Strategic plan for academic research institution

A biomedical research institute within a large clinical organization had encountered difficulties in developing and communicating a strategic plan. An initial plan had been developed internally, but key members of the parent organization’s board and senior management were skeptical of the value of research and were concerned about the costs of the institute and of the proposed strategy.

Health Business Group supported a strategic planning committee comprising parent organization board members, researchers, senior management and outside experts in the development and selection of strategic options and the creation of a model to project the financial implications of the different choices. We prepared for committee meetings by researching the funding environment (including NIH priorities and the emergence of new federal sources as part of the Affordable Care Act), benchmarking comparable organizations, and preparing discussion materials that could be comprehended well by a committee with very diverse backgrounds and outlooks. Initial interactions of the committee members were sometimes awkward and uncomfortable, but over time we were able to facilitate a common understanding of the strategic situation and to produce a robust plan.

The final product was a strategic plan and financial model that were strongly endorsed by institute researchers, senior management, and the board of the parent organization.