Artificial Intelligence in Strategic Planning

12.03.2024 6 Min Read
Nino Gventsadze

management consultant, Business Strategy

Artificial Intelligence in Strategic Planning

In the modern era, we are all witnessing first-hand the unprecedented speed at which technological advancement is changing industries. The evolving technological environment creates different business needs and requires new strategies to respond to them, for which often traditional strategic planning alone is no longer effective and it becomes necessary to use various technological advances, including artificial intelligence (AI). Integrating AI into the management and decision-making process of companies gives managers the opportunity to collect, analyze and make decisions based on the maximum amount of data.

Problems of traditional strategic planning

Strategic planning is the process of setting long-term goals, analyzing internal and external factors, and determining how to respond to them, allowing businesses to seize opportunities and overcome challenges in a rapidly changing environment to optimally allocate resources, expand market share, or achieve sustainable growth.

Accumulated consulting experience shows that different businesses vary in their level of adaptation of the strategic planning process, although even the best of them often have significant shortcomings in their strategic planning efforts, e.g.

• Planned events are carried out infrequently (once a year or not at all)

• When making strategic decisions, reasoning is often based only on the intuition and experience of management and does not take into account rational factors of the external environment (market, competition).

• The planning process does not use sufficient, accurate and objective data.

• Once strategies are selected and implemented, progress is rarely monitored.

What does AI offer businesses today?

Currently, artificial intelligence is already actively used at various stages of business management and operations. In its simplest form, it serves a descriptive function and is used to create analytical data such as graphs/dashboards for competitive analysis or to study the performance of different lines of business. More advanced versions of AI have diagnostic intelligence, which refers to the ability to establish cause-and-effect relationships between events and understand root causes and driving forces. Such algorithms can identify patterns and trends in customer behavior, market demand, or competitor strategies by analyzing historical data.

The third stage of AI development and the most progressive stage currently actively used in business is predictive intelligence, which has the ability to create forecasts for the future based on certain assumptions and analysis of past experience. Predictive intelligence is used to create scenarios based on various changes and scenarios, allowing business owners to assess the potential impact of these scenarios on their business and develop customized strategies to respond to them. Predictive intelligence can also identify potential risks, which through ongoing monitoring enable organizations to proactively mitigate their negative impact.

The next levels of AI integration into business include developing analytics-based recommendations, delegating certain decisions to artificial intelligence, and full AI autonomy, although the full integration of these stages into management is still a work in progress and will take some time.


Still, how can AI be used in strategic planning?

Despite the fact that the use of artificial intelligence is characterized by growing trends in such key areas of business management as marketing, human resources, logistics, customer service, etc., the degree of its implementation in the strategic planning process is still quite low, due to important features of this process. Unlike other processes associated with business management, the strategic planning process has a particularly high proportion of human involvement, decisions based on personal experience and intuition, emotions, historical and cultural context, along with rational factors.

Therefore, if we ask the question as follows, is it possible to completely automate the strategic planning process using artificial intelligence, the answer is no (at least in the current situation and the future perspective that can be imagined from this situation). However, observing the current business context allows us to confidently say that artificial intelligence is already transforming certain stages of the strategic planning process, as well as the approaches and thinking of the people involved in these stages.

In the strategic decision-making process, we can think of AI-human interaction as a three-step process, in the first step of which a human tells the AI a problem/asks a specific question that it wants to solve. At the second stage, AI processes and analyzes the database associated with the problem, as a result of which it offers the “customer” several options for solving the proposed problem. After this, the “customer” obviously has a choice - make a strategic decision based on the given options, entrust the decision to artificial intelligence, or modify the problem to accept other options.

In other words, AI can play an important role in the strategic planning process in making rational, fact-based and data-driven decisions, the further review and final evaluation of which is still subject to human influence.

