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A written plan also communicates to others a broader scope than a verbal plan. After all, when you're writing, you can bring in past, cover present, and look into future. Or, you can illustrate your points with more detail than you can in a verbal report.
So, let's subject this article to writing test, to see if hangs together.
First, article opened with idea of looking or thinking ahead, and I assumed -- note, I assumed -- that this thinking implied future action.
Second, you'll see idea that to take action, or to get others to take action on our behalf, we need to be clear about 'what' and 'why' before we start. Of course, not every action needs this kind of launch; perhaps I should have said "For important projects...."
Third, I suggested way to get this clarity is to write it out, but in retrospect, perhaps that simply reflects my bias toward writing. Perhaps you manage well simply by thinking, and don't need to write.
Fourth, I next listed a couple of benefits that flow from writing, and looking back I see a that I had bigger projects in mind when I wrote it.
So, all in all, subjecting this article (at least first part of it) to writing process did have desired effect, and I discovered a couple of assumptions that I wasn't conscious of while writing. And, if I was writing a plan, especially a plan for a big project, those would be worthwhile discoveries.
In summary, act and process of writing down an idea will help you implement idea, because it will help uncover some of assumptions and expectations underlying your idea.
Robert F. Abbott writes and publishes Abbott's Communication Letter. Learn how you can use communication to help achieve your goals, by reading articles or subscribing to this ad-supported newsletter. An excellent resource for leaders and managers, at: http://www.communication-newsletter.com