Why do I need a business plan
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You wouldn't set out on a cross-country trip from California to New York without a map!!! Don't invest in your business without a plan!
In thirty years of business experience, we have yet to see a business succeed that did not have some sort of written business plan.
A business plan is often the entry-level requirement to getting government money, investor capital or bank loans. Although, you may have a complete picture of the business in your head, investors and bankers need to see if you really have an understanding of the business, have thought it through and will be able to pay them back!
Preparing a complete plan can be a long and daunting task. But in the end, the business owner often sees things from a new perspective and has mitigated major risks. The business plan is not just for banks and investors. The plan also supplies you with a blueprint for your success in your new business. The plan provides you with the direction of your company and is a guidepost for your employees too. Since you have control, you can change your business plan as your company grows and as you get more ACTUAL information.
The primary job of a business owner is to manage and run a business. The term manage implies the task of planning and execution. The process of business planning helps reduce risks. Entrepreneurship is often the ability to build a business by taking calculated risks. If you are putting your life savings on the line, endangering your family's stability and borrowing other people's money, it is your responsibility as a business owner to only the most carefully calculated risk. The business planning process does not guarantee success, but dramatically decreases your chances of failure.
Some of the questions a functional working business plan will answer:
- What are the steps to starting my business?
- Do I need a demographic study?
- How do I identify my target market?
- Who is my target market?
- How do I fund my business?
- How do I select my office or store sites?
- What about branding?
- Do I need protection for trademark, copyright, intellectual property?
- Do I need help in information systems planning?
- What are my needs in the areas of analysis and design?
- Do I need to develop an operations process and workflow analysis?
- How do I develop performance improvement?
- Am I ready for business automation planning?
- How do I select computer hardware?
- How do I implement a software evaluation and selection process?
- How do I develop project management and facilitation strategies?
- How do I prepare an internet and web site strategy?
- How do I select financial systems?
- How do I implement manufacturing or outsourcing systems?
- Do I need to conduct feasibility studies?
- How do I develop cost containment strategies?
- How can I do a good job of contingency planning?
- Who is on my team? Do I need an attorney, an accountant, a web designer?
- At the very least, YOU NEED US!!!