Most South African organisations were historically part of a closed competitive system with little global competition and a relatively stable economy (Manning: 18, Sunter: 32). Since the political transformation, the globalisation of the world economy, the decline of world economic fundamentals and specific challenges in the South African scenario such as GEAR and employment equity, the whole playingfield has changed. With these changes, new challenges ', appear. A significant challenge for organisations within this scenario is to think, plan and manage strategically. In order to do so, the organisation must understand its relationship with its environment and establish innovative new strategies to manipulate; interact with; and ultimately survive in the environment. The legacy of the past has, in many organisations, implanted an operational short-term focus because the planning horizon was stable. It was sufficient to construct annual plans rather than strategies. These plans were typically internally focused rather than driven by the external environment. Strategic planning in this environment tended to be a form of team building through which the various members of the organisation 's management team discussed and documented the problems of the day. A case study is presented of the
development of a strategic management process for a large South African Mining company. The authors believe that the approach is a new and different way of addressing a problem that exists in many organisations - the establishment of a process of strategic thinking, whilst at the same time ensuring that a formal process of strategic planning is followed in order to prompt the management of the organisation for strategic action. The lessons that were drawn from this process are applicable to a larger audience due to the homogenous nature of the management style of a large number of South African organisations.