Sunday, September 27, 2009

Tips for Successful Action Planning

Action Planning refers to the steps, tasks and processes involved in implementing sustained change at an organization based on employee survey results and needs to be the follow-up step after (1) an employee survey has been conducted at an organization and (2) the employee survey data has been collected, analyzed and summarized.To ensure successful Action Planning, you should :

Identify the key issues at your organization that need attention and set goals to address these issues -
What are the potential causes of the problems at your organization?
What are your organization's key opportunities for improvement?
What changes can you implement immediately?
What are your medium- and longer-term goals?

Establish a series of individual action items -
What specific action steps will you put in place to achieve each of your goals?
What is your plan of action?

Communicate the plan to your employees -
How will you let employees know what your plan is and that the plan came about after listening to their input?

Implement the Action Plan and institute regular follow ups -
How will you put your plan in place? How will you know if it is effective?

While the planning stage is important, the real key to make action planning successful is ACTION. The implementation of Action Plans is critical if you want to see improvements in overall results at your organization. Action Planning should be conducted in a timely manner. On the one hand, you should not react so quickly when you get your employee survey results that you cannot give careful consideration to the planning process but, at the same time, you need to avoid taking so much time as to lose momentum. It is essential to ensure that your employees do not believe that their participation in the survey process was in vain. Furthermore, the best organizations communicate their progress and successes to all employees at every step of the process. Not only are Action Plans implemented but employees also know that the actions taken link directly back to the results of the employee survey. This approach helps to ensure that employees clearly recognize the value of participating in an employee survey.