ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS FORT LEAVENWORTH United States
Transitioning from conceptual to detailed planning is one the most crucial stages in the planning process. Current US Army doctrine links conceptual planning to the Army Design Methodology and detailed planning to the Military Decision Making Process. By associating conceptual and detailed planning with doctrinal methodologies, it is easy to regard the transition as a set period in time, simply moving from one checklist to another. This analysis seeks to identify methods for effectively conducting this transition. Study of Allied planning processes during the conceptual and detailed planning for the Mulberry Harbors and the Persian Corridor identifies how each staff moved an idea to reality in terms of refining their understanding of the environment, communicating requirements, and eventually providing the specific direction to execute plans on the ground. As the case studies show, effective transition from conceptual to detailed planning happens through detailed understanding of the current and desired environments, continuous assessment with deliberate reframing, and designated and consistent responsibility and leadership. This happens from conception through to execution, and by utilizing these methods, planners evolve conceptual ideas and plans into detailed directives resulting in changes to the operational environment.