Some others consider it to be future-oriented plans for interacting with the competitive environment. Overall, strategic planning is long-term plan to optimize the resources to sustain competitive advantage and achieve the corporate goals. Different words and phrases have been used by different thinkers but basically, it is a long-term planning with definite goals. Hence, a formal strategic plan should consist of written plans; it should cover more than a year of activity. This should be formulated taking into consideration the strategic alternatives and identity the resource requirements.
Strategic planning has been defined as ‘the devising and formulation of organisational level plans which set the broad and flexible objectives, strategies and policies of a business, driving the organisation towards its vision of the future’ (cited by Aldehayyat & Anchor, 2008).
When speaking of strategy as a plan, Mintzberg and Quinn specified two essential characteristics about strategy – it is made in advance of the actions to which it applies and it is developed consciously and purposefully (Dooris, Kelley & Trainer, 2002). Mintzberg had earlier recognized strategy as a broader concept than ‘planning’. It could also be seen as a ‘Ploy’, ‘Position’, ‘Perspective’ and ‘Pattern’ (Anderson & Atkins, 2001). Even Quinn’s definition of strategy included planning as a part of strategy formulation.
Planning, according to Dooris, Kelley and Trainer (2002) is concerned with improving one’s condition and pertains to market share and improving profits. As a structured management discipline and practice, strategic planning is still in its nascent stage. Strategic planning has been considered as ‘the one best way’ to devise and implement strategies that would enhance the competitiveness of each business unit. The concept emerged during turbulent times of the 1970s, when the energy crisis and other unanticipated