Charlotta Eva September 6, 2020 Business Plan
Before we jump into drafting our business plan, we should think about why we are writing a business plan in the first place. Most business plans are used to secure financing for a business – whether it be a start-up or an existing company looking for additional capital. This financing could come from a bank, an equity or venture capital fund, friends, family or just about any other potential investor you could think of.
As a performance tool, it measures the progression of goals in one’s business by tracking, monitoring, as well as evaluating, and can also be used as checkpoints in measuring performance. The world today, is so dynamic that what applied today might not apply tomorrow, and as a result of this dynamism, a good business plan needs to be setup in order to protect one against risks associated with business.
Unless you plan to run your business for your entire life, you will need a plan of succession. If you are the only person who can run and operate your company, it is doomed to fail when you can no longer run it. Create a plan that will spell out what steps will be taken to either sell your company or hand it over to another manager. Develop a system that allows your business to be run without you. An operations manual that details the key components of running your company is the first step in succession planning.
Business plans are very important for internal motivation and the motivation of stakeholders. While writing your plan the first step you should take is to identify the correct business plan template needed. Secondly, you must determine your vision, or where you want to see your business in the next 1-3-5-10 years. Creating this vision becomes a motivational tool because it allows you to see the possibilities you can create for your business if you follow the plan.
Similar to a business plan, the marketing plan spells out how you will market to new customers and retain current ones. The marketing plan should identify your target customers and develop a strategy to reach them effectively. Your marketing plan usually includes market research that gives you a profile of the ideal customer. As with your other plan, it is important to identify any strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that may affect your company’s operations.
Another point of contention is how optimistic you should make your business plan. The problem with making over-optimistic predictions and plans is that these plans could well go wrong. Unforeseen circumstances can always put a spanner in the works. Therefore, it’s wise to err on the side of caution when it comes to devising your business plan. Indeed, it’s wise to predict conservatively and prudently when it comes to assessing the possibilities of future targets, sales and profits. A worst-case scenario will always prove to be less of a shock than one that raises expectations too high.
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