strategic planning

3365 Words Aug 11th, 2015 14 Pages
1. Introduction to Strategic Planning
If you don 't know where your business is going, any road will get you there.
What is a Strategic Plan?
Entrepreneurs and business managers are often so preoccupied with immediate issues that they lose sight of their ultimate objectives. That 's why a business review or preparation of a strategic plan is a virtual necessity. This may not be a recipe for success, but without it a business is much more likely to fail. A sound plan should:
Serve as a framework for decisions or for securing support/approval.
Provide a basis for more detailed planning.
Explain the business to others in order to inform, motivate & involve.
Assist benchmarking & performance monitoring.
Stimulate change and become building
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Also, some people confuse mission statements with value statements (see below) - the former should be very hard-nosed while the latter can deal with 'softer ' issues surrounding the business. The following table contrasts hard and soft mission statements.
Hard
Soft
What business is/does
Primary products/services
Key processes & technologies
Main customer groups
Primary markets/segments
Principal channels/outlets
Reason for existence
Competitive advantages
Unique/distinctive features
Important philosophical/social issues
Image, quality, style, standards
Stakeholder concerns

Compare the following statements:
Hard Statement
Soft Statement
X Corp. designs, develops, assembles and markets systems for data base management. These systems integrate its proprietary operating system software with hardware supplied by major manufacturers, and are sold to small, medium and large-sized companies for a range of business applications. Its systems are distinguished by a sophisticated operating system, which permits use without trained data-processing personnel.
Our mission is to enhance our customers ' business by providing the very highest quality products and services possible. Our customer support strategy is based upon total, no-compromise customer satisfaction and we

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