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Public Health Business Planning: A Practical Guide

The Management Academy for Public Health has released a new book with a step-by-step guide for planning effective business strategies for public health-related programs. Public health initiatives may be failing in this country due to a deficit in old-fashioned business skills among top leaders and mid-level managers. These failures stem not from lack of vision or great ideas, but rather the inability to execute those ideas, according to the book, Public Health Business Planning: A Practical Guide. Publication of this book was in part from a grant by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

“People who work in public health are knowledgeable health professionals, but many come up through the ranks with limited business skills,” said Stephen N. Orton, PhD, Deputy Director of the Office of Executive Education at the North Carolina Institute for Public Health and lead author of the new book. Orton and his co-authors, Anne J. Menkens, and Pamela Santos have a simple mission: to teach public health professionals how to use entrepreneurial strategies for social good. They start with the most basic of skills—how to write a business plan.

Drawing on the curriculum of the Management Academy for Public Health, a program run jointly by the School of Public Health and the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the authors have put together this step-by-step guide to writing business plans for public health programs.

The lessons are illustrated by examples from the more than 150 teams who have passed through the Management Academy, a 9-month program that provides lectures, readings, and coaching and requires that students write a business plan for an initiative they actually intend to implement.

The book teaches what it means to use entrepreneurial strategies for social good, and key business planning skills such as:

  • Assessment and strategic planning
  • Program planning, implementation, and evaluation
  • Financial planning and budgeting
  • Market research and social marketing
  • Strategies for getting funded including business writing and speaking
  • Project management and business plan execution strategies

Public Health Business Planning ($69.95 US) may be ordered through Jones and Bartlett Publishers or by phone at 800-832-0034

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