A business plan is essentially a formal written document that outlines the strategies for attaining the organizational objectives of a company, the ways for accomplishing those objectives, and the approximate time-frame in which the objectives will be achieved. It is very important to have a well-organized plan as it gives an indication of how the company will conduct its business. Many companies today begin with a business plan that outlines their organizational objectives, the resources needed to achieve these objectives, and a description of how the company will make a profit. Although this sounds like a lot of information to give a company, it is actually quite simple to create and maintain.
Good business plans provide a clear direction for your organization and should be flexible enough to change along the way as goals are achieved. This flexibility gives organizations the ability to make appropriate changes if necessary as they continue to strive towards their goals. Many non-profit organizations make good use of business plans in order to chart their course through their endeavors. These good business plans are often used as basis for donations, grants, contracts, networking events, and other strategic initiatives that further their purpose.
As organizations strive to achieve their goals, they will need to adjust their plans accordingly. This requires taking a good look at their mission, goals, time frame, resources available, the current and future competition, funding needs, staffing requirements, business model, customer base, and a host of other factors. Often, these factors will dictate various decisions which can affect the success or failure of the organization. For example, if the organization has a marketing strategy but lacks a sales force, they will need to adjust their strategies in order to meet their goals without sacrificing their other goals.
In order to make a successful business plan, it is important that all the necessary information is compiled into one document. This would require researching your chosen field, your target market, the current trends in the market, and various business models that can help you realize your goals. Additionally, there may be other needs that must be met before your business can thrive. For instance, if you plan on starting a center for yoga, you will want to make sure that your equipment will fit in the space. This may require your research on the different types of equipment that are available on the market and various manufacturers. It also includes an evaluation of your startup costs.
After compiling all of this data, it is important that you have it reviewed by various investors. Many times, entrepreneurs try to go it alone when it comes to writing a business plan. However, oftentimes investors will reject the idea because they do not fully understand the plan, or they think it is too complex for an amateur to comprehend. Therefore, it is important that you enlist the help of an expert or several investors in order to ensure that your business plans are profitable and feasible for your specific needs.
When you have completed your executive summary, mission statement, market analysis, and business plans, it is important that you address any feedback or concerns from any investors during this stage. Often times, entrepreneurs do not provide investors with their full plan. As such, an investor will ask you questions concerning the plan that must be answered in order for them to see that your goals are achievable. Finally, if you are seeking funding, it is imperative that you include financial projections for your business in order to prove to potential investors that you have a sound plan.