This post is a must read for business owners and those thinking about venturing into new line of business. The post secrets on how to write a successful business plan will give you insight to what a business plan should look like, what it is not; and who a business plan is writing for?
Ready to take control of your career and start a new business? In today’s world, it’s easier than ever to find a trend and turn it into a full-on entrepreneurial venture. As a business owner, you are or soon will be working 60 to 100 hours a week and still not get everything done. if you will be working this hard, you want to make sure it will be worth the effort. This is where a writing a successful business plan comes in. If you follow this simple post of secrets on how to write a successful business plan you will be able to put together a comprehensive business plan that will look so attractive to investors.
The secrets to writing a successful business plan
Many consider a business plan to be a formal document containing five key elements:
- Business Goals
- The reasons why these goals are attainable
- A plan for reaching these goals
- Data backing the uniqueness of the products and services to be sold.
- Supporting information about the organization and team attempting to reach those goals.
A business plan is comprised of these items listed above, but it is much more than a physical document; it is a structure process to test ideas to determine if they feasible and financially attractive. If viewed this way, a business plan becomes a road-map to successful implementation of the business idea. This road map then morphs into tactical plans and budgets. During the process of developing a business idea, you develop a consistent set messages, based on facts and analysis, describing your business idea, which will be used in discussions with founders, inventors, customers, board members and who ever have use for it.
Some events that trigger the need to write a business plan:
- Starting a new business (The reason)
- Growing an existing business through new products, new channels and new market
- Acquiring a business or franchising your existing business
- Liquidating the business and the need to provide a potential buyers with information about the business. They will be interested in the past as a benchmark. But as have already reaped the benefits of these accomplishments, potential buyers are interested in the future as you see it.
Business plan is not
By now, you have already know what a business plan is and what it is not used for. But what is the flip side? Clearly, a business plan is not a guarantee that your business idea will be successful or that you will be able to obtain a funding for your business. Since most of the information is forward looking, it will only be as good as assumptions used, and if the idea is not well planned and packaged and supported in the business plan, some readers might have different perceptions of these forecasts.
When you do a web search on why you should write a business plan, in many cases, fear is invoked that if you do not have a professionally prepared business plan, you will incur the wrath of the banks. Many at times this type of draconian advice comes from websites that want to sell you a business plan template, write the plan for you, or sell you a book. The truth is that some of the start-ups do not seek funding so the business plan is likely written for yourself and it can be of what ever quality you think good. But the more attention you give to your business plan, and the planning process, the more that potential weaknesses can be identified and mitigations put in place the better your chances of business success.
A successful business plan is ever evolving. Its never finished, just as your business is not static. Your goals and your approaches change as your business changes. However, this is no excuse not to write a business plan. If you are starting a business in an area in which you are unfamiliar with you might start with feasibility study plan which part of business plan to test the idea and gain experience in the the new area.
An individual can also become obsessed with writing a business plan that he will be always looking for perfection. But there is no such thing as being perfection in writing of a successful business plan. At some point, you need to stop planning and start working.
If you are a start-up and are still working on your business plan after two months of concentrated effort or one year with part time attention, then you need to examine your process over again and probably get some help or change who ever is helping you.
Who is business plan written for?
Most start-ups think that the goal of business plan is to get or seek funding for their business, a business plan is written for you to help you decide whether or not to start or grow a business, to set goals and benchmarks, to use the process for developing a set of compelling and consistent message describing your business and why you will be successful, and to understand the two roles you have as owner and employee.
When you put together a good business plan and its financial section, you will determine if these ideas are financially viable. When you put together the operating, marketing and organizational business plan sections, will be more positioned in understanding every thing involved with running the business and whether this is what you really want to do. A good business plan is much more than assembly of independent fact finding and analysis; it integrates all business aspects and clarifies how one part affects the other:
- The operational and financial forecasts you build into your business plan will be your first set of targets, which will measure your actual results and accomplishment. Through your research of competitive practices, you will benchmark your forecaster results against industrial norms.
- Your executive summary will include statements of what your business is about, the customer need that you are satisfying, how your products and services is differentiated from the competition, and why you will be successful.