If you are going into business for the first time or setting up a new business in addition to your existing one, its important to complete a written plan. It may seem unnecessary or boring but it is important.
Its not important to actually have the plan – its important to go through the planning process, answering all the questions that need to be answered honestly to give yourself the best chance of success.
80% of businesses that have been started fail to make it to five years. None would have started out to fail. Either they did not do what was on their plan, or they had no plan or they did not cover all the bases before they started out.
Taking the time to prepare a proper plan costs very little – Running a loss making business will cost you dearly every month and for months and years after you call it a day.
Your business plan will consist of the following
I. Table of Contents.
II. Executive Summary. – Brief explanation of the idea, 1, 3 and 5 year plan, who the customers are and expected outcomes
III. General Company Description.
IV. Products and Services. – Exactly what are you planning to sell and how will you price them.
V. Marketing Plan. – This contains evidence of your market research – is there a market for your product, is there sufficient need for it, whats the competition like, whats your plan for getting and keeping customers, why should they buy from you?
VI. Operational Plan. – How will the business run on a day to day level – will you do everything, will you work 20 hours per day, what can you delegate – how good are you at systems, can you lead, manage, delegate, sell, buy?
VII. Management and Organization. – What will the structure look like as the business grows – have you given it much thought? Do you know where you will be operating – are you the best MD for the business or are you better in sales?
VIII. Personal Financial Statement – Whats going to fund the business, how much reserves do you have, how much can you invest, when will the income start arriving, have you considered worst and best cases. Have these numbers been challenged?
IX. Startup Expenses and Capitalization. – What types of initial costs will you have, where will you spend, where will you not spend, How much goods need to be capitalised?
X. Financial Plan. – This is your cash flow projection, your budgets for 3 years, your pricing strategy, your evidence of research into running costs etc.
XI. Appendices. – Supporting information.
XII. Refining the Plan. – How to really challenge yourself so that your plan, if followed will deliver the success you desire.
Plan your business for success – starting today.
We help people complete proper business plans for themselves and not just for the bank – Get one today.