Delegating rational decision-making to artificial intelligence will itself change the specificity of certain positions in organizations and will lead to an increase in employer demand for so-called “strategists” who will be responsible for aligning the recommendations generated by artificial intelligence with the values and goals of the organization . Particularly important in this process are skills that will help you make intuitive strategic decisions. An example of such skills is creative thinking, the ability to analyze not only facts, but also context and abstract thinking.

What benefits does AI bring to the strategic planning process?


Incorporating artificial intelligence into the strategic planning process offers companies several significant benefits, which include, but are not limited to:

• Automating repetitive and manual tasks – reducing the time spent on these tasks, optimizing costs and increasing business productivity and efficiency.

• Optimization of the decision-making process. AI algorithms can provide objective and data-driven insights, allowing business managers to make faster and more informed decisions.

• Increased forecasting accuracy – leads to a reduction in risks associated with strategic decisions, and through constant monitoring allows for the timely identification of various anomalies.

Which businesses will benefit most from using AI in strategic planning?

Let's start with the fact that all businesses, regardless of size and industry, have the opportunity to use artificial intelligence more than today. However, the advantages of artificial intelligence in strategic planning are directly proportional to the presence of a number of prerequisites. Therefore, before you begin this process, questions need to be asked (note: the following are some basic questions, although they are not exhaustive; the readiness assessment process will be much more complex):

• Do you have all the data (internal and external) that can influence your strategic decisions? - Remember, often even minor problems in the environment can have a significant impact on your strategy.

• How good is the data you have? - Remember that the result obtained using artificial intelligence will be of exactly the same quality as the information you provide. Therefore, ensuring data accuracy and reliability is critical for effective AI analysis, which in turn requires additional investment in data management systems.

• How flexible is your business? – AI-generated scenarios and recommendations enable you to develop rapid response strategies in a turbulent environment, but you must ensure that your business processes, systems, structures and your team's mindset support the implementation of these recommendations.

What are the potential risks of incorporating AI into strategic decision-making?

If you decide to incorporate artificial intelligence into your strategic planning process, it is important to remember that there is no universal AI that can solve all your problems. However, it is important to understand that artificial intelligence is not “magical.” Therefore, to avoid unrealistic expectations and poor implementation, it needs to be properly structured and contextualized. In other words, it needs to be “trained” to give correct answers and predictions.

When using artificial intelligence, the issue of ethics must also be taken into account. When making strategic decisions, managers consider various ethical aspects and human values, potential impacts on society and the environment, which may not be integrated into the artificial intelligence system.

Another challenge to using artificial intelligence in strategic decision making is accountability. In fact, only humans, not machines (even intelligent machines), can be held responsible for their decisions. This issue will increase the need for legal regulation of strategic AI decisions in the future. To create a regulatory framework for compensation for damage caused by the operation of artificial intelligence systems, it will be necessary to define the concept of artificial intelligence and its status in civil law relations.


In conclusion, artificial intelligence has already changed and in the future will even more fundamentally transform the strategic planning process. By using it, organizations can ensure that their strategies adapt to a rapidly changing environment to ensure long-term success. However, organizations must also take care to address the challenges associated with the use of artificial intelligence and ensure that it is used responsibly in critical decision-making processes.

Featured Insights

While a crisis management strategy is an integral part of any long-term business strategy, in today's fast-paced business environment, businesses are often faced with unforeseen events such as global pandemics, political conflicts or economic downturns, which effectively challenge business creators, requiring rapid adaptation and difficult decisions. . By studying these issues in depth, organizations can improve their ability to adapt, identify potential opportunities, and maintain growth even during a crisis. Strategic planning plays an important role in managing crises and ensuring long-term success. Important steps in this process are assessing the impact of the crisis, developing and implementing a plan and strategy for managing it.

Assessing the impact of the crisis

One of the key aspects of navigating an unpredictable environment is environmental analysis, which involves identifying new trends, changes in customer behavior and competition.

