Ideally, measures are decided only when the project’s objectives and strategies have been defined. While strategies describe how to proceed in principle, measures are concrete activities derived from these strategies that have a direct reference to particular objectives, defined deadlines and responsibilities. When deciding measures, make sure that they are compatible, effect-oriented and designed to achieve optimal results.
It cannot be taken for granted that objectives will be defined before measures. In practice, the point of departure is often an idea for specific actions that you would like to realize or that have been implemented elsewhere and proven successful. Then, you try to identify objectives that fit the intended measure. With this approach you run the risk of repeatedly applying the same or similar intervention methods, without considering whether other methods might be more appropriate to address challenges and health problems. The advantage of defining objectives and strategies first is that the goals become clear and you can think more flexibly about how to achieve them.
In the early stages of a project, measures can already be defined and recorded in the project design. However, it is not possible to determine deadlines and responsibilities at this point. That can only be done in the implementation phase, as measures are gradually realized, implemented and evaluated – and, where appropriate, adjusted or even abandoned. At the start of each new phase, there is a meeting where measures for the subsequent phase are discussed and planned, always with the overall project objectives in mind. Intermediate objectives, the timeframe for the implementation and the responsibilities of each team member are defined at this point. At the end of each phase, the attainment of intermediate objectives must be checked, and efforts and results compared.
If the project is conducted with the help of the project management tool on quint-essenz, a graph (Gantt diagram) depicting the advancement of measures can be generated at the touch of a button.
When planning your project, make sure you do not mix objectives (what needs changing?), strategies (how can this change be achieved?) and measures (which concrete steps are necessary?). Define your objectives before deciding on concrete measures. Consider the advantages and disadvantages of different strategies carefully. Finally, check that each planned measure serves a specific strategy, and that strategies and objectives correspond.