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Global strategic planning is the processes of examining a multinational organization’s internal and external environments to develop its strategic plan. By looking at the internal environment, the business is able to leverage its strengths and overcome its weaknesses. In evaluating its external environment, the business examines the political, environmental, social and technological events that can offer it opportunities or become potential threats. Multinational organizations that do not go through the global strategic planning processes are more likely to face unexpected challenges and be unprepared to compete with competitors in new international markets.
One major aspect of the global strategic planning process is conducting an internal audit to find out the business’s strengths and weaknesses. While this may seem unnecessary, a business may find that it does not have the structure or technology to support its efforts of competing in the international marketplace. It may have to create additional departments, hire more human resources, or invest in new technologies. By having an outside organization analyze its current business processes, the business can gain a fresh perspective of its situation. This internal audit includes looking at a company's human capital, technology, structure, communication methods and policies.
External audits are another major aspect of the global strategic planning process and are especially crucial for competing in international markets. Multinational businesses may find that new markets include political, environmental, social and technological challenges that it has not faced before. For instance, political instability can result in loss from currency value, environmental policies can require changing a product design, social norms may cause locals to reject the product, and technological support may not be readily available within the country. Any of these situations can result in business failure if a proper strategic plan is not in place.
Avoiding the global strategic planning process can be disastrous for multinational organizations, since they will most likely be unprepared to handle any obstacles or challenges that will arise. It is important for a business to research international markets before entering them, so that it can compete effectively against local competitors and be aware of the social customs and regulations. For example, locals may not purchase from an international company, because they believe it has taken jobs away from their neighbors and will be taking money out of the country. A company can prepare for this reaction in advance by hiring locals and releasing marketing campaigns about how it will be investing a portion of its profits into the local community.