This essay shall explore planning as a function of management. Accordingly, its definition and importance shall be provided. In addition, the various elements of planning shall also be explored. The relation between planning and organizing will be examined as well, in addition to an assessment of the relationship between planning and leading.
Planning refers to a process that leads to the attainment of a purpose. Planning has often been taken as an outline that defines the growth of a business (Kotler & Cohen 2002 p. 13). The planning process is very important in business, as it assists in the recognition of otherwise hidden opportunities, in addition to helping an organization to avoid mistakes that could prove costly in the long run (Gomez-Mejia, Balkin & Cardy 2009 p. 19). It is important therefore for organizations to ensure that they prepare satisfactory plans. Through the planning process, the management of an organization can identify its mission and vision, in line with the established core values of such an organization. It is also an indication that the management is in full control of its products, finances, management, competition, and the market. As a process in management, planning helps an organization to properly define achievable goals for its future performance.
Furthermore, the planning process enables the management of an organization to decide on those resources and tasks that require being put to use, as a way of achieving the set-out goals. Strategic planning entails an assessment of the fundamental goals that an organization has put in place; along with the allocation of resources to these objectives to ensure that they are realized (Kotler & Cohen 2002 p. 134). At times, a large gap could be realized between, on the one hand, an organization’s strategic plan and on the other hand, the actual results that are realized once the plan is executed. Human resource forms a crucial part of any strategic plan and the desired organizational performance and is, therefore, an important tool to the planning process.
Elements of planning
There are fundamental elements that constitute the planning process. To start with, it begins with a clear definition of the goals of the process. Next, a planning process has to properly identify the key issues that require being addressed in the actual execution of the plan. It is also necessary to ensure that the past performance of, for example, an organization, is reviewed. A planning process also has to decide on the finances that could be involved (Gomez-Mejia, Balkin & Cardy 2009 p. 21). Another element of the planning process is an assessment of the requirements of the actual plans, in addition to the modes that are necessary to enable the achievement of these requirements. There is also the issue of the structure of the plan in question, along with the type of such a plan. It is also important to identify any foreseeable shortcomings that could come about due to the planning concept itself. Finally, planning has to involve the strategies needed to ensure that its implementation is smooth.
Relation between Planning and organizing
A plan indicates assist in contingencies reduction of an organization, moving on to the future. Planning enables an organization to effectively and efficiently utilize its existing resources. It is also a requirement for the different management levels of an organization. Since planning entails the vision of an organization, it can therefore be regarded as an organization’s roadmap into the future, because it assists such an organization to assist its vision. It helps an organization to move from where it is at the moment, to a predestined position in the future, and therefore plays a significant role in the success of an organization. On the other hand, organizing involves the pooling of an organization’s physical, human and financial resources, to help such an organization attain the objectives that it has set out, within the confines of the already existing climate and structure in such an organization (Morden 2004 p. 15). Before an organization can plan for its future activities, it must first have in place a plan to follow. Accordingly, the organization may be seen as a process that helps an organization implement its plans. Nonetheless, organizing has to govern the plans of a firm, in the process helping us to realize the future direction of an organization. All in all, planning and organization are processes that ensure an organization is ready to face future challenges.
Relationship between Planning and leading
The relationship between leading and planning is that whereas leading places emphasis on influencing people, planning, on the other hand, is concerned with the other resources of the organization, in addition to human resources. In an organization, it is the responsibility of leaders to ensure that the plans are implemented and followed, to realize the set goals and objectives through sound leadership (Morden 2004 p. 15). A good leader ensures that he/she follows the plans that have been established to assist in achieving the goals and objectives of an organization. With solid planning and in the absence of an effective leader, an organization may be unable to achieve the goals and objectives that they have set out. Effective leading leads to empowered employees, and they, in turn, facilitates in the proper and timely execution of the goals and objectives of a company.
Gomez-Mejia, L. R, Balkin, D. B, & Cardy, R. L., 2008, Management: People, Performance, Change (3rd edition). New York, New York USA: McGraw-Hill.
Kotler, J. P, & Cohen, D. S., 2002, The heart of change. Boston: Harvard Business School Publishing.
Morden, T., 2004, Principles of management. Aldershot, Hamphere, UK: Ashgate Publishing Ltd.