Sport Edmonton

Strategic Planning

Strategic and operational plans help your organization to clearly define goals and how they can be achieved

The Planning Process

Strategic and operational plans help your organization to clearly define goals and how they can be achieved. Plans help guide employees and volunteers to use their time and resources more effectively. Providing clear objectives and assigning tasks to be undertaken in line with these objectives leads to better outcomes and a more coordinated, productive organization.

Planning is the process of thinking about where you are now, where you want to be in the future and how you are going to get there.

A strategic plan should outline who you are, what you do and where you want to be as an organization including:

The operational plan (or business plan) covers how your organization will achieve your strategic priorities. Before you begin planning, examine the plans of any provincial and/or national sporting organization. Their plan can be used as a guide for developing your own plan and help build stronger relationships with your affiliate body. For more information on the benefits of planning and what is involved, see the information sheet: Strategic and Operational Planning for Sporting Organizations (PDF).

Documentation Templates

These templates can be used as a guide to assist in planning your meetings and developing your organization’s strategic and operational plans. Examples:


Engaging with the people involved in your organization during the planning process helps to ensure that your strategic and operational plans accurately reflect everyone’s views. Conducting a pre-planning survey and/or SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis can be an efficient way of consulting people to assist in developing your plan.

Running a Planning Meeting

Planning meetings are an opportunity to involve a variety of people from your organization in the strategic and operational planning process. The process itself can be just as important as the final document and the plan is more likely to be acted on if people in the organization contribute to its development. Considerations for a planning meeting include booking an accessible venue, arranging for the necessary technology (laptop, projector, etc.), all necessary documentation, refreshments, and a confident facilitator.


A facilitator is someone who helps run a meeting and is responsible for helping to provide structure to the discussion and debate. It is important to write down key ideas and information that the group works through. For meetings that have a larger number of people, assign a separate person to act as the scribe to allow the facilitator to focus on guiding the discussion.