The process of planning involves the following steps
Analysing environment. At the outset the internal and external environment is analyzed in order to identify company ;s strengths and weaknesses (in internal environment)and opportunities and threats (existing in the external environment) this is also known as SWOT (Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities and Threats ) analysis .
Establishing objectives or goals in the light of the environmental scanning (study)clear or probable opportunities that can be availed are identified in order to avail them objectives or goals are clearly defined in specific terms along with priorities in all the key areas of operations major problems associated with such objectives are also identified and defined ,so that there may be special emphasis on their planned solutions.
Seeking necessary Information :
All relevant data and facts are collected from internal and external sources such as Availability of supplies, physical and human recourses of the company , finance of disposal, relevant government policy etc then such collected information and factors are analyzed. These information can be used in two ways
To make necessary modifications in objective and goals
To take help them in premising assumption.
Establishing the planing premises
In order to develop consistent and coordinate plans ,it is necessary that planing is based upon carefully considered assumption and predictions
Identifying the alternative course of action.
After established the goals or objective and taking other related steps , feasible alternative programs or course of action are searched out . Impossible or highly difficult propositions are left out .
Evaluating the alternatives.
Problems consequences of each alternative course of action in terms of its pros and cons (eg Cost, benefits, risks etc) are assessed and then relative importance of each of them is found out by looking at their overall individual strengths and limitations especially in the light of present objective and the environment of the company.
Selecting the alternative or Course of action.
The alternative which appears to be most feasible and conducive to the accomplishment of company’s objective, is selecting the final plan of action as strategy.