12 Characteristics of Planning Function of Management

Characteristics of Planning

Planning is an essential function of management that involves making a roadmap for the organization to achieve desired goals effectively and efficiently. Let’s explore some characteristics/features of planning function of management.

Goal Oriented

In business, planning is like plotting a roadmap to a destination. Just as a traveler sets a destination before a journey, a manager sets clear objectives. Imagine a smartphone manufacturer aiming to increase market share by 15%.

Planning helps them outline strategies to achieve this goal, such as introducing innovative features or expanding into new markets.

Management Function

Think of planning as the foundation of a well-constructed building. It is the first and most important management function. Like architects designing blueprints, managers use planning to create the structure of their operations.

Related: The 5 Functions of Management

It’s not just about products; it involves coordinating resources, defining roles, and allocating budgets. For instance, a project manager uses planning to ensure each team member’s tasks align to achieve project completion.


Forward-looking is an essential feature of planning. In business, planning acts as a crystal ball that peers into the future. Consider an e-commerce business anticipating holiday sales. By analyzing past trends, market dynamics, and consumer behavior, they prepare in advance with stockpiled inventory, marketing campaigns, and optimized website performance.

Pervasive in Nature

Business planning is like the complicated gears of a clock working in harmony. It extends across all levels and departments. From the sales team projecting revenue targets to HR planning workforce expansion, every facet relies on planning for seamless integration.

Related: The 3 Levels of Management

Continuous Function

Imagine a tech startup evolving in a competitive landscape. Planning is like a compass guiding them through uncertainty. Whether they’re adapting to new technologies, customer feedback, or market shifts, constant planning ensures they remain agile and relevant.

Intellectual Process

Consider planning as the blueprint of innovation. Just as architects design structurally sound buildings, businesses plan using intellectual prowess. For instance, a software company devises a plan for launching a cutting-edge app. This involves market research, feature development, and strategic partnerships, all hinging on intellectual expertise.

Decision Making

Think of planning as a compass guiding business decisions. Just as a captain charts a course before sailing, managers use planning to make informed choices.

For instance, a retail manager uses planning to decide on the optimal product mix for a new store, considering factors like customer preferences and market trends.

Related: Operational Goals

Flexible in Nature

In the business landscape, planning is like a versatile tool in a toolbox. It’s not a rigid blueprint but an adaptable framework. Imagine an IT company planning a project. As new technologies emerge or the client needs to evolve, planning allows for adjustments while staying aligned with the end goal.


Business planning is akin to a recipe for success. Just as a chef follows a recipe to create a delicious dish, managers use planning to outline actionable steps.

For instance, a marketing manager follows a promotional plan with specific timelines, budgets, and strategies to launch a new product successfully.

Resource Optimization

Resource optimization is also an important characteristic of planning. Think of planning as a puzzle solver for business resources. Like a puzzle master fitting pieces together, managers use planning to optimize limited resources such as time, money, and manpower.

A manufacturing manager, for example, plans production schedules to ensure efficient utilization of machinery and materials.

Read Also: Strategic Goals

Means for Efficiency

In the business realm, planning is like a streamlined assembly line. It eliminates wasted efforts and ensures smooth operations. Imagine a supply chain manager planning distribution routes.

Through careful planning, they minimize transportation costs, reduce delivery times, and enhance overall supply chain efficiency.

Role of Managers

Managers play a pivotal role in business planning. They analyze market trends, gather data, and set objectives. Just as a conductor leads an orchestra, managers orchestrate the planning process, harmonizing various departments towards a unified goal. Their decisions shape strategies, resource allocation, and timelines, all contributing to the organization’s success.

Read Next: Examples of Organizational Goals

Leave a Comment