Characteristics of Planning

1. Planning is goal-oriented.

  • Planning is made to achieve desired objective of business.
  • The goals established should general acceptance otherwise individual efforts & energies will go misguided and misdirected.
  • Planning identifies the action that would lead to desired goals quickly & economically.
  • It provides sense of direction to various activities. E.g. Maruti Udhyog is trying to capture once again Indian Car Market by launching diesel models.

2. Planning is looking ahead.

  • Planning is done for future.
  • It requires peeping in future, analyzing it and predicting it.
  • Thus planning is based on forecasting.
  • A plan is a synthesis of forecast.

It is a mental predisposition for things to happen in future.

 

3. Planning is an intellectual process.

  • Planning is a mental exercise involving creative thinking, sound judgement and imagination.
  • It is not a mere guesswork but a rotational thinking.
  • A manager can prepare sound plans only if he has sound judgement, foresight and imagination.
  • Planning is always based on goals, facts and considered estimates.

4. Planning involves choice & decision making.

  • Planning essentially involves choice among various alternatives.
  • Therefore, if there is only one possible course of action, there is no need planning because there is no choice.
  • Thus, decision making is an integral part of planning.
  • A manager is surrounded by no. of alternatives. He has to pick the best depending upon requirements & resources of the enterprises.

5. Planning is the primary function of management / Primacy of Planning.

  • Planning lays foundation for other functions of management.
  • It serves as a guide for organizing, staffing, directing and controlling.
  • All the functions of management are performed within the framework of plans laid out.
  • Therefore planning is the basic or fundamental function of management.

6. Planning is a Continuous Process.

  • Planning is a never ending function due to the dynamic business environment.
  • Plans are also prepared for specific period f time and at the end of that period, plans are subjected to revaluation and review in the light of new requirements and changing conditions.
  • Planning never comes into end till the enterprise exists issues, problems may keep cropping up and they have to be tackled by planning effectively.

7. Planning is all Pervasive.

  • It is required at all levels of management and in all departments of enterprise.
  • Of course, the scope of planning may differ from one level to another.
  • The top level may be more concerned about planning the organization as a whole whereas the middle level may be more specific in departmental plans and the lower level plans implementation of the same.

8. Planning is designed for efficiency.

  • Planning leads to accompishment of objectives at the minimum possible cost.
  • It avoids wastage of resources and ensures adequate and optimum utilization of resources.
  • A plan is worthless or useless if it does not value the cost incurred on it.
  • Therefore planning must lead to saving of time, effort and money.
  • Planning leads to proper utilization of men, money, materials, methods and machines.

9. Planning is Flexible.

  • Planning is done for the future.
  • Since future is unpredictable, planning must provide enough room to cope with the changes in customer’s demand, competition, govt. policies etc.
  • Under changed circumstances, the original plan of action must be revised and updated to male it more practical.
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