BASIC GUIDELINES FOR SUCCESSFUL PLANNING PROCESS

Planning in its Larger Context Planning  Setting the direction for something ± some system (input. processes. people aligned and coordinated activities that would ultimately achieve the goals set. Input: Process: raw materials. Output: products and services Outcomes: benefits for consumers . outputs. outcomes) ± and then guide the system to follow the direction. money. technologies.

WHY? . project. business. etc.. the process of planning includes planners working backwards through the system. department.Whether the system is an organization.

in order to achieve some larger. or in some combination. required to implement the strategies or processes. . to achieve the goals. materials. or in some combination. overall result preferred from the system (eg. Tasks ± activities required to implement the plan (if the scope of the plan is very small. mission). or in some combination to achieve the goals in the plan. etc. technologies.Some Basic Terms in Planning Goals (output) ± specific accomplishments that must be accomplished in total. tasks and activities are often the same). money. Objectives (³milestones´ when implementing strategies) ± specific accomplishments that must be accomplished in total. Resources (input) ± people. Strategies or Activities (processes) ± methods or processes required in total.

Basic Overview of Typical Phases in Planning Whether the system is an organization. the basic planning process typically includes similar nature of activities carried out in similar sequence. NOTE: Different groups of planners might have different names for the following activities and groups them differently. . However. department. etc. project. the nature of the activities and their general sequence remains the same. business..

4.1. 3. 8. 9. 7. 5. 6. Reference overall singular purpose (³Mission´) or desired result from system Take stock outside and inside the system Analyze the situation Establish goals Establish strategies to reach goals Establish objectives along the way to achieving goals Associate responsibilities and time lines with each objective Write and communicate a plan document Acknowledge completion and celebrate success . 2.

along with representative from groups who will be effected by the plan. .Guidelines to Ensure Successful Planning and Implementation 1. get input from everyone who will be responsible to carry out parts of the plan. When planning. Common failure: plans are not implemented. Involve the right people in the planning process It¶s critical that all parts of the system continue to exchange feedback in order to function effectively.

. etc. customers. suppliers.) may request copies of various types of plans. Write down the planning information and communicate it widely Even if managers do communicate their intentions and plans verbally. chances are great that others won¶t completely hear or understand what the manager wants done. funders. management. investors.2. clients. board members. Key stakeholders (employees.

3. Goals and objectives should be SMARTER Specific  ³Write a paper´ ³Work harder´ Measurable  ³Write a 30-page paper´ ³Writing a paper´ Acceptable Realistic ³Write a 30-page paper in the next 10 seconds´ .

´ Rewarding  ³I¶m more inclined to write the paper if the paper will contribute to an effort in such a way that I might be rewarded for my effort.´  ³Write one-page a day for 30 days.´ Extending  The goal should stretch the performer¶s capabilities.´ .  ³I might be more interested in writing a 30-page paper if the topic of the paper or the way that I write it will extend my capabilities.Time frame (Time-bounded)  ³Write a 30-page paper in one week.

procedures. etc. Be sure to have someone of authority ³sign off´ on the plan. including putting their signature on the plan to indicate they agree with and support its contents. Responsible parties should regularly review status of the plan. . including goals and objectives. Include responsibilities in policies.4. Build in accountability (regularly review who¶s doing what and by when?) Plans should specify who is responsible for achieving each result. job descriptions. performance review processes.

. As important as following the plan is noticing deviations and adjusting the plan accordingly. Regularly collect feedback from participants. Evaluate planning process and the plan. During regular reviews of implementation of the plan. assess if goals are being achieved or not. It¶s critical to collect feedbacks regularly during planning process. 6. Note deviations from the plan and replan accordingly The plan is not a set of rules but it is an overall guideline.5. It is OK to deviate from it.

Recurring planning process is at least as important as plan document The real treasure of planning is the planning process NOT the plan document. discussion. reflection. During planning. Conducting ongoing communications around the documents is as important as putting emphasis on written codes of ethics and codes of conduct. Ongoing communications are what sensitize people to understanding and following the values and behaviors suggested on the codes. planners learn a great deal from ongoing analysis.7. . and dialogue around issues and goals in the system. debates.

.8. Nature of the process should be compatible to nature of planners Critical ± but frequently missing step ± acknowledgement and celebration of results 9.

.END Questions? Clarifications? Reactions? HAVE A NICE DAY! .

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