Strategic Planning is a Contradiction in Terms
When we work in the planning mode we start off anchored in the current reality of today’s organization (1) and we project into the future constrained by all the associated limitations and restrictions. Working like this we arrive at the incremental future organization (2) that will not be so different from today’s organization. For this reason, “strategy” done from a planning focus often fails. Doing planning is not the same as doing strategy and therefore “strategic planning” is a contradiction in terms.
Graphic Representation of Planning
True strategy, on the other hand, is done by moving in the opposite direction. First, the envisioned future organization (3) becomes the goal, without regard to the constraints of the current organization, which then becomes yesterday’s organization (4). The mental process is precisely the reverse of that used when doing planning. We start the process with the vision of the future organization, liberated of the current limitation and constraints, and we determine what needs to be changed to turn that vision into reality.
Graphic Representation of Strategy
These diagrams have been adapted from the book The Great Big Book of Process Visuals written by Dr. Alan Weiss
Managing Director, Alba Consulting
Supply chain excellence to accelerate the growth of our clients’ businesses
Author of the book International Supply Chain Relationships:
Creating Competitive Advantage in a Globalized Economy