A written description of your business’s future. A document that tells what and how you plan to do it. If you write down a paragraph describing its strategy, you’ve written a plan, or at least the seed of a plan.
These plans are deep-rooted strategic. You start here, today, with certain resources and abilities. You want to get to a there, a point in the future (usually three to five years out) at which time it will have a different set of resources and abilities as well as greater profitability and increased assets. Your plan shows how you will get from here to there.
5 things to know before starting up your B-plan
1. How Long Should Your Plan Be?
- Keep it short. Don’t use long complicated sentences
- Use business charts.
- Physical look of your text to be simple and inviting.
- Bullet points are good for lists. They help readers digest information more easily.
2. When Should You Write It?
Viewing your plan as a fundraising tool is just the beginning of the story. You’ll use the plan for so much more-for managing yourself, for operating the business and for recruiting.
3. Why Should You Write A Business Plan?
As tools such as spreadsheets and plan writing software have grown in importance, some critics say business plans have become stacked with complex financials that are often backed up by little more than guesswork.
4. Determine Your Goals and Objectives
Ask these questions to yourself and find how many you can answer. By answering them you’ll be able to determine your goals and objectives.
- How determined am I to see this succeed?
- Am I willing to invest my own money and work long hours for no pay, sacrificing personal time and lifestyle, maybe for years?
- What’s going to happen to me if this venture doesn’t work out?, If it does succeed, how many employees will this company eventually have?
- What will be its annual revenues in a year? Five years?
5. Don’t Forget About Marketing
- If you’re a professional, what’s the value you and your service offer? How are you different from your competition.
- Your audience should be in terms of ever-expanding ripples, kind of networking will be needed here.
- Once you have decided who your audience is, figure out what they’re watching, listening to, reading and doing online, then customize your message for that medium and audience.
- Marketing should be fundamental part of that plan. It’s what drives the business, so it can’t be an afterthought.
Your initial iteration of the business shouldn’t attempt to be the business in miniature; rather it should focus on what are the key risks or uncertainties and reduce those as thoroughly, quickly, and cheaply as possible. That will give you and your financial backers the confidence to invest in feeling out the business.