This report outlines the strategic process I would undertake towards developing a business plan for ABLE. The main aim of working on a strategic plan or business plan is to identify ways and means through which an organization can guarantee good results, a competitive edge or a competitive advantage in the long term (Ulwick, 2000, p. 11).
A strategic process should be able to help a company or an organization to understand its current situation, identify a desirable future status and ways of ensuring it arrives at its desired status or end. In this report, the strategic process through which ABLE can restructure towards serving the global market is explained.
The first logical step in a strategic process is understanding the current status or where an organization is. Therefore, to be able to define ABLE’s identity, concerted efforts to appreciate the current situation or business environment within which it operates are critical. It is from understanding the business environment that a company can identify its purpose or mission.
The process of analyzing a business environment requires looking at different facets. To do a proper business analysis, one would have to employ such tools as SWOT analysis, Five Forces model by Porter, Global model or PESTEL, Value chain analysis, among others (Joyce & Woods, 2001, p.233). These tools help in analysis both the internal and external environment to establish how factors in either environment are affecting or are likely to affect the organization.
From the internal environment, the strengths and weakness of the organization are identified for the purposes of defining how best to restructure the organization. From factors in the external environment, industry analysis is done, enabling the organization to identify opportunities and like threats to its operations.
Information to guide the restructuring of ABLE has to be gathered from both the internal environment and external environment. The internal environment of the organization consists of factors such as organizational structure, the organizational culture and the resources available to ABLE. The organizational structure defines how control is exercised and thus how the organization is departmentalized (Ulwick, 2000, p. 100).
Given, ABLE is considering internationalization, the organizational structure has to be discerned to establish whether it can serve the new interests of the organization. The organizational culture consists in the beliefs and way of doing things in an organization (Morden, 2004, p. 157).
As the organization considers going global, the organizational culture has to be analyzed to establish whether it can serve the company in a global market. Resources are critical because strategies have to befit available resources. Therefore, from the human resource to machinery and materials, information has to be gathered to help understand in what way ABLE can best use its resources towards the future.
The external environment of an organization consists of competitors, suppliers, customers and other macro-economic factors that affect business organizations (Morden, 2004, p. 258). Tools like Porter’s five forces, PESTEL, and models like BCG or GE come in hand in analyzing an industry (Sadler & Craig, 2003, p. 49).
The information has to be gathered about the industry to understand especially the factors, which the company has no direct control over but they directly affect the company. Key in the analysis will be understanding the competition in the global market place. By looking at who the competitors are, ABLE will be able to identify gaps that it can ride on to create a niche market for itself globally.
Based on the business environment, a vision, mission, and strategic objectives for ABLE will be formulated (Sadler & Craig, 2003, p. 41). ABLE can only fulfill the mandate enshrined in its mandate if strategies are developed that are internally consistent, fit into the available resources, are environmentally fit and are supported by everybody in the organization especially the top management.
The strategies adopted have to respond to all the organizational characteristics and the external business environment (Ulwick, 2000, p. 118). This is to ensure that all possibilities are sealed thus guaranteeing results or outcomes. For instance, the strategies would have to anchor on ABLE’s strengths in the US to harness opportunities in the global market and also respond to threats in the global markets.
In implementing strategies, their internal consistency thus plausibility and feasibility should guide the implementation process (Joyce & Woods, 2001, 113). Strategies have to be broken into specific actions that deliver on strategic objectives. There has to be interrelation and consistency in the specific actions flowing from each adopted strategy.
Each strategy should somehow have a bearing on other strategies i.e. they should mutually and intrinsically be complementary towards the same goals. The intrinsic consistency of strategies translates into the internal consistency in the specific actions to be carried out during implementation. This inner consistency and plausibility give a sequence or order in which the implementation is to be done.
Finally, the strategic process is not complete without strategic control (Dess et al, 2009, p. 234). Strategic control consists in putting in place long term measures that would ensure deviations are identified and corrected. To ensure proper monitoring and evaluation, ABLE would have to consider setting up a special restructuring team.
The restructuring/ strategy team would have to receive daily, weekly and monthly reports on implementation activities. Such a feedback mechanism handled by a special M & E team would ensure earlier identification of deviations and prompt corrections.
Dess. G. G. Lumpkin, G.T. & Eisner, A. (2009). Strategic Management: Creating Competitive Advantages. London: McGraw-Hill
Joyce, P. & Woods, A. (2001). Strategic Management: A Fresh Approach to Developing Skills, Knowledge and Creativity. New York: Kogan Page Publishers
Morden, T. (2004). Principles of Management 2nd Ed., London: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd
Sadler, P. & Craig, J. C. (2003). Strategic Management. Second Ed., New York: Kogan Page Publishers
Ulwick, A. W. (2000). Business Strategy Formulation: Theory, Process and the Intellectual Revolution. Charlotte, NC: IAP Inc.