The nature of planning can be understood by examining its four major aspects.
They are; Since plans are made to attain goals or objectives, every plan and all its support should contribute to the achievement of the organization’s purpose and objectives.
It may also be treated as a process of thinking before doing.
Management has to plan for long-range and short-range future direction by looking ahead into the future, by estimating and evaluating the future behavior of the relevant environment and by determining the enterprise’s own desired role.
It also involves thinking about past events (retrospectively) and about future opportunities and impending threats (prospectively).
Define Planning In Business
Planning enquirers about organizational strengths and weaknesses and involves decision making about desired ways and means to achieve them.Because of one’s authority or position in the managerial hierarchy, one may do more or less planning, but some kind or amount of planning a manager must do.According to Weihrich and Koontz; “All managers, from presidents to first-level supervisors – plan.”Plans should not only be effective, but also efficient.So planning will also define all the future functions of management. We have already been introduced to five essential managerial functions, namely, planning, organizing, staffing, leading and controlling.Planning is a unique and universal function of all managers.The character and scope of planning may vary with each manager’s authority and with the nature of the policies and plans outlined by superiors, but all managers must have some function of planning.This is also the widely accepted conceptual framework of management.Planning involves selecting missions and objectives and the actions to achieve them; it requires decision making, which is choosing from among alternative future courses of action.– Weihrich and Koontz It is, therefore, a rational approach to achieving pre-selected objectives.Goals represent an end state — the targets and results that managers hope to achieve.Action statements represent the means by which an organization goes ahead to attain its goals.