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Tactical Plans: Examples & Overview

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  • 0:01 Strategic vs. Tactical Plans
  • 1:16 Making Good Tactical Plans
  • 1:46 Everyone Can Have…
  • 3:08 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Dr. Douglas Hawks

Douglas has two master's degrees (MPA & MBA) and a PhD in Higher Education Administration.

Businesses can have a good strategy, but will fail if they don't execute. In this lesson, you will learn how tactical plans help turn a strategy into specific, action-oriented steps.

Strategic vs. Tactical Plans

All successful businesses have goals, whether the business is a Fortune 500 industry leader or the subject of a business plan that only exists in someone's mind. While these goals are necessary to succeed, many great companies have failed because their managers weren't able to translate their strategic objectives and goals into tactical plans.

Goals and strategies focus on long-term, big-picture outcomes and reflect a general approach to conducting business. For example, a local restaurateur might have a strategy to offer the freshest food in town. Simply saying they are the freshest doesn't give anyone information about how they will be the freshest. That's when tactical planning occurs.

Tactical planning is focused on specific outcomes, a shorter time-frame, and stated steps. For the local restaurant owner that wants to serve fresh food, tactical plans may include entering into contracts with local growers to ensure adequate supplies of ingredients, modifying the menu as seasons change to reflect the fresh food available, and developing policies that specify when ingredients are too old to use.

Making Good Tactical Plans

Just like a strategic plan, tactical plans need to reflect the priorities of management and utilize the strengths of the organization and the employees. Tactical plans must also have a clear and logical link to the strategic plan. If management sets a strategic plan focused on increasing sales through new customer acquisitions, but the sales team sets tactical plans focused on increasing customer service on existing accounts, there is a disconnect between the tactical plans and the strategic goal.

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