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9 Mission statement (including goals and objectives), ley Metro Rail, Inc., in Phoenix, Arizona) recognized that Environmental scan, there is often a significant gap or breakdown between com- Strategy development, pleting a strategic plan and implementing its recommenda- Action plan development, tions. Too often the focus is on the production of a plan doc- Resource allocation, and ument and not enough emphasis is placed on its execution. Performance measurement. He outlined several principles to ensure that the strategic planning effort is successful (11, p. 80): An environmental scan generally involves an analysis or assessment of both the external and internal issues that are The process needs to be ongoing, with broad input for likely to affect an organization. It is sometimes referred to as a development and specific responsibility for effective "situation audit." implementation. The plan needs to have milestones and performance It concluded that in the various transportation agencies stud- metrics to measure progress and celebrate achievements. ied, a "strategic management process and its benefits are pres- The plan needs to involve stakeholders in the develop- ent and understood in less than a dozen state departments of ment, deployment, and refinement stages. transportation" and that "many of the remainder--plus many Finally, a strategic plan must be a living document transit, airport, port authorities, and other publicly funded that evolves over time as the public transit system transportation agencies--seem to have insufficient interest in, becomes more successful at achieving its short- and or understanding of, strategic management" (10, p. 1). long-range goals. The report included a set of guidelines for instituting strate- A similar case, that is, that strategic plans often fail to gic management comprised of four primary stages: achieve full-scale implementation and significant service improvements, is made in "Segmented Strategic Planning: Stage I. Identifying the Need for Strategic An Incremental Approach to Transit Planning and Implemen- Management tation" (12). The authors propose a segmented approach-- rather than attempting a comprehensive organization-wide Determine the current status of strategic management in strategic planning effort, they recommend a "series of orches- the agency. trated, low-level strategic plans" (12, p. 1). The report describes such an approach in Knoxville, Tennessee, where only the Stage II. Establishment or Enhancement of Key downtown and university campus trolley service was the focus Strategic Management Elements of a recent strategic planning effort. This segmentation made it much more manageable and helped to avoid many of the Define the agency's business. obstacles that often arise from a larger-scale planning effort. Develop plans for implementing strategic management initiatives. In December 2001, recognizing the potential of strategic planning to improve the effectiveness of transit systems, APTA produced a Strategic Planning Resource Kit (avail- Stage III. Integration of the Key Elements into a Functioning System able on CD) (13). Basically, the kit contains copies of the strategic plans of 28 transit systems. Ensure that the agency mission statement and goal structure are in place. STRATEGIC PLANNING AND PERFORMANCE Obtain chief administrative officer and senior management MEASUREMENT commitment to the strategic management process. Establish a clearly understood division of responsibility for Almost all of the literature on strategic planning and man- strategic management implementation, including the selec- agement emphasizes the need for linking the process to per- tion of implementation managers or facilitators. formance measurement. This is necessary to be able to mon- Develop an accurate information base and maintain its itor whether plans are being achieved and whether corrective timeliness. action needs to be taken. Stage IV. Ongoing Use and Refinement of the There is a great deal of literature on the general subject of Strategic Management System performance measurement. An excellent and very compre- hensive study of the issue that pertains directly to transit is Monitor the strategic management system. the 2003 TCRP Report 88: A Guidebook for Developing a Develop a reward and recognition program. Transit Performance-Measurement System (14). This report provides detailed guidance for developing a system using tra- In a 2003 article, "How to Develop a Strategic Plan That ditional and nontraditional measures that address both cus- Won't Gather Dust" (11), Richard Simonetta (CEO of Val- tomer and community issues.