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Engaging Faculty in Strategic Planning. Dr. John Robert Dew The University of Alabama. Engaging the faculty at the College and Department level. UA has a strategic plan for the university as a whole.

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Engaging Faculty in Strategic Planning

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Engaging Faculty inStrategic Planning

Dr. John Robert Dew

The University of Alabama

Engaging the faculty at the College and Department level.

  • UA has a strategic plan for the university as a whole.

  • Challenge is to engage faculty in developing strategies that excite them and are aligned with the institution’s strategic goals.

  • Blitz build the plan.

Seven step strategic planning process.

  • Preparation

  • Reflection

  • Visioning

  • Prioritizing

  • Action Planning

  • Implement

  • Re-Assess

Preparation phase:

  • Work with Dean or Chair to identify meaningful data.

  • Collect and distribute data to faculty for their review.

  • Encourage faculty to read the UA strategic plan.


  • Working together as a whole group, the faculty develop a time line to capture the history of the College or department.

  • Working together, the faculty identify what they consider to be the program’s strengths, weaknesses, threats, and opportunities.


  • Imagine it is 7 years in the future.

  • The College/Department is being recognized as the best of its type in the nation.

  • Describe this future state.

  • Staying in the future, describe what we did over the past 7 years to get there.


  • Work with the list of actions that would have been taken over the past seven years.

  • Nominal Group Technique.

  • Discuss the implications of the NGT exercise.

  • Let it soak in.

Develop Action Plans:

  • Organize the high priority actions into categories. (Research, teaching, outreach, professional growth)

  • Identify what steps will be taken, who will be responsible, and completion dates.

  • Use as a drum beat.


  • Most actions have turned out to be within the sphere of influence of the faculty.

  • Many actions led to the development of creative alliances with other groups.

  • Keep reviewing progress in faculty meetings.

  • Inform your friends.


  • Most strategic plans have run their course within three years.

  • New circumstances require us to constantly re-assess to either adjust, hold the course, or set new goals.

  • Everything changes, so don’t think that one plan is the ultimate cure-all.

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