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A Different Approach to Budgeting

Brent Grover: Annual budgets must be linked to a long-term strategic plan

August 10, 2012
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The following is an excerpt of Brent Grover’s latest distribution management book, The Little Black Book of Strategic Planning for Distributors, published by Modern Distribution Management. In this article, Grover argues that the traditional method that distributors use to plan for the next year is flawed. Instead, they need to link the strategic plan to the annual planning process, and instead of working top-down, build from the bottom up. MDM subscribers get a 20 percent discount on this book.

General George S. Patton knew much about wartime planning and execution, and many of his aphorisms are memorable (“Lead me, follow me or get out of my way.”) and applicable to business situations (“A good plan violently executed now is better than the perfect plan next week.”).

To paraphrase: There are three ways that business leaders get what they want – by planning, by working and by praying. Any great business takes careful planning or thinking. Then you must have well-trained people to carry it out: That’s working. But between the plan and the operation there is always an unknown. That unknown

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