Based on the identification of current changes in the external environment, businesses must assess the immediate and long-term financial consequences of the crisis, which may be associated with disruptions in the supply chain, consumer demand and general, existing and expected changes in the market. etc. A thorough analysis gives organizations the opportunity to discover vulnerabilities that will be taken into account when developing a management strategy.

In addition to the financial aspects, it is necessary to assess the impact of the crisis on people inside and outside the organization. This includes assessing employee welfare, customer concerns and any impact on brand image and reputation. Understanding these factors allows organizations to act proactively to support their employees, maintain customer loyalty, and protect brand reputation.

Development of a crisis management plan and strategy

Once the impact of a crisis has been assessed, it is critical to proactively respond to it by developing a crisis management plan. The plan should include analysis of multiple potential scenarios based on different assumptions, allowing business owners to prepare for a wide range of possibilities and make decisions that maximize their chances of success.

One of the most important aspects of a crisis management plan is the creation of an effective crisis management team. This team should include representatives from various departments and positions within the organization, such as finance, operations, human resources, public relations, etc. By creating a diverse team, organizations can ensure comprehensive crisis management.

After assessing the environment, assembling a crisis management team, and analyzing scenarios, organizations must determine key crisis response strategies. These strategies must address short-term and long-term goals such as maintaining operational efficiency, employee safety, and business continuity.

Experience shows that crisis situations stimulate the development of creative thinking and innovation, and also force organizations to reconsider established norms and change the traditional paradigm. In this process, it is vital for organizations to have the skills to adapt to a crisis, which can be achieved by implementing a culture focused on continuous learning and improvement, creating space for innovation, openness and promoting collaboration.

Implementation of crisis response strategies

One of the key aspects of implementing a crisis management plan is developing a communications plan that outlines both external and internal communication protocols and establishes regular communication channels with employees, customers and other stakeholders.

During disruptions, organizations may also need to implement new approaches to maintain business continuity and operational efficiency, something that has become especially evident during the pandemic. These approaches may include implementing remote work policies, providing alternative sources of supply, creating reserve system, etc. By using business continuity-focused approaches, organizations can minimize the impact of crises on daily operations and maximize their ability to recover quickly.


In conclusion, strategic planning in times of crisis is essential to overcome uncertainty and facilitate adaptation and growth. By understanding the challenges associated with a crisis, conducting a thorough assessment, developing a holistic crisis management plan, and effectively implementing crisis response strategies, organizations can overcome difficult times and emerge stronger in the long term.


What is digital transformation and why is it so important for business today?

In today's fast-paced business environment, “digital transformation” has become more than just a buzzword, but a strategic imperative. Businesses are faced with a stark reality: adapt or be left behind. The rapid and continuous development of technology has fundamentally changed people's lifestyles, work habits, and consumer behavior.

Consequently, to succeed in this dynamic landscape, the digital transformation of a business is a tough proposition, and its thorough understanding and implementation have become critical for sustainable and long-term business success.


Digitalization or digital transformation?

When discussing digital transformation, you will often also hear the word "digitalization", these words are used as synonyms, but they are significantly different from each other.

To better understand the essence of digital transformation, it is necessary to define the difference between digitization, digitalization, and digital transformation.

  • Simply put, digitization means converting something from analog to digital format, which involves converting physical or analog data, such as text, audio, or visual data, into a digital format that can be stored and processed electronically. For example, scanning a printed document and turning it into an electronic version.
  • Digitalization is the use of digital technologies to improve business processes and increase efficiency and value. It involves using digital tools and technologies to perform traditional business tasks. For example, implementing digital tools such as a customer relationship management (CRM) system or implementing digital communication platforms to streamline business operations.

Digitalization is more than the digital conversion of existing analog data and involves the integration of digital technologies into a specific aspect of business.

  • Digital transformation is more than just using modern gadgets and software. It involves a holistic approach that integrates digital technologies across the entire organization and requires a reassessment of business domains - what is the business strategy in the digital world, and how is value created for the customer; It includes optimizing operations and processes, fostering a culture of innovation, and using data to make evidence-based decisions.

