Planning is the basic function of management. its preparation is directly influenced by the characteristics of the enterprise and the conditions which affect its operation. In its preparation the following steps are required to be take.
1. Being aware of opportunities:
The awareness of an opportunity is the real starting point for planning. It includes a preliminary look at possible future opportunities and the ability to see theme clearly and completely. Knowledge of where we stand an understanding of why we wish to solve uncertainties and a vision of what we expect to gain. Setting realistic objectives depends on this awareness. planning requires realistic diagnosis of the opportunity situation.
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2. Establishing Objectives:
This is another step in planning to established objectives for the entire enterprise and then for each subordinate’s unit. Planning focuses attention on some distinct future and its accomplishment is all that the plans desire. Objectives indicate what basically is to be done. Where the primary emphasis is to be placed and what is to be accomplished.
3. Establishing planning premises:
This is another important step in planning which may serve as background against which estimated events effecting the planning will take place. Planning requires that assumptions be made regarding future happenings so that facts are only analyzed. Planning premises determines future settings and greatly help the planner to keep his attention within the relevant limits.
4. Determining alternative course of action:
One the objectives are established and the background to work is prepared the next teps in planning is to search for alternative course of action. There is seldom a plan for which reasonable alternative do not exist. Before one of the courses finally selected for incorporating in the plan, it is highly essential that the planner finds out as many possible alternatives as he can, so that all of the get his attention.
5. Evaluating alternative course of action:
After determining possible alternative course of action; and examined their strong and weak points, the fifth step in planning is to evaluate and examine each of them in detail. Their advantages and disadvantages are studied, strong and weak points properly weighed. Such evaluation helps the planner in having a complete picture of each alternative in the light of its effectiveness and gain.
6.Selecting a course of action:
Once each alternative is thoroughly examined, it becomes easy for the planner to make a choice form amongst them. The sixth planning step, therefore refers to selecting the course of action to be included in the plan. This is the real decision making step and required a great amount of balanced judgment with this step apparently the job of planning ends but actually it is not so and one more step has to be taken by the planner.
7.Formulating derivative plan:
Planning is seldom complete, if it does not carry the arrangement for derivative or supporting plans major or main plan cannot be successful alone unless it gets due support from subsidiary. supporting or derivation plans. The main plan, in order to be effective, requires detailed description action to be take, its timing, place and the person to be responsible for it. It may involve certain derivative plans which may be needed to make the main plan to accomplish the objectives desired by it. Hence It is essential for the planner to work out such derivative plan, their timing place and positive contribution right at the very outset (bringing of planning. it is, therefore the last but important step in planning.