Preparing the strategic plan - Strategic Management

Preparing the strategic plan

In this chapter we will check the how and when a written plan is useful. For many, the preparation of strategic plans will present few difficulties. There are others who find the task of translating concepts into plans a daunting one. Strategic planning is a tool for organizing the present on the basis of theprojections of the desired future.

That is, a strategic plan is a road map to lead an organization from where it is now to where it would like to be in five or ten years. It is necessary to have a strategic plan for your chapter or division. In order to develop a comprehensive plan for your chapter or division which would include both long- range and strategic elements, we suggest the methods and mechanisms outlined in this manual.
The plan must be:

  • simple
  • written
  • clear
  • based on the real current situation
  • have enough time allowed to give it a time to settle. It should not be rushed. Rushing the plan will cause problem

A good place to start is with the types of strategic plans that might be prepared. Some planners suggest that the strategic plan should show the broad outline strategy. Each major element should then be treated in greater detail in separate plans dealing with acquisition, diversification, divestment, and research and development. Plans should be presented in a way which makes them easy to read and handle.

Nothing is worse than the business document (of any kind) which physically falls to pieces whenever it is used. Plans are meant to be used. It is also a mistake to present them too well. Charts and diagrams also help understanding, and can link into visual aids used in presenting and discussing the plan. Decision trees have already been suggested, and may be augmented by graphs and histograms. Portfolio and risk matrices are of immeasurable value for complex organisations.

The key principle is to keep to what is useful and not to chart facts which have little impact on the decisions involved. The idea is not to produce a child’s guide, with a picture on every page, but a usable business document. There can be no firm rules about what items should make up the content of a strategic plan, although I should recommend that the following at least be considered.

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