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3. Make it a living tool

I think the hardest thing about this process has been understanding that is part of what we already do. It’s about looking at what we do and making that ‘the plan’. Initially I, and my colleagues, approached the action plan as a kind of arduous additional task when actually it’s about interpreting what we already do. Gregory Nash, The Point, Eastleigh

3. Make it a living tool

Action plans are supposed to be active tools, not static documents. Make it a living tool. Items should be constantly added and later removed when they have been addressed. You can add always an action point stating that you will need to revisit a section or area again at a specific point in time, for example when planning to run a new building.

Action plans can vary in complexity, depending on the size and needs of the organisation. At their simplest, they are a list of what you will do, when. A more complex version might include details of:

  • what the action will be
  • what it aims to address
  • how you will know when it has been actioned
  • when the action will begin, and when it will be completed
  • how many worker hours it will take to complete
  • who will deliver it (internal staff or external person, who?)
  • how it will be monitored
  • who will check that it has been done (board?, named staff member?)
  • how much it will cost
  • how it will be implemented and/or sustained