August 2004 Bulletin

“AAOS in 2010” planning begins with member input

By Stuart L. Weinstein, MD
The strategic plan of an organization is the compass used to define organizational direction. It prioritizes organizational goals and determines the appropriation of the organization’s resources. In 1999, the AAOS developed its first strategic plan, under the direction of then-second vice president Richard H. Gelberman, MD, and chief operating officer Lawrence E. Rosenthal, PhD. The result became known as “AAOS in 2005.”

By Stuart L.
Weinstein, MD

This process defined—from both programmatic and organizational standpoints—where the AAOS wanted to be in the year 2005. The last component of that process was completed with the reorganization of the AAOS staff structure and the hiring of Karen L. Hackett, FACHE, CAE, as chief executive officer.

Next steps

We have now begun an aggressive two-year program to define the AAOS and where we want it and our specialty to be at the end of the Bone and Joint Decade. Our member and staff team began the process by taking a look back at the assumptions that guided the “AAOS in 2005” process to see whether these assumptions were still valid and should form the basis of the 2010 planning. We then supplemented these assumptions with others that took into account outside and internal forces affecting the AAOS that had been identified in the last few years.

We have just recently completed a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis of each aspect of the AAOS—education, advocacy, academic affairs, health policy, communications, diversity, research and organization. The Board of Directors, Committee and Council Chairs, and AAOS staff participated in this analysis. We also completed an environmental scan of various issues such as medical liability, Medicare reimbursement, workforce, and diversity that may affect the organization and determined a time frame for addressing each issue. The SWOT analysis and the environmental scan will form the basis for a Member Needs Assessment survey, which will be mailed this fall to a random sample of AAOS members.

Your input

The Member Needs Assessment will be used to guide program development for the AAOS. Membership needs must (and will) be met by the AAOS. Once program decisions are made, any necessary structural changes to the organization will be addressed to meet the program offerings. The entire process should be completed by the spring of 2005.

The Member Needs Assessment survey is your opportunity to shape the future of the AAOS. The leaders of this organization can be responsive to your needs only if we know what they are. If you are part of the membership sample that receives the survey, please take the time to complete it. Let your Board of Directors know what your thoughts are about AAOS and how the AAOS can best meet your constantly changing needs in the years to come.

Stuart L. Weinstein, MD, is first vice president of the AAOS. He can be reached at

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