Strategic planning which is process chart involves analyzing the opportunities and threats in the market place, while building the strengths and correcting the weaknesses within the firm, also involves setting goals for specific product marker and for the firm (Bernett and Wilsted (1988) and since it is perceived as a mediating force between the organisation and its environment it has become highly imperative for business organisation to adopt it so as to enhance productivity.
This is sequel to that fact chart business enterprises under the prevailing economic environment of today, have to be up and doing so as to be efficient to survive. High price due to increasing production costs coupled with severe liquidity squeeze necessitated by the dwindling external value of our national currency, have had a serious dampening effect on consumer demand having been faced, therefore, with a high costs of production, diminishing markets and environmental uncertainties, business organization have had to compete move aggressively with one another to attain acceptable volumes of production, sales and a good marker share2. Suffice it to say, therefore, that the complexity of today’s business, coupled with the turbulence in the economic waters of the nation, makes it very turbulence in the economic waters of the nation, makes it very doubtful if any modern business organisation of reasonable size can survive this competitive environment without adequate strategic planning. No wonder, therefore, that strategic planning has become increasing important to managers in recent years. And since it defines fundamental goals and objective in specific terms, and determines the means to achieve them as well as provides a basic, long-range framework into which other forms of planning can fit, it can, therefore, be said to have a very strong influence on the survival and growth of an organizational most especially in a volatile environment.
Consequent upon that, business organizations needs plans to be able to predict unforeseen contingencies, minimize production costs, as well as wastage and then be able to grapple with competitions in a programmed manner – which is the essence of strategic planning. All business organizations need to plan ahead whatever the kind of market, competitive, oligopolistic or monopolistic in which they operate an organization operating in a competitive marker needs to plan and design strategies such as will ensure first, its survival and when its continued profitability. A firm operating in an oligopolistic market has move critical reason for planning because of the fierceness of the competition in such marker and even the monpolist organization has to continually deva new strategies to maintain its position or else it will soon be faced with competition. A wrong investment decision in today’s business would is likely to entail a huge financial loss. A fundamental and pertinent question arises as to why some organizations are outstandingly successful while others achieve marginal or moderate successes and others fail alarmingly. It is also asked as to what it is about organizations that tend to make some ability of their managers to pull critical levers at important points in the evolutionary development of their companies.
For these managers, the trick is knowing which levers to pull, and when to pull these levers to pull, and when to pull these levers to produce the desire and significant results in term of increased productivity which leads to high profitability of their organizations. We may identify these critical levers as organizational strategies. Strategy and strategic planning in the context of business organizations, refer the major action programmes that are used by organizations to achieve their mission and goals. The focus of all business organisation is viability and profitability. The first requirement of the spirit of organisation is high performance standards for the group as well as for individuals in the organisation. A successful organisation is most often in efficient enterprise one of the major focuses of management by objectives is to have managers set high performance standards for themselves. A manager performs his functions by allocation and integration of human and economic resources through the process of planning, organizing, directing, and controlling, for the purpose of producing outputs (goods and services) desired by its customers, so that the organization’s objectives are achieved. A manager works with and through people and other resources to realize these organisation objectives, Apala Agwu (1990).
As modern business activities widen, environmental scanning and planning become difficult and more relevant today’s business conditions have continuous to change so fast to emphasize a growing need for continuous business intelligence activities and strategic planning as the only option to anticipate failure problems and opportunities. Strategic planning provides all employees with clear goals and directions to the future of the organization. It also provides a standard against which future performance can be compared. And all this makes it complicated in many highly technical firms that are subject to the “law of acceleration” which suggests an increasing rate of change. Since strategic planning arms at finding how a company competes successful within it environment, it is therefore said to be based on the principles of comparative competitive advantage necessary for survival and growth under competitive conditions. A firm cannot survive or grow unless it maintains one or more comparative competitive advantages, which provide the basic rationale by which customers will prefer that firm to others.
Unfortunately, though Nigeria presents a strong picture of a turbulent and unpredictable environment for organizations to thrift – particularly the manufacturing sector. This is due mainly to constant changes in the political and economic conditions in the country. The effect of this on the manufacturing sector is quite stupendous. This is especially so when once considers the fact that majority of our manufacturing industries today provide below capacity. Specifically speaking, for manufacturing industries operating in today’s volatile business environment, the need for the strategic planning seems too obvious and imperative to require mentioning. The fortunes of our economy and the manufacturing sector appear inextricably interwoven, and so development within the overall economy will inevitably have direct impacts on the environment. Similarly, the operational efficiency of this sector or otherwise in bringing to fruition the social and economic yearnings of the nation has direct impact on the economy it is against this background that this study intends to assess the effect of strategic planning on the productivity of the Nigerian Bottling Company. It is hoped that this study will in the long run afford the rare opportunity of understanding and appreciating the significance of strategic planning in today’s organizational restructuring, planning and improvement.
2.1 THE ORIGIN OF THE SUBJECT AREA
In the course of this study, the research his subjects are from Nigeria Bottling Company Plc, EASTERN REGION due to the ineffective planning on organisation productivity.
2.2 SCHOOL OF THOUGHT WITH THE SUBJECT AREA
Akpala, Agwu (1990), states chat planning establish the framework or boundaries within which people make decisions and carryout actions in the future. It determines what is to be done in the future and to what end. He says that planning therefore, anticipates future events, problems and relationships and in this way it;
1. Develops a series of alternative approaches to guide action towards desired goals, and then
2. Decides what to do, why or to what end, when to do it, how to do it, and where to do it before action is taken.
Megginson, Leon et al (1986), define planning as choosing a course of action and deciding in advance what is to be done, in what sequence, when, and how. Good planning, they stale, attempts to consider the nature of the future environments in which planning decisions and actions are intended to operate, as the current period when plans are being made. According to them, planning provides the basic for effective action resulting from management’s ability to anticipate and prepare for changes that might affect organizational objectives. Thus it is the basis for integrating the management functions and is especially needed for controlling the organization’s operations.
Trewartha, et al (1976) states that planning involves setting of goals and objectives. This is to say chat planning is the determination of objectives, strategies, methods, programmes and rules, required in guiding the combination and utilization of an organization’s human material and money resources for further time spans.
Planning is a process which takes a rationalistic and decision making approach; and recognizes problems, evaluates relevant information, develops alternative courses of action, assess the consequences of each alternative, and selects the best course of action, called plan, they state.
Ewurum & Unamka (1995), state that in business, planning is the managerial function of solting company objectives, determining strategy and selecting alternative courses of action. Planning according to them is an umbrella word or idea containing the following elements;
Kmard, Jerry (1988), states that planning is an activity we perform before taking action. It is anticipatory decision making process of deciding what to do and how to do it before action is required. Its purpose, he continuous, is to facilitate progress and improve performance and that planning allows integrated, consistent, and purposeful action. Although mistakes can be avoided and problems can be anticipated and overcome before crises arise, but that planning must be based on prudent forecasts and reasonable premises. And that it cannot be done in an atmosphere of blind optimism and disregard for competitive and environment realities.