Frank Plaschke, Boston Consulting Group: “Too many companies confuse planning and forecasting.”

In a world where volatility seems to be a constant aspect of business life and the only thing executives can be certain about is uncertainty, one may be tempted to overplan, or to skip planning altogether. Both approaches are wrong, says Frank Plaschke, partner and managing director of the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), where he is also a global leader on CFO topics. “You need to make clear distinctions between planning and forecasting,” he says. “Unfortunately, many companies confuse these concepts.” In addition, he is strongly convinced that bottom-up planning is largely ineffective for companies. And in a world where top value creators are “falling from grace” faster and more frequently than ever before, Plaschke isn’t sure how Apple will look in terms of value creation five years from now.

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