Strategic Budget Planning

Are You Ready for Budget Planning Season?

It’s almost budget planning season again. That means you are probably making plans for planning season. That’s a really horrible pun, but the message is clear. Nothing happens very well at a credit union without planning. With that said, let’s look at a few elements to include in your strategic budget planning.

1. Communication.

Once a strategic plan is approved by your board of directors, it is up to leadership and upper management to make sure the plan is carried out. The best way to ensure this is with consistency. If your staff sees you carrying out elements of your strategic plan consistently, they will be more likely to follow through on them as well. Your consistency communicates the importance of each element. And while staff meetings, emails, and memos are important means of communication, consistency via management action is the most effective communicator.

2. Delegate.

This item goes hand in hand with communication. Delegate certain elements of your strategic plan to staff members, accordingly. This makes execution extremely efficient. Of course, you need to make sure your staff is empowered to make decisions if you delegate the reigns of power. Otherwise, your plan will be suffocated through micromanagement. Staff meetings are excellent vehicles for distilling information and clarifying any items that might be vague. Just be sure your staff feels like they can ask questions without fear of consequence. Create an open, honest culture, consider vendors that have been in business for a while, and delegate. Then watch your plan take shape.

3. Never Stop.

The whole purpose of a strategic plan is forward motion. To that end, your organization should never stop moving in that direction. It might be helpful to create some sort of online portal, so board members can give input and begin the decision-making process for “housekeeping” or other process-related items. This way, they can give input beforehand, saving face-to-face meeting time for high-value issues and priority concerns.

Addressing these elements before you begin strategic budget planning will do more than just empower your staff and management; it will enlarge your entire credit union. As your credit union grows, things will change. Processes will be modified, new positions will be created, and increased productivity will be expected. That is how you know your strategic plan is working. And don’t worry, either. We will be with you every step of the way with safe, compliant forms and disclosures so your credit union can keep planning and growing. Connect with us for a strategic marketing plan customized for your credit union goals and demographics.