Discussion Panel: Strategic Planning
D. Vukotić, Serbian Ice Hockey Association; F. Tozünler, Ice Hockey Federation of North Macedonia; A. Mrkva, Bosnian Ice Hockey Federation, Dr. G. Maier, Austrian Ice Hockey Federation; A. Nieminen, International Ice Hockey Federation, K. Švigir, International Ice Hockey Federation, moderated by R. Snoj, Slovenian Ice Hockey Federation
After the introduction, the discussion focused mainly on discussing strategic planning approach used by the Project Partners, exchanging experience, and knowledge-sharing between the participants.
Again, it was emphasized there are two major pressing issues that must not be overlooked – a problem with financing (finding and keeping sponsors, how to attract more fans) and the problem with infrastructure.
One of the panelists, Mr. Ferhat Tozünler, compared building strategy (and later executing it) to climbing:
Strategy is a climbing wall that takes you towards your goals. If you get stuck on your way, you will not quit, but you will find another way.
During the panel, Mr. A. Nieminen, an IIHF representative, shared how Finland faces the problem of writing a strategic plan and warned the panelists (and all of the participants) that it is important to know that things, in reality, will never follow the strategy, which requires the Federations to be able to react quickly and adjust to the changes.
Among the questions, raised in the debate, was also how to push things forward, how to develop a strategy and the sport itself with the lack of finances and motivation of those involved.
Among the topics discussed were also two important questions: Why do strategies fail and how to attract more people to follow the process of strategic development. Furthermore, it was also discussed how to monitor the process of strategic development.