Planning is the art of determining in advance, what should be accomplished by the organization. It is a vital aspect of management that determines whether an organization would perform according to the required standards or not. Planning involves a series of events that managers are supposed to adhere to in order to ensure that all the envisaged results are achieved.
This essay explicates the process of planning for the success of an organization because all organizations are measured by the level of success based on effective planning.
Firstly, managers need to identify the opportunities that exist in their environment. It is vital for managers to be aware of the opportunities that exist in their environment in terms of wider markets, the types of customers and their demands, and potential competitors. This would be achieved by carrying out an effective SWOT analysis that brings out the strengths and weaknesses that exist in the organization. Opportunity identification is vital because it enables managers to interact with the environment and learn from it. In addition, it enables managers to identify on their weaknesses and realize their strengths in the business environment.
Secondly, managers should set objectives. Objectives refer to the desired level of performance and achievements. Therefore, managers should set objectives by determining where they want the organization to be and the exact results they would want to accomplish. The objectives set should be in line with the operations of the organization and should cover all departments within the organization. In setting the objectives, managers must clarify the exact time when they intend to achieve them so that proper timing is observed. The setting of objectives would help the organization move forward on established grounds with certain areas of focus.
Thirdly, managers should consider the planning premises. This step entails the environment in which the plans are going to operate. Therefore, managers are required to clearly identify whether they want their plans to operate in internal or external environment. This means that the plans could be utilized either within the organization or outside the organization. Determining the planning premises is vital because it helps in proper formulation of the plans that would suit to a particular environment. Consideration of premises would help in the formulation of plans that march the needs of that particular environment hence convenience.
Managers should then identify alternatives. Alternatives are the various aspects that could help in the achievement of the set objectives in a particular environment. This step would involve brainstorming that gives rise to myriad alternatives that could be undertaken in the accomplishment of the set objectives in a particular environment. The alternatives settled on should be in line with the set objectives and the chosen premise in order to ensure that there is no conflict of ideas. Alternatives give a rough idea of the various directions the set objectives could be approached and finally achieved. They gave a series of methods to reaching a particular set of objectives.
The alternatives should then be compared in light of the objectives that had been earlier formulated. Managers should accumulate all the alternatives identified and bring forward all the set objectives. Alternatives should then be keenly compared with the objectives set to determine the extent of their relationship. Comparison would help in the selection of the most promising alternatives that are likely to facilitate the achievement of the goals set by managers. Effective and thorough comparison because it would help managers determine the best alternatives that would help the organization meet its goals at the lowest costs possible and highest profit levels.
After successful comparison, managers should then choose an alternative. This step comes after intensive comparison of the various alternatives that could help the organization achieve its goals. It entails the selection of a course of action that the organization is going to pursue in the achievement of its objectives. Selection of a course of action is vital because it helps managers to narrow down their focus on a particular issue that would lead to the achievement of desired objectives. The alternative chosen should be the most profitable of all the other alternatives forgone.
Formulation of supporting plans is another vital step in the process of organizational planning. Supporting plans include the purchase of appropriate equipment, raw materials, and hiring and training workers to carry out particular duties within the organization. These supporting plans would help in the pursuit of the alternative chosen hence leading to the achievement of the set objectives.
Lastly, managers should develop budgets that reflect their expenditure on the chosen alternative. Budgets should be prepared in order to ensure that resources are effectively allocated and used appropriately according to the needs. The budget should reflect expenditure on materials and capital equipment and the profits that the organization is likely to derive from the set alternative.
In conclusion, planning is a crucial process for the success of any organization. The entire process should be keenly followed in order to achieve the set objectives. The process involves identification of opportunities in the environment, setting objectives, consideration of a planning premises, identification of alternatives, comparison of alternatives, selection of the best alternative, formulation of supporting plans, and the development of budgets. Managers should keenly adhere to the steps of planning in order to ensure that all the objectives set are achieved and the organization is able to survive competition in the environment. Planning is inevitable in organizations that require to satisfy all their stakeholders.