Strategy Planning A Thoughtful Plan To Address The Future Business Essay


" With out a strategy the organization is like a ship with out a rudder."

" Strategic management is not a box of tricks or a bundle of techniques.

It is analytical thinking & commitment of resources to action."


" For us strategy is a pattern of objectives ,purposes & goals & major

Policies , and policies and plans for achieving those goals ,stated in

Such a way as to define what business the company is in or is to be in

& the kind the company it is or it is to be."




"Strategic planning is the process of deciding on the objectives of the

Organization, on changes in these objectives, on resources used to

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Attain these objectives ,& on the policies that are to govern the

Acquisition ,use and disposition of these resources."



" Strategic planning is the continuous process of making present

Entrepreneurial ( risk- taking) decisions systematically & with the

Greatest knowledge of their futurity organising systematically the

Efforts needed to carry out these decisions ; measuring the result of

These decisions against expectations through organised ,systematic




HARPER & ROW 1974.

" Strategic planning is the planning for the fulfilment of the organisations

Fundamental purposes. It includes the process of establishing & clarifying

Purposes ,& determining the major means "PATH WAY" (strategies)

Through which those objectives will be pursued."



This process involves envisioning & planning a workable fit between

Organisations competencies and limitations on one hand & opportunities

And treats on the other hand with the aim of better serving the customer.


01- Anticipate what actions are going to be needed to respond to the


02- Refine an existing way of doing business.

03- Strategies take shape across the organisation.

04- Strategy often follow a planning cycle.


01- Mission or vision

02- Setting objectives

03- Crafting strategy

04- Organising & financing.

05- Implementing & executing

06- Controlling & improving

In 1974 ( MANAGEMENT TASKS & RESPONSIBILITIES. PP 123- 125) PETER DRUKER ,found the same problem in confusion that management had about planning for objectives and planning for people. He raised four misconceptions arising from the term "strategic planning". He said

01- Strategic planning is not a box of tricks ,or a bundle of techniques.

02- Strategic planning is not fore casting.

03- Strategic planning does not deal with future decisions.

04- Strategic planning is not an attempt to eliminate risk.

Peter Drucker observes that strategy is any commitment of present resources to future expectations. It involves both "futuring"& "visioning".

Futuring is identifying still emerging market opportunities and treats and aligning them with internal capabilities.

Visioning involves preparing the organisation to adapt in order to compete in the long term.

"Strategic thinking includes carefully examining the external and internal environments of the organisation and deciding the best approaches . It is needed to always ensure a good fit between the internal and external environments."

( McNamara, Field Guide to Non profit strategic planning & facilitation 2003)

" How can you lead if you don't know where you are going?."


" Management job is not to seethe company as it is…..but as it can become."


" It is not the strongest of the species that survive ,nor the most intelligent ,but the

One most responsive to change."


" Analysis is the critical starting point of strategic thinking."


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All organisations , regardless of size and maturity, for profit or non profit , need a thoughtful plan to address the future. Strategic planning is the process by which the operational and governmental bodies of the organisation develop goals ,strategies ,to meet those goals for the future.

It involves these CORE REALIZATIONS:-

01- The external environment changes more quickly than internal factors.

02- The environment is uncertain.

03- The environment is not different to the organization.

04- The environment is continually changing.

05- Financial measures are a measure of the past ; the organization needs to ask WHY

It happened?

In the process of strategic planning the organization will examine different perspectives. How will we look to the stake holders ( financial ) ; how must they look to their customers / clients / patients / ( consumers ) ; at what internal processes they must excel ( internal ); and how can the organisation learn and improve? (learning and growth) .

Strategic planning involves identifying the organization's vision ,values ,purpose ,surveying ,validating ,reviewing the current strengths weaknesses ,opportunities ,and treats. Identifying and gaining consensus on the issues, selecting strategic goals and monitoring and measuring results. Strategic planning will help to assess

WHERE WE ARE NOW ? ,WHERE YOU WANT TO BE ? And develop a road map to HOW TO GET THERE? And cover the drift.

The process begins with identifying ,modifying ,or confirming the organization Mission . A shared purpose contributes to making work meaning full for employees and attracts ,motivates ,inspires ,provides guidance and helps retain the best people .

Strategic planning is vital to not only the operations of the non profit organisation but also to their continued viability as most do not success fully access the grants. A strategic planning provides a vision to the organization. An organization that has a strategic planning in place which hope fully are supported by detailed project plans generally are way more success full in wining grants. Strategic planning can take many forms but it is increasingly becoming the real key to receiving fundings.

There are three levels of strategic planning .

01- corporate level.

02-business level.

03-operational level.

These levels are inter linked and inter grated .

In crafting a strategy ,management is saying , in effect ,"among all the paths and actions we could have chosen ,we have decided to move in this direction ,focus on these markets and customer needs, compete in these fashions, allocate our resources and energies in this ways, and rely on these particular approaches to doing business".

A strategy thus entails managerial choices among alternatives and signals organizational commitment to specific markets ,competitive approaches ,and ways of operating.

With out a strategy ,managers have no prescription for doing business, a road map to competitive advantage , no game plan for pleasing customers or achieving good performance. Lack of a consciously shaped strategy is a sure fire ticket for organizational drift , competitive mediocrity ,internal wheel - spinning, and lacklustre results. Secondly there is an equally compelling need to mold the efforts and decisions of different divisions , departments , managers , and groups in to coordinated, compatible whole. All the actions being taken in different parts of the business ---R&D, design and engineering ,production ,marketing ,customer services ,human resources ,information technology ,and finance ---need to be mutually supportive.

