Defining Strategy, Planning and Execution
Strategy, planning, and execution are three co-incident determinants of a company or business units ultimate output, its results. Aligning the organizations work teams with your most important objectives is a never-ending battle. It is also quite difficult to implement a poor strategy well and doubly difficult to produce excellent results with a poor strategy thats being poorly implemented. And, yes, of course, having a great corporate or business strategy is no guarantee of great results either; you still have to plan and execute well.
Strategy formulation refers to the process of choosing the most appropriate course of action for the realization of organizational goals and objectives and thereby achieving the organizational vision.
Strategic planning is an organizational management activity that is used to set priorities, focus energy and resources, strengthen operations, establish agreement around intended outcomes/results, and assess and adjust the organization's direction in response to a changing environment.
Strategic Execution is a specific set of behaviors and techniques that companies need to master in order to have competitive advantage. Its a discipline of its own.
Alignment of Strategy and Planning
According to the Harvard Business Review, 40% of all investments are wasted due to a lack of alignment between strategy formulation and effective planning.
Alignment of strategy and planning would accomplish the main objectives of
Ensuring strong connection among the organizations mission and its operational resources
Fine tuning departmental goals and objectives
Addressing issues that may exist around internal efficiencies and effectiveness.
The above objectives can be achieved by Outlining the organizations mission, programs, resources, and needed support areas Identifying whats working well and what needs to be adjusted Identifying how these adjustments should be made and determining the best approach Including the adjustments as strategies in the strategic plan and road map with an alignment path
Alignment of Planning and Execution
Even though, in reality, there may be a separation of planning and execution tasks, the two are highly interdependent. Planning affects execution. The execution of strategy, in turn, affects changes to strategy and planning over time. This relationship between planning and doing, suggests two critical points to keep in mind.
Successful strategic outcomes are best achieved when those responsible for execution are also part of the planning or formulation process. The greater the interaction between doers and planners and the greater the overlap of the two processes or tasks the higher the probability of execution success.