The Planning School (CH3)

1. The foundation of the Planning School is formal process. The central message of the planning school fits a large business or big government practices of “formal procedure, formal training, formal analysis, and lots of numbers.” (48).

2. The models diagram was written by George Steiner in the book, Top Management Planning.  Other writers such as Ansoff and Peter Lorange were also proponents of the school (48-49).

3. The basic model of the Planning School consists of the following parts (49-57):

                1. The Objective-Setting Stage: extensive procedures for explicating and qualifying the goals of the

Organization (49).

2. The External Audit Stage: predict and prepare for external threats and opportunities .

3. The Internal Audit Stage: strength and weaknesses are subjected and decomposed.

4. The Strategy Evaluation Stage: elaboration and qualification of the past stages.

5. The Strategy Operationalization Stage: DETAILS! And hierarchies are established.

6. Scheduling the Process: creating timetables and planning to plan.

4. Premises of the model (58):

                1. Strategies result from controlled and concise processes of formal planning.

                2. Responsibility for the process is given to the chief executives.

                3. Strategies detailed attention to objectives, processes, budgets, programs, etc.

5. Criticisms of the Planning School (59- 77):

                1. Predetermination: With the ever changing business environment it is next to impossible to plan out a

strategy. Planning School Says: Planning allows corporations to prepare for the future not plan out the


                2. Detachment: Managers are unattached to what is happening below them. Planning School says: Managers

must manage by remote control.

                3. Formalization: too formal and rigid. Planning School Says: Formalization is necessary in strategy but

distinguishing the difference between viable support and intrusive control is important.

4. Strategic Planning: strategic planning has never been strategy making. Planning School Says: Strategic planning should be called strategic programming.

6. The Planning School contributes a stability and controllability to a strategy. Planners can act as “catalyists” to promote formal planning as some kind of essential element. Planners are important to the overall strategy formation for the structure and program they initiate.


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