Internet Article Summary: Strategic Planning University of Phoenix MGT 330: Management: Theory, Practice, & Application

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Strategic Planning

In the article, Strategy from the Porch, the author illustrates an interesting approach to the planning process. "Planning involves setting goals and identifying the courses of action for achieving those goals. It therefore also requires identifying opportunities and threats, and balancing these with the strengths and weaknesses of the enterprise" (Dessler, 2001,p.52). As the first key function of what managers do, planning is critical to the success of the organization. In the article, strategic planning is compared to the process of checking the weather. Conventionally, the weather can be verified via television or radio broadcasts, the internet and or the newspaper. The alternative discussed is the process of walking outside, "stopping for a few minutes on (the) porch on the way to picking up the newspaper" (Solovy, 2000,para.1). It is on this journey that one can feel the "cool breeze" (Solovy, 2000,para.1), see and feel the sun and notice the placement and composition of the clouds.

Gathering this information, one can determine the next step in planning for the day. Are the clouds light and patchy? Are they thick and dark and will an umbrella be necessary? Although there are better methods to check the weather, sometimes it is necessary to "step out on the porch" (Solovy, 2000,para.4). Managers sometimes neglect to do just this. There are three key elements to this porch strategy. They will be defined, explored and discussed as they correspond to my current organization.

Heart of the Company

According to Solovy (2000) "there are three key elements to strategic planning: the heart, the head and the gut. Each is critical to success" (para. 5). The heart symbolizes the overall mission of the business. "It's the practice of testing the organizational plans against the vision, history and mission of the organization" (para. 6) All strategies...