You need to be able to communicate the who, what, why, where, how and when of your program to diverse audiences such as parents, funders, partners and staff. Are you prepared to answer the following questions? Are written responses available in formats appropriate to the communication styles of your different audiences?
Taking time to brainstorm, agree upon and actually write down the answers to the following questions will help you structure, promote and fund your program. Some of the answers you will only use internally within your organization. Other answers can form the basis of a communications piece about your program, such as a Web site, brochure or flier.
Who started the program?
Who participates in the program?
Who benefits from the program?
Who is involved in developing and implementing the program?
Who supports the program?
What are the special needs of the people we serve?
What do we want the program to achieve? What are the intended goals and outcomes?
What steps do we have to take to implement the program? What are the major phases and the activities for each phase?
What other people, organizations and partnerships are part of this program?
What staff do we have on board to run the program?
What skills, experience and characteristics will our new staff need to do their jobs?
What training and professional development will be provided so that staff can work effectively?
What problems are we likely to face in implementing the program? How can we address and overcome those problems?
What does the program cost?
What specific resources do we need to run the program? How will we get those resources?
What process will be put in place for continuous improvement? How will we build upon what we learn?
Why was the program created?
Why have we chosen the program model we use?
How does the program operate, including the schedule and logistics for all activities?
How will we track what we do?
How will we track what we learn?
How will we measure the progress, successes and failures of the program?
How will we recruit new staff?
How will the program sustain its funding?
How will we market, communicate about and publicize the program?