Absent a purposeful strategy for the entire enterprise , managers have no overarching business rationale for molding the actions and decisions initiate across the organization into a cohesive whole , no underlying business basis for uniting cross departments operating into a team effort, no conscious business model for generating profit.

Excellent execution of an excellent strategy is the best test of managerial excellence ---and the most reliable recipe for organizational success.

Among all the things managers do , nothing effects a company's ultimate success or failure more fundamentally than how well its management team set's the company's long-term direction, develops competitively effective strategic moves and business approaches , and implements what needs to be done internally to produce good day in ,day out strategy execution. Indeed good strategy and good strategy execution are the most trust worthy signs of good management. Managers do not deserve a gold star for designing a potentially brilliant strategy but failing to put the organizational means in place to carry it out in high-caliber fashion -weak implementation undermines the strategy's potential and paves the way for shortfalls in customer satisfaction and company's performance. Competent execution of a mediocre strategy scarcely merits enthusiastic applause for management's efforts either. The standard for good management rest to a very great extent on how well -conceived the company's strategy is and how competently it is executed .

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Granted good strategy combined with good strategy execution does not guarantee that a company will avoid periods of so-so or even subpar performance. Sometimes organizations with well conceived strategies ,showcase practices ,and very capable managers experience performance problems because of unexpected shifts in market conditions or uncontrollable technology delays or unanticipated costs. Sometimes it takes several years for competent strategy -making / strategy implementing efforts to show good results.

It is the responsibility of the company's management team to adjust to unexpectedly tough conditions by undertaking strategic defences and business approaches that can over come diversity. The faster a company's business environment is changing, the more critical it becomes for the managers to be good entrepreneurs in making both predictions and timely strategic adjustments. How fast the company managers adapt to changing market conditions , how boldly they pursue new business opportunities, how much they emphasize out -innovating the competition, and how often they champion actions to improve organizational performance are good barometers of a company's entrepreneurial spirit.

An organization's chief executive officer ,as captain of the ship , is the most visible and important strategy manager .the title of CEO carries with it the mantles of chief direction setter, chief objective setter , chief strategy maker , and chief strategy implementer ,for the total enterprise. Ultimate responsibility for leading the tasks of forming ,implementing ,and executing a strategic plan for the whole organization rests on CEO , even though other senior managers normally have significant leadership roles also.

What the CEO views as strategically important usually is reflected in the company's strategy, and CEO customarily puts a personal stamp of approval on big strategic decisions and actions.

Vice presidents for production ,marketing ,finance ,human resources ,and other functional departments have important strategy - making and strategy - implementing responsibilities as well. Normally the production VP has a lead role in developing and executing the company's production strategy ,the marketing VP oversees the marketing strategy efforts, the financial VP is in charge of devising and implementing an appropriate financial strategy, and so on. Usually senior executives below the CEO are involved in proposing key elements of the overall company strategy and developing major strategic initiatives, working closely with the CEO to hammer out a consensus strategy and coordinate various aspects of executing the strategy.

One of the primary reasons why middle -and lower -echelon managers are part of the strategy -making / strategy implementing team is that the more geographically scattered and diversified an organization's operations are , the more unwieldy it becomes for the headquarters executives to personally craft and lead implementations of all the necessary initiatives . Managers in the corporate office seldom know enough about the situation in every geographic area and operating unit to direct every strategic move made in the field .

It is common practice of the top -level managers to delegate strategy making authority to subordinates who head the organizations subunits where specific strategic results must be achieved. Such delegation fixes accountability for strategic success or failure.

When the managers who implement the strategy are also its architects , it is hard for them to shift the blame or make excuses if they do not achieve the target results.

And ,having participated in developing the strategy they are trying to execute, they are likely to support it strongly, and essential condition for effective strategy execution.

Strategy is the direction and scope of an organization over the long term ,which achieves advantages in the changing environment through its configuration of resources and competencies with the aim of fulfilling stakeholder expectations.

- The long-term direction of an organisation.

- The scope of an organization's activities.

- Advantages for the organization over competitive.

- Strategic fit with the business environment .

- The organization's resources and competencies ( the resource-based-view of


- The views and expectations of power full actors in and around the organisation.

COMPLEXITY is a defining feature of strategy and strategic decisions with wide geographical scope, such as multinational firms or wide range of products or services .

YAHOO! Is facing the same problems complexity and fast moving market environment and poorly organised internal businesses.

UNCERTAINLY is inherent in strategy, because no body can be sure about the future. YAHOO! Is facing the same problem ,because internet environment is one of the constant and unfore-seenable innovations.

OPERATIONAL! Decisions are linked to strategy . Any attempt to coordinate YAHOO! Business units more closely will have knock- on effects on web pages ,designs and links , careers development and advertisers relationships.

This link between overall strategy and operational aspects of the organization is important for two other reasons.

01- if the operational aspects of the organization are not inline with the strategy , then , no matter how well considered the strategy is , it will not succeed .

02- it is at the operational level that real strategic advantage can be achieved. Indeed competence in particular operational activities might determine which strategy developments might most sense.

INTERGRATION is required for effected strategy. Managers have to cross functional and operational boundaries to deal with strategic problems and come to agreements with other managers, who inevitably , have different interests and perhaps different priorities . YAHOO! Needs an intergrated approach to power full advertises such as Sony and Vodafone from across all its businesses.

RELATIONSHIPS & NETWORKS out side the organization are important in strategy (e.g ) with suppliers ,distributers and consumers ( e.g) advertisers ,users are crucial sets of relationships.

CHANGE is typically crucial component of strategy . Change is often difficult because of the heritage of resources and because of organisational cultures .

According to Brand Garling house at least YAHOO barriers to change seems to include a top management that is afraid of taking hand decisions and lack of clear accountability amongst lower level management.