What Is A Strategic Plan In Business

Strategic planning is a process and thus has inputs, activities, outputs and outcomes. It may be formal or informal and is typically iterative, with feedback loops throughout the process.

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A strategy describes how the ends (goals) will be achieved by the means (resources).

The senior leadership of an organization is generally tasked with determining strategy.

Simply extending financial statement projections into the future without consideration of the competitive environment is a form of financial planning or budgeting, not strategic planning.

In business, the term "financial plan" is often used to describe the expected financial performance of an organization for future periods.

Strategy can be planned (intended) or can be observed as a pattern of activity (emergent) as the organization adapts to its environment or competes.

Strategy includes processes of formulation and implementation; strategic planning helps coordinate both.

Strategic planning provides inputs for strategic thinking, which guides the actual strategy formation.

Typical strategic planning efforts include the evaluation of the organization's mission and strategic issues to strengthen current practices and determine the need for new programming.

The organization may use a variety of methods of measuring and monitoring progress towards the strategic objectives and measures established, such as a balanced scorecard or strategy map.

Companies may also plan their financial statements (i.e., balance sheets, income statements, and cash flows) for several years when developing their strategic plan, as part of the goal-setting activity.

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