Strategic planning

How should strategic planning be done? Unfortunately there is no right answer on this. Some commentators think any strategic planning is virtually impossible in a constantly changing and unpredictable environment – there's an interesting article on this called Strategic Planning in a Turbulent Environment: Evidence from the Oil Majors, by Robert M. Grant, in Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 24, No. 6 (Jun., 2003).

Generally speaking, organizations do feel they 'should' do strategic plans and it is the prevailing culture of the organization that both dictates the approach and is also influenced by the approach. Considerations around the strategic planning process and its effectiveness include:

• How formal/informal is the strategic planning process?
• Who should be involved in it?
• How is consensus achieved in the strategic planning process, and by whom, without sacrificing the goals and objectives of the organization?
• What level (if any) of employee or other stakeholder involvement is sought in the strategic planning process?
• What should the focus of ongoing strategic planning be?
• Who has responsibility for reviewing, evaluating, and 'signing off' on the strategic plan?
• How does the strategic plan gets disseminated and to whom?
• How will the plan be kept up to date, adaptive, and dynamic?

Since most systems models of organization design include reference to strategy it presupposes that a strategic plan to deliver the strategy is there – but before starting on an organization design or re-design that's something to check.