From the President

Michael Horsfield
By Mike Horsfield, PT, MBA


“Strategic Plan” is the title of the most expensive and dustiest binders on my bookshelf. For years, the dreamer in me loved the process while my pragmatist side disliked everything about it. The experience of asking “what else can we do?” and modeling out the future impact on financials brought comfort and hope. “Plans” were abundant but finding the “strategy” in the documents was often difficult. When we started asking “what aren’t we going to do?”, true strategy emerged in the plan. Strategy is combining an inspirational vision with focused and disciplined action. Who is your customer? More importantly, who is not? What makes you unique? What do you do better than anyone else? What are you going to stop doing? These questions reveal strategy, and the answers make pragmatic dreamers sleep well.

Appreciating the complex interworkings of APTA and its respective components has been one of the many blessings of this role. It has resulted in amplified gratitude for staff and volunteers and renewed optimism that our best 100 years is still to come. This hopefulness comes from recognizing the power that applied collaborative strategy will have on the great work of Sections and Chapters. During my short tenure, it is exciting to see an increased willingness of component leaders to lean in and engage in strategic inter-component conversations. What can we count on you doing? What are you counting on us to do? Most importantly, what do you need us not to do? These questions will undoubtedly lead to a collaborative plan that will tear down silos, eliminate unproductive competitive overlap, focus core competencies, and allow us to go further together.

Your amazing Board of Directors is excited to share more depth on these exciting collaborations when we gather in Dallas. Please bring your strategic questions along with you. Your perspective is invaluable. Transformative change will require all of us to keep asking the next best question.

Together, we got this! 

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