The most harmful function of management is planning. Management must decide in advance what are the goals of the organization and the ways to achieve them before it can use its human, financial and material resources effectively. Let’s discover together the principles of planning and the foundations of its success.
An organized and purposeful effort is not possible without it, which leads to chaos, confusion and waste of resources. Planning involves defining business goals, developing strategies to achieve them, scheduling and scheduling actions, and assigning responsibilities for their completion. The planning and development process precedes all other efforts and actions, as plans and programs determine the type of decisions and activities that will lead to achieving the desired goals. In addition to organizing, staffing, directing and controlling, this function is central to all other managerial functions.
Planned activities allow us to understand what activities we need, how they should be integrated into functions and departments, and who should have responsibility Make decision work, and how different activities and decisions should be coordinated. Without organization, in which the above managerial activities are involved, there can be no employees, and no direction can be carried out. In addition to providing criteria for evaluating performance, planning is necessary to perform the control function. All managerial jobs start with planning.
Planning is the process of determining how the organization will get where it wants to go, and what it will do to achieve its goals.
Planning is the systematic development of work programs that aim to reach agreed upon business goals through the process of analysis, evaluation and selection from expected opportunities.
Developing and facilitating the achievement of organizational goals and objectives is the aim and purpose of the plans and their components. To achieve organizational goals more effectively and economically, long-term plans need to be intertwined with medium-term plans, which in turn need to be linked with short-term plans.
Following are the principles of planning in management:
We know that every organization or company has some pre-determined goals and objectives.
According to this principle, each plan and sub-plan must make positive contributions towards achieving the goals and objectives of the enterprise.
The planning principle shows that planning is related to the near future and present, there are several assumptions.
Hence, while formulating plans, complete, clear and reliable knowledge should be gathered and forecasts prepared well.
Planning efficiency depends on results.
This principle shows that maximum results should be obtained from minimum cost and effort.
If this does not become possible, or objectives are not achieved efficiently, it may be seen as inefficiency in planning.
This planning principle tells that goals and objectives are the first activity.
Without planning, other functions of management do not get proper direction, and their efficient and effective performance does not become possible.
Hence, planning is the important and primary function of management, which should be given attention, as a matter of priority.
According to this tenet of these planning principles, plans should be flexible. Flexibility means change as needed.
Flexible plans can be revised, according to changing requirements and losses can be avoided or reduced.
Therefore, the layout should be such that it can be changed and revised, according to the circumstances. This principle is used for long-term planning.
This planning principle centers on the fact that just as a sailor is attentive to take his boat to destination, by regularly paying attention to the speed, direction and balance of the boat at every moment.
Likewise, managers must continue to test plants, as they are being carried out, and the required changes and improvements must be an ongoing process.
This principle defines the “time period” for planning.
According to this principle of planning planning must necessarily be at least we for that period, which is required to fulfill the obligations undertaken with its employees, suppliers, debtors, consumers, etc.
This principle is explained by the fact that planning is a widespread activity, which is required at all levels of business management.
Hence, planning should be in accordance with the needs of all levels of management.
Policies mean those general principles that govern the functions of the organization to achieve its objectives.
This principle of policy setting specifies that the policies of the enterprise should be clear, simple, sound and justified, to make its planning effective.
Besides, planning components must also be considered.
This planning principle focuses on the point that while setting the goals of the enterprise, the time limit for achieving the various goals can also be well defined.
Plans, sub-plans and programs should also be prepared to achieve the objectives.
Their time limits also need to be basically defined.
The success of planning depends on the right decision made.
Hence, before putting forward decisions, various alternatives must be discovered and necessary information collected about them, and then the best alternative must be chosen.
According to this principle, the best that may contribute to achieving the set goals on time and at the lowest cost is selected.
This principle of planning states that managers should identify factors that have only limited achievement of desired objectives while selecting the best alternatives and appropriate solutions should be found for critical and negative factors.
In case of any competitive enterprise, the planning activities and techniques of other enterprises should also be considered.
By doing so, success in business, among competitors, may be assured.
This is the basic assertion that the success of planning depends on the cooperation of the whole organisation.
The following are some of the important objectives of planning in an organization.
Facilitate achieving goals: The aim of planning is to facilitate achievement of objectives. Focuses his attention on the objectives of the organization. Defines goals for each department in the organization and for the organization as a whole. This helps individuals see the entire organization and see how their actions contribute to its ultimate goals. Planning forces the managers to look into the future and revise its plans if needed to achieve the objectives.
Economy in operations ensures: Since planning emphasizes operational efficiency and consistency, it reduces costs and gains economical operation. Coordinated team effort, even work flow and considered decisions due to planning.
Control precedes: Control includes those activities that are carried out to force events into conformity with plans. Plans act as performance benchmarks. Control seeks to compare actual performance with established standards. Therefore control cannot be exercised without plans.
Provides for future emergencies: Planning is required because the future is uncertain. Planning enables management to look into the future and discover an appropriate alternative course of action. Planning helps the management to have a clear idea of the future and to frame an appropriate program of action. Even when the future is very uncertain, planning is essential to determine the best course of action.
Facilitates optimal use of resources: Various resources related to the organization such as funds, material resources, manpower, technological knowledge etc. are largely insufficient due to demand from competing organizations and have alternative uses. This entails the organization to make the best possible use of resources. Planning facilitates the optimal use of available resources.
Basic requirements for other administrative positions: The purposes of planning are to provide a conceptual and concrete basis for the initiation and undertaking of other managerial tasks such as staffing, organizing, directing and controlling. Planning is an essential function and it goes a long way to improve the efficiency of other management functions and makes management tasks more effective.
All inclusive functions: Planning is the job of managers at all levels although the scope, nature and extent of planning varies from organization to organization and level to level. Regardless of the level and field of his work, every manager must perform this function. Planning at the top level will be basic, broad and far reaching. Managers at other levels may plan their managerial activities for a short period.
In this regard, Theo Heymann says so
"يميل نطاق ومدى وأهمية طبيعة التخطيط إلى الانخفاض بينما ننزل نحو المستويات الأدنى للإدارة ونقترب من نقطة تنفيذ الخطة".
Coordinates activities: Coordination is an important factor for the smooth functioning of the organization. as pointed out e. c. Hicks ,
"التخطيط ينسق أنشطة المنظمة نحو أهداف محددة ومتفق عليها. البديل هو السلوك العشوائي ".
If planning is absent, different departments of the organization may pursue different goals.
Provides for delegation of authority: Planning provides for delegation of authority to subordinates. Well designed plans act as guides for subordinates and reduce the risks involved in delegation of authority.