Early in the twentieth century Henri Fayol identified the job of managers as to plan, organize, command, coordinate, and control. The world appeared predictable. The future could be planned. It seemed sensible, therefore, for executives to identify their objectives and then focusing on their achievement.
Now, in the face of relentless technological change, disruptive forces in industry after industry and global competition, planning seems like pointless wishful thinking. Organizational agility, built on self-managing teams, is now perceived as the solution to compete in the fast-changing business reality.
The logic of centralized long-term strategic planning is the antithesis of an organization redesigned around teams who define their own priorities and resources allocation on a weekly basis. But if planning and agility are both necessary, organizations have to make them work.
This is why planning twenty-first century style = agile planning. Companies willing to succeed cannot afford to give up any of these components. We still need planning, but a dynamic one.
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