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Posts Tagged ‘tactical planning’

Just updated: Operational Planning Q2/2011 – First targets achieved!

Apr 16, 2011 Leave a comment

I just checked my 2011 targets in the context of my monthly operational planning and I thought it might be interesting to post an update.

To check my current position, I opened the file that I created during my yearly planning and I went through the targets and measures quickly.

Interestingly, I was able to mark the first targets as achieved and I had to integrate only minor changes into my planning.

Finally, I added one additional task to toodledo to start working on an upcoming target which I scheduled for May 2011.

What about you? Are you on track with your targets for 2011? Feel free to post your status! 🙂

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Planning – How to realize my dreams?

Jan 19, 2011 Leave a comment

During my last years in school, the idea of visiting all seven continents grew in my mind and this dream was born. But at those days, I did not really start planning to realize this dream. I was just traveling wherever an opportunity arose and many of these opportunities made my visit North America, but no other continents. Thus, realizing this dream was still a dream…

Influenced by the experience that I made within my main job – where I have to plan a lot in the context of project management, continuous improvement and Deming’s Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle – I began to transfer these planning habits to my personal life. This gives me structure and guidance throughout the year and helps me to realize my dreams.

I differentiate between three different levels of planning:

Strategic planning: This is the big picture of my life that I update once a year. It contains the dreams of my life, my overall goals and looks up to 10 years into the future.

Tactical planning: Once a year, based on the strategic planning, I develop a plan of concrete measures that I want to implement during the next year to get a little bit closer to my dreams.

Operational planning: During the year, I check the status of my measures every month, adjust the planning (if necessary), and add additional activities for new measures to my task management as starting point for my daily operations.

I perform these different levels of planning in a top-down approach from strategic to operational planning on a regular basis and insert upcoming issues during the year in a bottom-up approach from my daily operations into the planning.

To read more about this approach, I recommend starting with the “Strategic planning”.

Tactical Planning – Plan the upcoming year

Jan 19, 2011 2 comments

Subsequent to the strategic planning, I do the annual planning to structure the upcoming year. I use the strategic planning as basis and I try to select not more than three to five goals – maximum one per area – to focus on.

To ease the planning process, I use a table with the following columns:

Dream: Copy and paste the selected dream from the strategic planning. Again, let us use “visit all seven continents” as an example.

Measure: Copy and paste the measures to realize the dream that are assigned to the upcoming year. In the context of the dream “visit all seven continents” it could be a measure called “Travel to Australia”.

Steps incl. effort: I brainstorm the steps to realize the measures and estimate the effort. For example “Plan journey (30 hours)” and “Perform journey (4 weeks)”. I do not brainstorm all activities within these steps, I only do a rough estimation of the necessary activities and their effort.

Timeframe: I schedule these steps throughout the upcoming year as basic planning to know when I want to work on what steps. In the context of the Australia example, it would be possible to plan the journey from January to April and to perform the journey in May and June.

Selecting the measure and planning it helps me to make up my mind for the next year. This simple table is the reference that I use within the “Operational planning” during the year.