An example of digital transformation is the implementation of a telemedicine system in a medical clinic, through which patients can make virtual appointments, maintain an electronic health record, talk with doctors online and receive medical advice securely from home.

At its core, digital transformation is a larger and more complex process than the digitization of data or the digitalization of a specific business operation. It is impossible to successfully implement digital transformation if it is not preceded by the stages of digitization and digitalization.

Often, unsuccessful digital transformation attempts are due to an inconsistent approach where the digital maturity of companies is not properly assessed. But the possibilities are truly endless: with the right vision for the digital era and the adoption of digital capabilities, organizations can transform their business models to improve efficiency and unlock unprecedented growth potential.

Why is digitalization, or better yet, digital transformation, vital for business?

By using digital technologies, businesses can create future potential and gain tangible benefits today, more specifically:

Improving customer experience (CX) - In today's digital age, customers expect consistent, seamless, and personalized experiences from businesses. Digital transformation allows businesses to meet these expectations by automating routine tasks, providing self-service capabilities and real-time (LIVE) support.

Improved operational efficiency and productivity – Optimizing processes through digital transformation improves operational efficiency. Robotic process automation (RPA) and optimization lead to resource savings, lower costs, and overall increased productivity. It also reduces errors, saves time, and frees up valuable resources so employees can focus on more important activities.

Competitive advantage - Digital transformation provides competitive advantage through the use of advanced technology and rich data, allowing businesses to innovate faster, improve efficiency, and gain a competitive advantage in an ever-changing marketplace.

Data-driven decision making - The ability to use and analyze data to make informed decisions is a key benefit of digital transformation. Organizations can gain valuable insights into customer behavior, market trends and internal processes, leading to more accurate and effective decisions.

Adapt to change – The dynamic nature of the business environment requires constant adaptation. Digital transformation fosters a culture of innovation and agility, enabling organizations and their teams to quickly respond to market changes, seize new opportunities, overcome challenges, and stay ahead of industry trends.

Beyond digital challenges

Of course, digital transformation comes with its challenges. Resistance to change, inadequate IT infrastructure and digital literacy, cybersecurity concerns and budgeting issues are just a few of the challenges a business may face. However, with a strong digital strategy, investing in the right solutions and developing a culture of continuous improvement, these challenges can be overcome.

Remember, digital transformation is not a one-time event, but an ongoing process. The future is digital, and the decision about how businesses want to exist in this future lies in the hands of their leaders. However, the time to act is now as the pace of technological development continues to accelerate and the drive to achieve sustainable success matches the pace of development.

Start your digital transformation today and create the future success of


In the year 2024, businesses are encountering significant transformative changes. Geopolitical instability and climate change have created an immediate demand for businesses to achieve self-sufficiency and foster resilience. Simultaneously, technological advancements, particularly in the realm of artificial intelligence (AI), hold the potential to revolutionize every facet of our lives. Nurturing a business during this crucial juncture necessitates striking a careful balance between upholding sustainability, harnessing digital technology, and maximizing human potential.

The purpose of this article is to assist business managers in effectively managing these challenges and, furthermore, to offer them a guiding vision for successfully navigating and expanding their businesses within this intricate landscape.

Business Sustainability - Challenges and Opportunities

Sustainability becomes a strategic imperative for businesses in 2024. Resistance to change and environmental challenges, increased competitiveness, stable and long-term development are not only business needs but also the basic requirements of consumers and investors.

Below, we discuss important factors that will influence the formation of the business environment in Georgia in 2024 and, accordingly, the sustainability of business. One of the priorities for business managers should be to prepare to respond effectively to these anticipated challenges and opportunities.

