The College of Business held a strategic planning retreat on Friday September 8. The session was held off-campus at the new Sad Monkey Mercantile a mile west of Palo Duro Canyon State Park. The Mercantile has an adjacent event hall for private gatherings, and the spacious accommodations and expansive views outside allowed for creative juices to flow.
Strategic planning is a critical part of the College’s efforts to remain relevant and focused in its delivery of quality education programs, as well as satisfy requirements of its AACSB accreditation.
Facilitating the session was Eric Alexander of Six Arrows Consulting, who led faculty, staff, and administrators on a guided tour of strategic planning building blocks. This involved assessing our current offerings along with external factors affecting the current market for higher education. These included demographic trends, the economy, the political/legal structure, and the competitive arena.
Alexander then pivoted and guided those present in a traditional SWOT Analysis, which involves assessing internal strengths and weaknesses, as well as opportunities and threats present in the market.
Thanks to Alexander’s informal method, it was possible to have frank discussion while retaining a high level of objectivity. Given that the purpose of the session was to launch the strategic planning cycle for the five-year period leading up to the next AACSB review, the COB collectively made great progress.
The Strategic Planning Committee will take the results of the retreat and use them to mold and shape their recommendations for the College. Given that strategy is never a one-and-done proposition, thanks to ever-changing forces in higher ed and the market in general, the retreat was a necessary first step. Doing so in the spirit of shared governance gave everyone an equal voice in the process.