"Plan" vs "Strategic Plan"

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PlanWhat's the difference between a plan and a strategic plan? Most companies, departments and people have a plan. So what's unique about adding the word "Strategic". It is not just an adjective, added to appear more sophisticated or smarter. It should change the content and mold objectives as well as articulate action steps.

Here's why:

1) Critical Environmental variables WILL change over the "planning horizon"

2) Actual outcomes will MOST LIKELY be different (sometimes  a lot, sometimes a little)

3) It should FORBID certain resource allocations to enhance the CONCENTRATION of them

4) Plans are NEVER FULLY ACHIEVED  but assume a next interval of time sequence

A "Plan" can assume the critical environment it is operating in will remain relatively stable over the "planning horizon". A "Strategic Plan" cannot and should not. Liddell Hart in his military strategy classic has a chapter on "The Concentrated Essence of Strategy and Tactics".  Out of 8 items he includes "Take a line of operation which offers alternative objectives" which is rarely understood among business strategic planners.



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