It is important that your society has in place a year plan in order to ensure you comply with any legislative or regulators requirements, keep up to date with memberships and keep your members informed with a clear plan of what you aim to deliver in the year.
Members are far more inclined to invest time and passion into a society if the board are clear about what they want to deliver from the outset and can show progress in their delivery.
Informing your members in advance of any projects also allows you to source missing skills and resources from among your existing member base as well as giving you more scope when it comes to fundraising.
It is also beneficial for you as a society to regularly review current policies and the constitution or model rules you are operating under to assess whether this need updating or editing.
It is IMPORTANT to remember that as a Community Benefit Society you are required to hold an Annual General Meeting within SIX MONTHS of your financial year end and submit your return (AR30) to the FCA within SEVEN MONTHS of your financial year end.
Failure to hold your AGM and return your accounts to the FCA within the allotted time period could result in prosecution or your society being de-registered.
Strategic planning is an activity that is used to set priorities, focus energy and resources, strengthen operations and ensure that the Board are working toward common goals.
You can use strategic planning to establish agreement around intended outcomes/results and assess and adjust the societies direction in response to a changing environment.
It is a disciplined effort that produces fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what your society is, who it serves, what it does, and why it does it, with a focus on the future.
Effective strategic planning articulates not only where your society is going and the actions needed to make progress, but also how it will know if it is successful.
Where Do We Start?
There are many different frameworks and methodologies for strategic planning and management.
While there are no absolute rules regarding the right framework, most follow a similar pattern and have common attributes.
- Analysis or assessment; where an understanding of the current environments is developed
- Strategy formulation; where strategic objectives are developed, and a basic strategic plan is documented
- Strategy execution; where the high-level plan is translated into operational objectives and actions
- Evaluation; where there is ongoing refinement and evaluation of performance and project delivery
It is important that you as a trust identify all the stakeholders who have an interest in or a role to play in the success of your society.
Think of groupings of individuals or other organisations – with whom your trust has or could have a relationship.