The Nature and Purpose of Planning - Review Notes

Every manager has to select objectives for his enterprise, department, section, unit or group. Based on the objectives he has to set goals for a specific period and make plans that contain ways of reaching the set goals. Planning in general is explained as generating alternatives and selection of the most suitable alternatives from among them for solving a problem. The problem in this context has positive connotation also. How to achieve growth is a problem which has a positive implication only.

Therefore planning is deciding in advance what to do, how to do it, when to do it, and who is to it.

Types of Plans

Objectives

Objectives are the ends toward which the activity of an organization is aimed.

Goals

Goals represent the rate at which objectives of an organization are achieved. Goals quantify the objective with a time frame. For example, if a country has the objective of switching to unconventional sources of energy, the goals could specified as so many gigawatts of energy by end of year 2012.

Values



Grand strategies

According to R.N. Anthony strategies result from the processes of deciding "on objectives of the organization", "on changes in these objectives", "on the resources used to attain these objectives", and "on policies that are to govern the acquisition, use, and disposition of these resources." The main meaning and usefulness of grand strategies are to describe a type of planning program of a broad nature which gives over-all direction to the other and more detailed programs of an enterprise.

The emphasis in grand strategies is on the pattern of basic objectives of the organization and goals and the major policies and plans for achieving them.

The purpose of grand strategy of an enterprise is to determine and communicate, through a system of major objectives and policies, a picture of what kind of enterprise is envisioned. A framework is given in the grand strategy which is a useful plan to guide company thinking.

Koontz and O'Donnell give the opinion that strategy is not a new type of plan actually. It is a program. But the concept of strategy is practically very useful and its importance in guiding detailed planning justify its separation as a different type of plan.

Competitive strategies

Competition exists where two or more persons strive for the same goals under conditions in which not all can gain from them. Competitive strategy is a plan made in the light of the plans of a competitor. The plans are made either with an estimate of plans or competitor or plan is a reaction to the strategic move of competitor either announced or executved. To estimate the competitor's plans, a manager has to put himself in his competitor's place and develop a set of plans for his competitor, using the knowledge has regarding the objectives and the circumstances in which the competitor is operating. No doubt some industrial espionage will be tried to get an understanding of competitor's plans.

Policies

Policies are general statements which guide or channel thinking in decision making of subordinates. Policies delimit an area within which a decision is to be made and assure that the decision will be consistent with and contribute to objectives. Policies tend to predecide issues, and avoid repeated analysis. Polices are based on analysis and once pronounced avoid repeated analysis

Procedures

Procedures are plans and they establish a method of handling activities. They specify a chronological sequence of required actions.


Rules

A rule is the simplest type of plan. A rule requires that a specific and definite action be taken or not taken with respect to a situation.

Programs

A program is a complex of policies, procedures, rules, task assignments assembled to carry out a given course of action. A program is supported by necessary capital and operating budgets.

Budgets

A budget is a plan. It is a statement of expected results expressed in numerical terms.
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2 comments:

  1. We have already been introduced to five essential managerial functions, namely, planning, organizing, staffing, leading and controlling. This is also the widely accepted conceptual framework of management.

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