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Welcome to PlanningSkills.COM

This website focuses on a wide variety of topics related to organization and individual planning situations. The primary focus is business planning.

Planning is an anticipatory decision making process that involves situation analysis, forecasting outcomes and events, evaluating alternative courses of action, anticipating consequences and considering implementation issues and contingencies. Planning often begins with asking one or more questions, for example: What if ...? Could we ...? Do we ...? Is it possible...? How should we respond ...? How can we ...? Is it feasible to ...?

In general, planning is a proactive process that is intended to help individuals, groups and organizations achieve performance objectives.

Featured Glossary Term


Policies are formal statements of an organization's practices, procedures, or intentions. Policies guide managerial decision making and actions to ensure compliance with the mission and strategy. Policies are broad, precedent-setting decisions that guide or substitute for repetitive or time-sensitive managerial decision making. A policy establishes broad limits and provides direction, but it permits some initiative and discretion. Examples of common policy areas include: customer relationship policies, human resource policies, privacy policies, and security policies. In the public sector, a policy is a broad statement of administrative law and often the intent of political leaders.

Related terms include procedure, method and rule. These terms have different degrees of scope and impact. A procedure is a sequence of steps or operations describing how to carry out an activity. It is more specific than a policy and establishes a customary way of handling a recurring activity. Thus, less discretion is permissible in its application. An example of a procedure is the sequence of steps in the routing of parts. A method establishes the manner and sequence of accomplishing a recurring, individual task. Almost no discretion is allowed. An example of a method is the set of steps in cashing a check. A rule is an established guide for conduct. Rules include definite things to do and not to do. There are no exceptions to the rules. An example of a rule is "No Smoking" or "First come, first served".

Featured Planning Tip

Planning should be linked to control Plan for control and control the plan. Plans should have measurable indicators that can assist in revising plans and evaluating outcomes.

Linked means long-term and short-term objectives should be established and then measured and tracked.

Planning and control reinforce each other. A good plan facilitates control and a good control system improves planning.

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Copyright © 2004-15 by D. J. Power (see his home page). PlanningSkills.COMsm is maintained by Alexander P. and Daniel J. Power. Please contact them at with questions. See disclaimer and privacy statement. This page was last modified on December 8, 2015.