Write an Improvement Action Plan

By Barry Sweeny, 2010

Write “Action Plans” that describe what you will do to improve your program, and to define and structure the major details to get that done.

Specifically, this means:

  1. Restate the Improvement Goals are their associated Improvement Targets (objectives). Be sure to number these so their relationships are clear and it’s obvious which target goes with which goal, and the sequence for goals (1, 2, 3).
  2. Next to each target, add activity plans so it’s clear what each step will need to be to achieve the target.
  3. Third, add a time line, specific dates, or other time identifier (like 1st month, or year 2) so those doing it know by when it must be done.
  4. Finally, define persons responsible to do each step of your improvement activities. If there is shared responsibility, try to define who gets which parts.

Following this is one way that such an action plan could be organized. Of course, there are other possibilities. This chart assumes that a program evaluation process has identified that proteges are not growing professionally at a satisfactory rate, OR perhaps, that the program wants to know this, but has no valid means of ASSESSING protege growth.  So the CBAM Model has been chosen as the means to track and assess this, and the mentors have been chosen to do that.

SAMPLE  PROGRAM  ACTION  PLAN  STRUCTURE
ACTIVITIES TIME LINE PERSONS RESPONSIBLE
Improvement Goal #1>
(Data conclusion #6)
All proteges will reach the Consequence “Stage of Concern” of the CBAM* by the end of their second year of employment.
Improvement Target #1A:  All Proteges. will be at the Mechanical Management Stage or better by the end of month 6 year 1 1A1. Train Mentors to use CBAM Stages to assess Protege needs and design
mentoring response.
month 1, year1 Mentor Program Director
1A2. MoM** follows up with each mentor for mastery of CBAM uses. month 2, year 1 Mentor Program Director
1A3. Mentors mark weekly protege placement on the CBAM Stages of Concern chart on the program web site. each week by Friday, 4 pm Every assigned Mentor
1A4. Program leader monitors Protege growth, intervenes with mentor as
needed to lend further CBAM support and accountability for Protege improvement
within a week of below standard progress Mentor Program Director or MoM alternate
Improvement Target #1B:All Proteges will be at the Routine Management Stage or better by end of the first year. 1B1. Present summary level graph of CBAM progress of all proteges at each Mentor Peer Support Group meeting so that each Mentor can see where his/her protege is relative to the whole protege group. once each of the 3rd and 4th quarters of the program year Mentor Program Director
1B2. Mentor Program Director will meet with any Mentor whose Protege is not progressing adequately on the CBAM, to determine changes mentor must make, MoM support needed, other needed interventions, or informed if the Protege is to be dismissed. If dismissal is likely, mentor will be counseled about mentoring changes needed. No later than end of 3rd quarter. Mentor Program Director and appropriate Mentors
Improvement Goal #2 >
(Data conclusion #3)
All Proteges will score 90% or better on the Scale of
Beginning Professional Competencies (SBPC***) by the end of year 1.
Improvement Target #2A:All Proteges will score at least 70% on the SBPC by the end of their
first year of employment.
2A1.  All Proteges will work with their mentor to complete the self-assessment part of the SBPC, identify areas for improvement, set improvement goals, and define a growth plan. month 2, year 1 All Proteges & their Mentors
2A2.  All Proteges will attend company trainings which address their growth goals, or external trainings when internal ones are not available for the needed topic. Tuition will be paid if external trainings are approved by the mentor and department chair in advance. year 1 The Mentor Program Director will set and use a process to monitor these requirements.
2A3.  All Mentors will work with their Proteges to identify goal-related training the protege attends, and to provide follow up support for the proteges to implement in their work what they learned in the trainings. year 1 All Mentors & Proteges, monitored quarterly by the Mentor Program
Director
Improvement Target #2B:All Proteges will score at least 80% on the SBPC by the end of their
18th month of employment.
2B1. Etc. Etc. Etc.

KEY:

* “Stage of Concern” of the CBAM” = Concerns-Based Adoption Model,  “Consequence” is the next to top level of professional development. An “indicator” or measure of increasing professional performance.

** MoM = Mentoring of Mentors, provided by program’s trainer or leader to ensure the mentors can skillfully do what they were trained to do.

*** The SBPC does not exist, but was invented to illustrate the concept of another “indicator” or measure of performance.