Steps in Planning

Steps in Planning

Perception of Opportunities:
Perception of opportunities includes:
⦁ preliminary look at possible opportunities and the ability to see them clearly and completely,
⦁ knowledge of where the organisation stands in the light of its strength and weaknesses,
⦁ an understanding of why the organisation wants to solve uncertainties, and
⦁ a vision of what is expected to be gained.

Establishing Objectives:
Major organisational and unit objectives are set at this stage. They specify the results expected and indicate the end points of:
⦁ what is to be done,
⦁ where the primary emphasis is to be placed, and
⦁ what is to be accomplished by various types of plans.

Planning Premises:
Planning premises are planning assumptions – the expected environment and internal conditions. Thus planning premises are both, external as well as internal: External premises include total factors in task environment like political, social, technological, competitors’ plans and actions, government policies, etc. Internal factors include the organisation’s policies, resources of various types and the ability of the organisation to withstand the environmental pressures.

Identification of Alternatives:
At this stage, various alternatives are identified based on the organisational objectives and planning premises. The selected alternatives are then reduced so that the most promising ones may be taken for detailed analysis. The concept of various alternatives suggests that a particular objective can be achieved through various actions.

Evaluation of Alternatives:
At this stage, an attempt is made to evaluate how each alternative contributes to the organisational objectives in the light of its resources and constraints.

Choice of Alternatives:
Once the alternatives are evaluated, the one which fits best in the organisation is selected. In case, of more than one alternative fitting the organisational needs and constraints, the planner should choose more than one alternative. This provides the flexibility to the plan and the contingency plan (i.e. the alternate plan) can be implemented in changed situations.

Formulation of Supporting Plans:
Once the basic plan is formulated, various plans are derived so as to support the main plan. These derivative plans are formulated out of the main plan and, therefore, they support it.

Establishing Sequence of Activities:
After formulating the basic and derivative plans, the sequence of activities is determined so that plans are put into action.

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