The life of an entrepreneur is exciting, busy and at times, stressful. The emotions felt when starting a business can be diminished if a plan is devised.
A business plan is needed for potential investors and your own records. A business plan varies depending on the company type. The business plan template is forever changing, however, the basic outline is more or less the same.
10 Steps to Creating a Basic Business Plan:
- Summary– a brief overview of your company that includes the mission statement, target market, future plans, etc.
- Market Analysis– data on your business industry that includes characteristics, trends, target markets, pricing, etc.
- Company Description– detailed description of how your business will operate.
- Organization/Management Information– this section will describe business hierarchy and individual members of the business team.
- Marketing & Sales Strategies– here you will describe how you will build your business; includes strategies for sales, communications, etc.
- Service or Product Line– a description of your product or service; includes details, copyright information, etc.
- Funding Request– overview of how much capital will be needed to start your business.
- Financials– this section will provide all information on the financial performance of the business.
- Appendix– this addition is provided to individuals when requested and is not a part of the public business plan; contains information that may be requested including legal documents, permits, contracts, credit history, etc.
- Revise, Edit, Review– just as a business is forever growing, the business plan should as well.
These 10 steps are a basic outline of how to devise your business plan. A plan is necessary regardless if funding is needed. A plan gives the owner a hardcopy template of how the business should flow – It is a tool to look back on in case of revision and reorganization.
Many resources are available for entrepreneurs on how to devise a complete business plan and/or marketing strategy. The entrepreneur is always growing and encountering new resources, mentors, and life experiences that aid in building the ideal, successful business.
For more information and templates to fit your business plan needs check out:
U.S. Small Business Association – Small Business Planner
Entrepreneur – How to Create a Business Plan
SCORE – Business Planning Templates
An urban planning PhD student finding peace in creating a balance between the mind, body, soul, & environment.
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