Intent vs. Planning

Hey Everyone,

As you all know that planning plays an important role in our lives, careers, professions, goals and almost everything that we do or want to do, achieve or accomplish. We all agree on that.

There are many interesting quotes and words of wisdom about planning. Here are some of my personal favorites.

Plans are nothing, planning is everything.

Dwight D. Eisenhower

Just because you made a good plan, doesn’t mean that’s what’s gonna happen.

Taylor Swift

Planning should be a process, not an event.

Simon Sinek

And truth is we all do some sort of planning, because, we are aware of its importance and impact on everything we do.

In many professions including software engineering planning is considered to be a key to success. Here is another interesting quote about planning by Yogi Berra.

If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.

Yogi Berra

Therefore, we always try to plan every action and move we make. We always plan ahead.


But there is another factor that can have a huge impact on our plans and that is “Intent”.

Because, intent also play an important role. Intent determine your actions.

As our beloved Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has once said.

The reward of deeds depends upon the intention.

Sahih Bukhari, Kitab-ul-Imaan, Hadith No. 53

And here are some other quotes on intent.

INTENT reveals desire; ACTION reveals commitment.

Steve Maraboli

Our intention creates our reality.

Wayne Dyer

If you are not indented to do something, nobody is going to make you do that. Because, intent comes from heart and if you are not willing to do something, there is a great chance you are not going to do it anyway. And even if someone make or ask you to do that, you will either mess up or not do it the right way.

All our plans, goals, roadmaps are of no use if we are not intended to do it or our intent is not right.

In my last (and only full time) job, when we decided that it’s time to grow as a company and take it to the next level. We made huge plans and tried to plan out almost everything that includes budgeting, resources, future team structure, etc. We started hiring new people, created new roles, assigned responsibilities. We (as a company) hired some of the industry’s best minds as per their roles and responsibilities.

Finally, we hired a new Vice President for Professional Services or new vice-captain for the ship. And this is when things started to get really interesting.

As, one must be extra conscious and careful when growing or moving fast. Because, sometime one small mistake or poor decision at one point can turn out to be a biggest blunder or loss later. The same rule apply here as well.

That Vice President, or VP in short, was potentially one of the best candidate and most suited for the job (by the book and history at-least). Just like any other leader, our CEO’s plan was to give him full control on everything and help him do the things his way to best utilize his talent and execute his (company’s) plans. And he (VP) took over the responsibility and assumed the role in best way possible.

But!! Where is this company now? Where is that dream team?

I don’t want to blame anyone for anything here. I am just building up a hypothesis and trying to explain my point to answer my question. And the question is what went wrong that caused a good man his fortune and gave up on his dream? If everything was planned out than what force the company to go out of business?

And I believe it’s the INTENT that make the difference here. We can plan out everything, but, we can’t control other people intentions. Similarly, they can’t control ours. But, on the other hand intent can control actions and the people. Because, intent is what you really want or desire. And nobody really know your desire or intent until you tell them.

I will leave it up here with a big WHAT and a WHY.

Please share your thoughts and differences in comments below. I would really like to hear your point of view about this intent vs. planning comparison and my hypothesis.

Take care. Allah Hafiz.

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