Sunday 8 February 2009

What is a Portfolio Approach?

Benefits link across a number of projects
We all have plans. Or, as the old saying goes, 'if you don't have a plan, you're part of someone else's plan' (in life, this applies equally to goals).
Each goal that you hold should have a plan; and of course each plan should have its goal. But why do you have goals? Usually because of the benefits you will enjoy. The desired benefit may have come first (I'm concerned that I want more energy, therefore I'll set a goal to be fit), or the goal may have come first; it's even possible that the plan came first (you of I joined an existing team and started to see what you would gain at a later stage).

Strategic Goals

We may have Strategic Goals (making a difference to my patient group; a holiday; an investment; the next promotion; director in the job title; family time), and SMART (specific, measurable, ambitious, realistic and timely) benefits attached to these goals.
Each day I hope the things I do will make progress on one or more of the SMART benefits, which in turn contribute to the strategic goals. For example: Tuesday's progress meeting contributes to service user experience, and to my career. Wednesday's course contributes to my career but in two distinct ways - improved skills and qualifications, and improved networking. This additional teaching role brings in extra money as well as all of the other goals. It works like a portfolio - each thing I do contributes to a number of benefits which in turn contribute to a number of goals. But the actual number of strategic goals is finite, in fact probably fairly small. A bit of a matrix.

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