Do you want investors? Searching for a loan? Do you need to inquire for a grant? Or has the time just come to perform a self-analysis of your business? Are you expanding your business? Searching for new markets? Searching for the next level in your business? All of these are times that you require a business plan? What are the nuts and bolts of a business plan?
All business plans have more or less the exact sections some have identical content.
But when they arrive in the investor’s or lender’s desk some stay where they are and others pass into the “I’ll read them later” pile or worse still the garbage can! So how can you create your business plan readable and memorable for all the best reasons?
Let us look at what actually is at the core of a business plan. A business plan is a methodology which defines and incorporates the activities that are essential to get a business idea to turn into a business and gives expectations that prove it’ll be profitable. To put it differently, it’s the hook to get an investor and let them know that your idea is innovative and will be quite profitable. Note those two important words: innovative and rewarding. No investor will be interested in a business that’s not likely to be lucrative enough to give them their investment back and a very healthy profit. Now, what might be an interesting word – innovative. For a business to succeed it must have something that differs from the rest of the companies working in exactly the same market. After all, if your organization will be exactly the same as all others, they are barely likely to move over and allow you to take their customers. No, your company should have something different that will attract these customers away from what they buy all of the time. So innovative in some way, be it goods, business model or assistance.
Let us add another word that you will need to show in your business plan – feasible. Your investor or lender would like to see that your organization will be viable. If you do a Google search about the “Internet Bubble” of circa 1995 you will understand that thousands of investors spent and lent to new-fangled internet firms that promised to create them millions of dollars in easy gains. Memories are long and traders look to find that new companies will be workable for the for seeable future so that they continue to receive an income flow and have a fantastic likelihood of receiving their investment or loan back.
Your business plan should be a communication tool promoting an original idea that serves to attract and convince people that you have the capability to execute the strategy by establishing and managing the corporation.
At first, we emphasized other reasons for business planning. Besides raising funds, your business plan is also the ideal tool for you to evaluate the viability of your business.
So that’s the NUTS of a business plan, let us look at the BOLTS that hold it together:
Professional: Internally it ought to be well structured with an index, page numbers, headings, and bulleted paragraphs which explain the intricate matter. Loads of images break up the boredom of a lot of words. Externally it ought to be professionally bound and have a vibrant and attractive cover page. It makes sense that full company information and contact information should also be on the front cover.
Tempting. Written in a manner that encourages the reader to evaluate the possibilities of going into the business. Look after the writing style, be succinct but not short and not so wordy that fatigue beckons. Keep to the stage, zwoding extraneous information that does not encourage your business planning or business model. Avoid jargon and in the event, you must use initials to make sure that the first instance is spelled out entirely with the initials in brackets afterward.
Dynamic. You’ve got to be creative, but with some restraint. It’s better if you tell a story but not one which is found in the fiction section of a library. If the business you suggest doesn’t invite enormous flourishes, save them. It may be counterproductive to divert the reader. Creativity is important so long as you emphasize something about the business and is there to keep the interest of the reader. Creativity must only be used to paint a picture of how the business will function in the future.
Accurate. Clarity is essential, but so is accuracy and truthfulness about the current state of your organization and its future goals. Just a small amount of license is given by the reader but they do expect you to be honest about your own figures, client numbers, and condition of the creation of your goods.
Ordered. Guide your reader through your business plan and place supporting documentation within the appendix of this report. Even though the crucial information should be in the main parts of the report, in the appendices you may include secondary data, market research results, resumes of professionals and some other letters by a recommendation or positive report.
The last major BOLT which will hold your business plan together is CARE. Your business plan isn’t just something you need to rush through to be able to receive your funding. It’s the description of what your business looks like today and what you want it to look like in the future. Most business plans begin at about 20 pages long for a small business set out in the world to a maximum of 50 pages for a business looking for major funding. Whatever the size of your business plan, and please practice writing complicated ideas succinctly, it ought to be written with care – after all a fantastic business plan is a roadmap to company success!