Plan Design

A business plan is a written summary of your business, its financial overview and plan for success. Most business plans list out exactly every aspect of the business and list strategies for management, financial planning, human resources, expansion, marketing and future consequences. The plan will also itemize strengths and weaknesses and list the probability for future success or failure.

If you are to succeed in your business venture, you need to make sure that you’re paying proper attention to every aspect of your business plan. That includes your current state, your future prospects and very importantly, market research. If you want to go on to become your own boss, you need to make sure that you present a business plan that will get your investors’ attention.

Why Should You Write a Business Plan?

Although writing a business plan seems easy when you first look at the project, it is quite difficult to factor in all the different features that will affect a business in the future. To make a truly viable business plan you need to predict future economical markets, raw materials, demand and supply. These different factors are extremely fluid and are prone to change with time. So much can change that you may start to think that making business plan seems redundant or useless since there is no way for it to be 100 percent accurate.

However, a well-thought out and professionally written plan or a business plan template and sample from leading resources like Shopify will definitely help you as a business owner and any potential investor to take an objective look at your business. This further allows you and them to pinpoint areas that can contribute to success. In fact, your business plan will also play an important in securing financing that will help your business considerably during difficult times. Remember that this plan may be the only thing a potential investor will ever see from your business before they make a choice to support you or not.

So How Do You Make Your Business Plan Pop?

  • Be succinct – The US Small Business Administration website points out a simple fact: If you write business plans as personal promises of what to do, you are more likely to keep to the schedule and ensure results. Instead of thinking of the plan as far flung goals, promise yourself that the key points will happen. Think about your business strategy as if you’re making promises to a loved one and stick to it while creating your business plan. This attention to detail and success encapsulates exactly what you require to make your business plan successful.
  • Be professional – Don’t be swayed by the numerous business plan sample websites available online. Read the samples, but make sure you stick to simple professional language that conveys your idea clearly. Good, clear ideas do not need to be complicated by working in those five dollar words. Your business goals and plans should stand for themselves. Do not submit rough business plan samples to investors or banks as it reflects a careless attitude. Be as professional as possible while writing and convey exactly what you have in mind.
  • Skip the legalese – A business plan is not a legal document. It just conveys exactly what you, the business owner, want to do in the future with the business. It is not a binding contract and you have every right to adapt, modify, and change the business plan as a fluid business situation evolves. As a result, legal language is not required. Read a few simple business plan samples listed on websites like the Australian SBA and then use a local template to frame your business plan.
  • Include failure potentials – An excessively sunny business plan does not make sense. Failure is an integral part of every business, and almost 60 percent of all new businesses fail in the first year of business. A good business plan template will list pros and cons, sales forecasts for the business and potential pitfalls as well.
  • List expense budgets – For investors, this is the most critical part of a business plan. The business plan should list average price of a unit or product, sales costs, payroll, rentals, insurance, manufacturing, and raw materials in a tabulated form for review. This is also the toughest part to write and it would be a good idea to hire a professional to write this part of the business plan.

You can choose to write the plan yourself or you can use a professional consultant to do the job and they will help you plan your business in the first few baby years. For investors, it provides a comprehensive idea of how you plan to finance, expand and run your day-to-day business. Having a comprehensive business plan will provide the business owner a systematic guide for the future as well.

Originally posted by Dane Carlson on March 21, 2014 in You Don't Say.

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