The Planning Function of Management

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The Planning Function of Management Management Planning The planning function of management provides goals, strategies, direction, and it defines responsibilities in any organization. The types of plans include strategic, operational, tactical, and contingency. Each one of these types allows an organization to have multiple plans to play different roles to achieve an overall common goal. According to Fortune 500, “Entergy has been in their top rankings for the past several years. Entergy constantly exceeds the 10 billion dollar mark in annual revenues.” (Cable News Network, 2008). With revenue of that magnitude, and having an employee base of over 14,000 employees, it is apparent that Entergy’s planning function is one of success. Entergy’s foundation for strategic planning was created in 1913 by one of the company’s founders, Harvey Couch, during his endeavor into the electrical industry. “Couch’s ultimate goal was to have an integrated electric system with numerous sources of power at a reasonable price. Service reliability was foremost on his mind.” (Entergy Corporation, 2008). Couch’s original philosophy for strategic planning is still implemented by Entergy to this day. The company continues to grow into new markets to increase its sources of power to distribute to its existing and potential customers. With this growth, the strategic plan remains one of the most successful functions of Entergy’s management plan. Operational planning occurs in the trenches, so to speak. It is the work of lower-to-middle management and all subsequent field workers who perform the tasks that help accomplish the overall corporate goals set forth by the strategic plan. Entergy prides itself in the teamwork and dedication its employees put forth as a productive unit of the company. The operations division experiences all physical attributes of the company’s missions and goals. Some of these attributes include installing new equipment and services in new customer areas, as well as troubleshooting and repairing existing areas of service. Entergy’s operations span across Arkansas, Mississippi, Texas, and Louisiana; and many efforts are volunteered to help other regions in times of crisis. It is during those times that operational planning shines because of critical time constraints and levels of severity involved with those crises. Without operational planning, Entergy’s strategic goals would never be met. Once strategic and operational planning have been established, tactical planning must take place within a company to secure strategic, (not the same as the planning function), targets to provide a successful business presence. Entergy has used this function of planning to place its business operations in markets that could create symbiotic relationships with other businesses that have already had infrastructure in place.
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