Planning : Strategic Planning Process

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Strategic Planning Process
No two people go through life the same exact ways. Some choose to live moment to moment while others feel the need to have a grander plan for their future. People develop plans for different scenarios in their life to include what college they will attend, what profession they want to enter, the type of wedding and even, when they want to get married. Individuals who live by a plan can often be heard referencing their Plan B or five-to-ten year plan. Just as individuals like to plan, businesses also want a blueprint for their short- and long-term growth. Planning enables organizational leaders and managers to play a significant role in creating progressive objectives that enrich company productivity and
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The first step in the basic planning process is setting objectives. Objectives should be both short-term and long-term performance targets. Short-term objectives define how to improve operations in current period while long-term goals force an organization to think through how actions in place will affect the company in the future (Gamble & Thompson, 2011). Goals must be specific, observable, measurable and achievable (Plunkett, Allen & Attner, 2013). Goals drive what resources and money are needed to meet the objectives. Once goals are set, managers must turn to any barriers in achieving the objectives.
The next step in planning is analyzing and evaluating the environments. Analyzing and evaluating the environments is when managers reflect on internal and external setting as well as current organizational status (Plunkett, Allen & Attner, 2013). When analyzing the internal environment, managers review current policies, resources employees, money and material to determine any barriers to achieving company goals (Plunkett, Allen & Attner, 2013). When reviewing external environment, leaders consider strengths and weaknesses of partners, advancing technology and global markets (Plunkett, Allen & Attner, 2013). Many managers turn to Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threat (SWOT) analysis to complete their internal and external assessments (Gamble & Thompson, 2011). SWOT analysis can be done by all levels of management. Once SWOT is
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