A quality life is an example of what can be accomplished when thoughtful attention, careful planning, and purposeful action come together without compromise. Planning involves the thoughtful process of setting actionable goals, developing strategies and outlining the tasks and schedules to accomplish the goals. It involves preparing a sequence of action steps to achieve a particular objective.
What is an action plan?
An action plan is a sequence of steps that must be taken or activities that must be well performed for a strategy to succeed. Planning is one of the most important project management and time management techniques. A plan is like a map. With it, you can see the progress you have made towards realizing your goal, and how far you are to the destination
An action plan will help you turn dreams into reality. It creates a way of making your vision more concrete. It describes the way you shall your use your set strategies to meet the desired objectives. An action plan is comprised of some action steps or changes to reach your goal. It describes the following;
– What actions or changes will occur?
– Who will carry out these actions?
– By when will the actions be effected?
– What kind resources are required to perform these changes?
– Effective communication system.
When should you develop an action plan?
People typically do not plan to fail, but instead failing to plan is planning to fail. Because you do not want to fail, it makes sense to take all the necessary step to ensure you attain success. There are many good reasons to work out the details of your agenda in an action plan.
– For credibility purposes as the plan sets the agenda to getting things done in the right way.
– To ensure that you do not overlook the small or minor details.
– To understand what will be possible or not possible to undertake
– For efficiency in that, it saves time, energy and a lot of resources.
– For accountability purposes as it increases the chances of people doing what needs to be done.
Steps to Planning for Success
Step 1 – Work out your goals.
You need to understand your goals. Keep the goals simple and sum them up in one or two sentences.
Step 2 – Develop the planning premises
Define the assumptions and conditions underlying your plan and forecast on the likely future events. Assessing this environment helps you reveal the real opportunities and constraints.
Step 3 – Review the limitations
Several constraints and limitations affect the ability to reach your objectives. These limitations restrict the smooth operation of plans, and they must be provided and anticipated for.
You need to set the time scale in which the goals will be executed. The planning period should be long enough to permit the fulfillment of commitments involved in a decision.
Step 5 – Formulate the policies and strategies
You need to formulate the policies and strategies for the accomplishment of the desired results. For an organization, the responsibility of laying down the policies and strategies vests on the management.
Step 6 – Roll out the plan
Integrate all the factors be it programmers, budgets, schedule and rules and properly balance them to work on achieving your desired goals.