Strategic planning is an organizational management activity that is used to set priorities, focus energy and resources, strengthen operations, ensure that employees and other stakeholders are working towards common goals, establish agreement around intended outcomes/results, and assess and adjust the organization’s direction in response to a changing environment. It is a disciplined effort that produces fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is, who it serves, what it does, and why it does it, with a focus on the future.
- Facilitates communication between managers.
- Identifies strategic goals and strategic intent.
- Reduces resistance to change.
- Improves resource allocation.
- Leads to sustainable competitive advantage.
Costly to perform for small and medium businesses
- The process is very complex: Strategic planning process consists of many steps, which are interconnected with each other.
- Low rate of successful implementation: The poor implementation is the reason for failure which more often the case of misaligned operational and strategic goals.
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- Short-range plans:
Applied to a specific time frame in which a specific series of operations will be carried out, assessed, and measured. The standard short-range plan will represent annual or semiannual operations with a short-term deliverable.
- Long-range plans:
Long-range plans deal with highlighting the way in which operations interact to achieve long-term profitability and returns on investment. With increase in size and complexity the long-range plans constitute the interaction of individual processes.
- Operational plans:
They establish both the budgetary resources necessary for execution and easily assessed objectives that can define the success of any given project.
- Standing plans:
These are based on operation that must be repeated indefinitely within a business or corporation and thus provide an overview for consistent activities.
- Single-use plans:
Single-use plans covers specific process that is an outline to normal operations. In all likelihood, a single-use plan will never need to be repeated and will simply cover the content involved in one circumstance.