Despite the hullabaloo about commercialisation, the bulk of TNM Super League clubs and league runners Sulom still have no strategic plans.
Football analysts have since warned that without blueprints, clubs should not expect to succeed in their plans to turn into full-fledged commercial entities.
Silver Strikers and Nyasa Big Bullets are the only clubs that have strategic plans, while for others, it is either work in progress or nothing on the table.
The Central Bankers have a draft copy that has been adopted by the club’s board, but awaits the endorsement of Reserve Bank of Malawi Governor Wilson Banda, who is the team’s patron.
Silver board member responsible for commercialisation Mayamiko Mwinjilo said: “For us, it’s almost as good as done. We had one in place that was supposed to run from 2018 to 2023, but we had to review it based on the club’s new structure.
“What remains is to produce the final document and then take it to the governor.
“We are trying our best to set the pace so that others can emulate us.”
Nyasa Big Bullets director responsible for marketing Noel Lipipa said the People’s Team has a blueprint in place, while the club’s new chief executive officer Suzgo Nyirenda said they are working on beefing it up.
He said: “[My predecessor] Escort Chinula and the board have set the ball rolling towards commercialising the club and I will just add cream on top of the cake.”
Mighty Wanderers chairperson Chancy Gondwe said the task force that was set up to oversee the commercialisation drive is working on the blueprint.
Civil Service (Civo) United general secretary (GS) Ronald Chiwaula said their strategic plan is still work in progress.
“Civo has plans to have a strategic plan, the sponsor is still working on it and soon it will come out. But I’m not sure how soon it will be ready as such issues are done at higher level after consultations, but eventually the elected executive will have to go, be mindful it’s a process,” he said.
Ekwendeni Hammers patron Gift Mkandawire said the club has just started the process.
“This is our first season in the Super League, so it’s a learning process. But, of course, there is a skeleton in place already,” he said.
Mzuzu Warriors GS Donnex Chilonga said theirs is also work in progress.
“It is very important to have a strategic plan to guide every institution’s actions.
“Mzuzu Warriors is looking forward to having such a plan. Sometimes poor performance of most clubs can be attributed to lack of strategic direction.”
On his part, Chitipa United GS Duma Ngoma said: “Ours is in the final draft phase. There is an expert who is doing it for us and it could be ready at the end of the month.”
While Karonga United GS RamzeySimwaka and Mighty Tigers technical director Robin Alufandika said their blueprints are still being worked on.
Football analyst George Kaudza Masina said the development is testimony that most clubs are run on trial and error basis, “as they are not being guided by any blue print”.
He said: “This is evident from the haphazard way these clubs are administered.
“As part of commercialisation and even good practice, a strategic plan is essential as it guides where you are going and how to reach there.
“Any decisions you make as an organisation has to be in line with your strategic plan. Maybe these clubs don’t even understand what a strategic plan is all about.”
He said it is unfortunate that apart from Bullets and Central Bankers, whose blueprint awaits ratification, almost all the other clubs don’t have a strategic plan.
“The challenge of running a club without a strategic plan is a recipe for disaster and both FAM and Sulom have to take a leading role to make sure that all clubs have a strategic plan if our football is to make a headway,” said Kaudza Masina.
Another analyst Humphrey Mvula said: “The lack of strategic or any meaningful business plan continues to bedevil all our football institutions, including the mother bodies themselves, FAM and Sulom inclusive.”