Geopolitical Factors

Georgia is located in a complex geopolitical landscape in which regional reorganizations are taking place. In light of the Russian-Ukrainian war, there is growing concern for the stability of our country and the security of our borders. No less of a risk factor is the growing likelihood of conflicts in the Middle East. These factors may have a negative impact on trade, tourism, investment, and commodity prices. Therefore, businesses should be careful about geopolitical risks and develop action plans in emergency (crisis) situations. It should also be noted here that there is a need to tighten cybersecurity measures because security today extends not only beyond physical borders.

We cannot ignore the local political context – in particular, the 2024 parliamentary elections. Elections are always associated with political conflicts and growing uncertainty. This, on the one hand, leads to lower consumer and purchasing sentiment, and on the other hand, to increased investor caution. Consequently, businesses will need to mobilize more resources to communicate with both customers and investors.

Economic Factors

Among economic factors, one of the most important positive factors for our country is obtaining the status of a candidate country for the European Union. Positive expectations for the country's economic growth in 2024 are associated with this event. According to the World Bank[1], the country's economic growth is expected to be 4.8%, and inflation is expected to be within 2.5%. Economic growth and consistently low inflation are important prerequisites for business sustainability.

Georgia's free trade agreements with several countries and ongoing negotiations with other countries regarding access to foreign markets also present significant business opportunities. However, it should be noted that first the pandemic, then the war in Ukraine, conflicts in the Middle East, and the global economic slowdown caused significant disruptions in the supply chain (e.g. delays, funnel effect). This factor may hurt Georgian exports. Accordingly, diversification of export markets, strategic alliances, and the introduction of modern logistics technologies are becoming important strategies for business. Trade regulation is another issue that Georgian businesses should take into account. Navigating the complex web of sanctions against Russia and other potential restrictions poses a significant regulatory risk. Therefore, understanding and complying with the legal framework is critical. Here, we should not forget about EU trade rules, compliance with which will be one of the main challenges in the coming years.

Another important economic risk factor is dependence on Russian energy resources. Accordingly, it becomes important for Georgia to prioritize achieving energy independence through the development of renewable energy sources and deepening regional energy partnerships. Georgia's potential in hydropower and solar energy becomes even more important for energy independence and sustainability. This provides opportunities for private businesses to attract green investments and use green technologies.

Climate change, the environment, and security

Experience has shown that Georgia is vulnerable to the effects of climate change, such as floods and droughts. Accordingly, adaptation to climate change should be one of the country's priorities. On the other hand, businesses must ensure their security and resilience by ensuring climate risks and investing in climate change adaptation.

In 2024, food security and sustainable agriculture will be no less a priority for Georgia. Focusing on sustainable farming practices and local food production is becoming increasingly important, ensuring food security and reducing dependence on imports. From a business perspective, the attractiveness of agriculture and local food production will increase.

Technology and artificial intelligence (AI) at the service of business

Artificial intelligence (AI) is poised to disrupt industries like never before. It provides incredible results in terms of data processing and analysis, optimization, and automation of workflows. From personalized healthcare to smart cities, the possibilities of artificial intelligence are endless. However, as well as opportunities, this also creates the risk of occupational change, workforce movement, and increased inequality among employees. Businesses should, therefore, focus on reskilling and upskilling their workforce to ensure that everyone benefits from the technological leap. It should be noted here that the security of personal information and the ethical use of technology are particularly pressing issues, which require responsibility, transparency, ethical practices, and security measures regarding the use of technology.

The challenges and opportunities for technological development in Georgia in 2024 are as follows:

Integration of artificial intelligence (AI): The use of AI to automate tasks, analyze data, personalize user experiences, and streamline operations will increase. Thus, companies that are the first to embrace the power of AI will gain a competitive advantage.

• Data-driven decision-making: Integrating data analytics into organizational processes will enable businesses to make data-driven decisions at all levels. To take advantage of this opportunity, businesses must invest in developing relevant competencies within the organization. It will also be important to make changes to decision-making processes and systems.

