A strategy is an array of policies, purpose, programs and projects, actions and decisions that help make up an organization (Stryker, 2012). Strategic planning is, therefore, is an organizational process that defines strategy or direction and decision making pertaining resource allocation to pursue the strategy. It is also inclusive of control methods and mechanisms which guide the implementation of the policy. Strategic planning is, therefore, a very crucial process as it provides a blueprint of where a company is heading over the next year or more and how it is going to reach there (Bryson, 2011).
It is interesting to learn that strategic planning is a creative process that requires the use of up-to-date techniques for it to provide useful results (Stryker, 2012). It is like art. Time has seen strategic planning evolve from traditional planning techniques with sophisticated planning methods. Bryson outlines a five-step strategic planning procedure and can result in an effective plan. It is interesting to note that the steps must be followed systematically and none super cedes the other regarding importance. The success of one step determines the success of the following action and subsequent success of the entire planning process (Bryson, 2011)
The new lessons are now vivid after reading the text. The first one is that goal made equal the results achieved. Strategic planning in organizations increases the chances of long-term success as well as rises the ability to adapt to business challenges. Institutions with no clear-cut goals lack objectivity and have less productivity. The second lesson is that planning creates a competitive edge for the organization in the market. There exists a powerful link between the strategic plan and organizational success (Bryson, 2011). Planning lays the framework for developing security strategies required to survive in highly competitive markets. The third lesson learned is that strategic plan helps to save time. Research done by Author Brian Tracy shows that one minute of planning saves ten minutes of execution. Planning saves lots of time which would otherwise be invested in other business ventures (Bryson, 2011).
Before reading the texts, I had a misconception that the making of an effective strategic plan was an easy task that requires a short time to plan and implement and that it was the work of the leading management to do so. Contrary to my belief, strategic planning is a broad task with several steps to take and that it requires the efforts input and discipline of all stakeholders within an organization for it to be successful (Stryker, 2012).
The world can be viewed as one big institution which many organizations have woven together and linked with communication channels, shared markets, and personnel. The success of one school influences the success of the others and subsequent success of the world (Bryson, 2011). What I have learned will go a long way in shaping my behavior in future especially in the running and managing organizations. I have equipped myself with knowledge and power on how to formulate and implement successful strategies.
All in all, it is clear that strategic planning is the backbone of every organization. The strength of the plans made and their focus on the urgent organizational needs determines the success of the strategies. Teams must also be flexible and ready to implement change when it is necessary (Bryson, 2011)
Bryson, J. M. (2011). Strategic planning for public and nonprofit organizations: A guide to strengthening and sustaining organizational achievement. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Stryker, S. C. (2012). Plan to succeed: A guide to strategic planning. Lanham, Md: Government Institutes.
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