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Strategic Planning Kit For Dummies Paperback – November 15, 2011
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From the Back Cover
Are you a business owner or management professional looking to weather current economic storms while planning for future growth? Providing practical, field-tested techniques and a complete 6-phase plan, Strategic Planning Kit For Dummies shows you how to make strategy a habit for all organizations, no matter the size, type, or resource constraints.
Strategic Planning 101 — get plain-English explanations of the who, how, why, and when of strategic planning
The nuts and bolts — discover your core DNA, identify your strategic issues, find your competitive advantage, and develop your mission, vision, and values
Collect your data — gather information that's critical for your strategic decision making, assess your business and its capabilities, and see your company through your customers' eyes
Pave a clear path — plan for the future, determine how to grow and be sustainable, and identify and evaluate opportunities
Open the book and find:
Why strategic planning works
The elements of a strategic management process
How to establish clear goals and measure your progress
Ways to execute your plan
Tips to find new customers
How to plan for what-ifs
Strategies for growth and sustainability
Interactive tools and templates available on the bonus CD-ROM for individual and group exercises designed to help guide you through each step of the strategic planning process.
Please see the CD appendix for details and complete system requirements.
Be agile in a continually shifting environment while planning for long-term sustainability
Make strategy a habit for all organizations
Improve efficiency, focus, and execution
Worksheets and templates on the bonus CD-ROM
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
If you are looking for a book on the latest MBA ideas, this is not it (as its name implies). But it's ideal for someone with a small organization to run, who doesn't want to get knee deep in planning as a hobby, but needs practical help. Good work.
What is the book about. Quickly to summarize in the author's own words (Page 1): "This book is about getting from Point A to Point B more effectively and having more fun along the way. Part of that journey is the strategy and part of it is the planning, development, and execution."
The book features 20 chapters and has a CD that can help understand and use basic tools of planning. To illustrate, consider SWOT analysis. This is an evaluation of the internal aspects of an organization--its strengths and weaknesses. There is also an external evaluation of opportunities and threats. Hence, SWOT--strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The CD provides a template for SWOT.
There is discussion, too, of other aspects of strategic planning, such as benchmarking.
In short, a reasonably good introduction to strategic planning in the business world.
My main takeaway from the book is that the plan has to have an action to do list and there have to be people accountable to make it happened and the person in charge of the plan has to have someone they are accountable to. The people have to buy in from the get-go otherwise is a major waste of time and money-that includes the board.
There are so many gems that I got from this book so I will highlight the main ones:
Write a one, three and five year plan with all the details from day one to the day you achieve your goals
Celebrate small wins along the way
At least once a month review the plan -never cancel it will destroy the momentum
Have people accountable including you who is overseeing the plan
and have a brain trust of people you trust and admire to monitor the progress of the plan
Have changes and worse case scenario in the plan, change is part of the plan and
have alternative plans: plan 1 plan 2 plan 3 -things change so be ready to adapt and change too
Analyzing your time for a week and see where you can cut time out on low priority things and concentrate on the big picture i.e strategic plan.
As you can see there are so many insights that I discovered and one of the recommendations which I like is don't try to do everything in the book but get one main idea from each chapter and implement it.
Again, I loved this book and I highly recommend it.
This book is probably a one-stop theoretical book for someone who wants to learn more about business ideas, and is more like a textbook that a student uses to study for Business Administration or Organization Development. It basically combines both information into a book that is useful for someone who has little or no background in Business Studies, and will be useful to someone who does not have a corporate background.
I was not too impressed with the software that was provided as the templates were based on the information that could be found in the book and could fairly easily be typed onto a template or be incorporated into the book in the first place. I was hoping that they have templates either in the form of Word or Excel where you could make changes - something more dynamic than a PDF file.
However, it has some useful videos links for people who may not have the time to run through the chapters and instead opt for a audio-visual experience provided. Again, these videos are based on theories that are in the book and are the typical facilitation sessions that one will receive while working in a corporation.
Overall, I would say that this book is good for someone who:
(a) has no business studies background and wants to have some business/marketing knowledge.
(b) is working in a corporate setting and wants to understand the business culture of the organization.
(c) intends to have a small business - some ideas like SWOT analysis, competitor analysis etc are quite useful.
(d) a facilitator or CON-SELLtant who wishes to sell their solutions to their audience.
(e) a job-seeker who wants to sound intelligent during an interview.