Business plans may appear stiff-collared, but they have a role in the startup world. It’s unlikely to be framed in the workplace, but it may one day be worthy of the honor.
You’ll need a business plan to convince an angel investor or a bank to lend you money. And not just any notes or scribbles on a pizza box or napkin.
Bah. Isn’t that homework?
But, like bookkeeping, loan applications, and 404 redirects.
Don’t panic. How to develop a business plan without becoming bored. This page is jam-packed with business plan tips, tricks, and recommendations to help you complete your non-existent proposal.
What Is a Business Plan? Why Do You Need One So Badly?
A business plan defines your company’s mission, goals, and target market. Your current situation Your desired future
- What your company does and who it serves
- Where your company is today
- Where do you wish to go?
- How you’ll make it happen
- What might stop you from expanding your business?
- How you’ll conquer the challenges
- An initial company plan is not needed. Although it is beneficial for several reasons:
Get a Bank Loan: Banks will check your business’s legitimacy and ability to repay a loan before accepting it. They want to know how you plan to use the loan and pay it back. To avoid loan default, lenders look for a strong company plan.
Convert Traders: Investors, like lenders, want to ensure they’ll get their money back. They need to see your business strategy to trust you with money.
Keep Focused: Chasing the next great thing is easy. A business strategy keeps you on track and focused. Your company strategy can help you avoid spending time and resources on unproductive activities.
Let’s look at the data instead of the reasoning:
- Writing a company strategy may increase annual growth by 30%.
- Those that prepare a formal business strategy are 16% more likely to succeed.
- A survey of 65 high-growth businesses revealed 71% had minor business strategies.
- Making a business strategy has been demonstrated to increase business performance.
Bulletproofing Your Small Business Plan
Before we get into the specifics of how to develop a business plan, here are some general guidelines to get you started:
Professionalism and Trustworthiness.
Resist the desire to make your business plan adorable or innovative. While you should always let your identity and originality come through, business plans are more formal papers.
Similar to terms and conditions, employment contracts, or financial disclosures. You want your strategy to be consistent so investors, lenders, partners, and potential workers can locate the information they need.
Create an entertaining brief business plan for internal consumption. Keep it legal for authoring this external document.
Recognize your target market.
Your official corporate plan document applies to lenders, investors, partners, and long-term future workers. Keep in mind these names and faces as you plan.
Think of what they would want to see, what questions they will ask, and what might convince them (or frighten them). Cut the jargon and customize your wording so that others can comprehend it.
Those are busy folks, remember. Hundreds of applications and startup funding are anticipated to be examined every month. Keep your company strategy brief and timely. Include the most relevant facts and eliminate portions that will not affect your decision-making.
Invest time in research.
You may not have solutions to all the areas in your company strategy. Don’t skip them!
Your audience might like:
- Information about your consumers in great detail.
- Solid numbers and mathematical data to support your financial assertions and estimations.
- Detailed information about your rivals and possible risks.
- Market opportunities and strategy support data.
Your replies cannot be hypothetical or thoughtful. To back up your assertions, you need research. If you don’t have the data yet, invest in acquiring it time and money. This information is not only necessary for your business strategy. Your company needs to own, operate and develop.
Your company may be ambitious, but you need to temper your excitement just a tad. The last thing you want is for an angel investor to call you out and say, “I’m out” before even giving you a chance.
People looking at your company and assessing your strategy have been around the block a few times—they know a thing or two about reality and fiction. Your strategy should be a success blueprint. It should be a step-by-step plan for getting from point A to point B.