A discussion board (DB) primarily is a nonsynchronous communication tool which allows individuals online posting of the comments or administering questions (Williams, 2012). In this regard, a discussion board allows other individual members of discussion board to not only read the comment/question posted, but also to respond to the same with their own remarks, thereby creating a thread of conversation. In this paper, the topic of discussion is commenting on the characteristic of assisted living facility and how well a strategic plan might be implemented in such an organization. This is a discussion in response to a scenario where, working as an admission coordinator for an assisted living facility that has just enacted a 5-year strategic plan, I have experienced no communication of the components of the plan to any departmental section. Instead, the institution’s management has chosen to include only senior-level management thereby neglecting the other stakeholders.
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In my opinion, the above implementation approach is not appropriate or even good-based on the characteristic nature of assisted living facility. An assisted living facility is usually a spacious residential area where people with special needs such as seniors with disabilities or elderly people are normally provided with personal and medical care (Malichar, Renwanz & Flores, 2011). This facility therefore offers recreational and social activities to these special groups helping to bond each of them as belonging to one big family. This enables the group not to feel the absence of their loved ones. In addition, these special groups require 24-hour management of daily activities such as grooming, preparing of meals, cleaning, and medication, which are only carried out effectively due to department coordination but not because of administration at the senior management level (Malichar, Renwanz & Flores, 2011). It is in the same effort that any management approach taken to implement any strategic plan should incorporate all the departments to enable them to be accurately sensitized on the plan. This will enable all the departments to effectively take part in the implementation of that specific strategic plan.
Based on the implementation approach taken by the management of assisted living facility, the enacted 5-year strategic plan will not be an effective strategy. Strategy can only be effective if it is deeply understood and shared by all the organization’s stakeholders (Rhodes, 2010). For instance, Genghis Khan’s Mongols were able to defeat far large armies since each soldier internalized their battle strategies. Thus they were able to make correct tactical decisions without being directly supervised (Rhodes, 2010). It is in the same way the enacted 5-year strategic plan can only be effective if it is accurately understood by each department and employee in order for them to feel the necessity of implementing the same without being directly supervised.
Therefore, a change in the implementation of the 5-year strategic plan of the assisted facility is needed for it to be successful. I could do this in various ways. First, for the strategic plan to be implemented successfully, I would ensure that the assisted facility or organization avoids the common strategic plan implementation mistakes by communicating the plan to front-line employees. This will enable them not to work in the dark. Additionally, I would ensure that the organization reaches out to all stakeholders either through informal chat or formally through writing before undertaking any strategic planning. This feedback mechanism gives stakeholders a chance to respond and think strategically about the plan thereby helping in devising an underlying process that assists in the implementation of the plan. Moreover, the strategic plan can successfully be implemented if it is kept alive through continuous monitoring. I could achieve this by ensuring that front-line employees who manage daily activities at the facility are trained or recruited in order to expand their skills and develop new competencies which are essential in implementing the strategic planning.
In conclusion, ensuring successful implementation of any strategic plan requires an effective inclusive process that considers all stakeholders, especially the front-line employees, who frequently interact with such special groups. It should not only be senior-level management implementation as they are only administrative but not actively involved in the physical fulfillment of the strategic plan.