles and particular goals.
  • practice flexibility regularly: refine your actions or change your strategies annually while retaining your commitment to your core principles or goals
  • have cash on hand–a million or so would do it for a small liberal arts college. Liquidity also promotes being opportunistic–the ability to partner with vendors, take advantage of a new technology, etc.

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