• Cybersecurity: As mentioned above, increasing regional tensions increase the vulnerability of Georgian businesses to cyber-attacks. Investing in cybersecurity measures and increasing employee awareness is becoming critical.

• Cloud technologies: The attractiveness of cloud technologies will increase as they offer businesses scalability, flexibility, and cost-effective solutions.

• Digitalization and e-commerce: Dependence on online platforms and e-commerce is likely to continue to increase. Georgian businesses will have to adapt and invest in digital marketing and online business tools.

• Studying new technologies: The study of blockchain, metaverse, and other new technologies is becoming attractive due to the huge potential they have in terms of industry breakthroughs and new business opportunities. It is expected that we will see more startups in this direction.

• Potential as a technology hub: Georgia's low taxes, technological youth, and strategic location make it a potential IT and creative industry hub. Georgia has the potential to attract technology companies and stimulate innovation in sectors such as cybersecurity, financial technology, and artificial intelligence.

Human potential is the main capital of business

Artificial intelligence is more efficient than humans in analyzing data and performing repetitive tasks. However, it cannot replace the unique human qualities of creativity, empathy, and critical thinking. Overall, as the ability to use technology and artificial intelligence increases, so will the demand for human capital that can effectively interact with and use these technologies. Therefore, in 2024, it becomes important for businesses to develop these qualities and competencies in their employees. Companies that invest in employee well-being and development, encourage teamwork, and instill a culture of continuous learning will gain a competitive advantage. In the era of artificial intelligence, the true competitive advantage of a business will be its ability to adapt, innovate, and solve complex problems.

The main challenges and opportunities for business in Georgia in 2024 in the area of human capital are as follows Flexibility for hybrid and remote work: After the pandemic, many companies tried to return to traditional modes of operation. Some even implemented strict office-only policies. However, practice shows that this requirement is increasingly irrelevant today, and the flexibility of hybrid and remote work has become an important factor in attracting and retaining talent. Employees, especially the younger generation, are not ready to go back to the past and openly or quietly protest against it. Consequently, hybrid work models are expected to become the norm, forcing business leaders to think about new approaches and forms of communication for managing collaboration, engagement, and maintenance.

• Skills and upskilling: Technological developments have changed the education and skills paradigm. Today, education involves constant learning and development, mastering new competencies, and caring about increasing emotional intelligence. Hence, it is important for businesses to focus on creating a development-oriented work culture and invest in employee training and development.

• Prioritize employee well-being: Experience and research have shown that, despite high competence and extensive experience, people's performance suffers significantly when their mental or physical well-being is compromised. Therefore, creating a psychologically safe environment for employees, and prioritizing their physical and mental well-being, will be one of the most important business tasks. Accordingly, investment in training, mental health, personal development, and physical health programs will increase.

• Empathetic and people-oriented leadership: Gone are the days of charismatic, strict, "all-powerful," and "all-knowing" leaders. Today, the competence or ability to make decisions solely in the hands of a few poses the greatest threat to a business, as it loses flexibility and the ability to adapt quickly. Accordingly, maximizing human potential at all levels, providing maximum independence and autonomy to employees within their competence, as well as ensuring effective coordination between employees and teams, have become the main tasks of organizations today. Therefore, today's leaders must prioritize empathy, communication, and building trust with employees. Openness to feedback and developing a culture of teamwork will be key to business growth.2024 is not just an ordinary year - it is a turning point - a year of change. The choices a business makes now – at the intersection of sustainability, technological capabilities, and human potential – will determine its future. For business today, development means a paradigm shift, which forces it to reconsider its business model, development strategy, and leadership concept; becoming more ethical and responsible towards society and the environment, becoming faster, learning more to be able to take advantage of technology, and most importantly, becoming more people-oriented because it is human skills and potential that become increasingly important capital in the modern era. And if a business can cope with these transformative changes, it will not only survive but thrive and make significant positive changes in its environment.

Source: Forbes Georgia

[1] https://www.worldbank.org/en/publication/global-economic-prospects