Business Plan: A structured approach
A majority of entrepreneurs accept the need for creating a business plan however, a few often fail to realize that an effective and comprehensive business plan can lay down a road map to success for their businesses.
While a professionally crafted business plans does not guarantee success, for entrepreneurs with great business ideas, it certainly increases the probability of them crossing the finishing line sensationally.
Often a business plan is used as a sales document with an aim to impress an investor, rather than provide an extensive strategic and operational road map of the venture. This often fails to achieve the desired results, leading to entrepreneurs blaming the vehicle i.e. the usefulness of a business plan rather than the quality of goods being transported, i.e. the content included in the document. A business plan needs to capture the essence of a business and its delivery mechanism to attract investments.
At BPlanExperts we believe that without a proper structure, or by using cookie cutter templates a business plan become rudderless with essential information and data ending up in a haphazard and reactive manner, thereby losing its basic intent and purpose.
If drafted professionally, a business plan has the ability to serve multiple activities, as shown below.
- Maximize on opportunities: Comprehensive plans help businesses to channelize their finance, resources and most prominently their time in the course of success. Capitalization of a business idea can improved with the creation of a well crafted strategic business plan which distinctly demonstrates the true value of a business idea. Simply put, a business plan is the first marketing tool for a business.
- Focused to the script: Often entrepreneurs are so fanatical about their business idea that they lose sight of reality during the startup phase of their businesses. As the sea of emotions, doubts, fear and exhaustion clinches, the sight of a business plan helps stick to predefined goals and objectives . A business plan can prevent entrepreneurs from taking wrong decisions in the silhouette of emotions.
- Look into the future: Comprehensive business plans acts as a catalyst to help manage entrepreneurial businesses more efficiently and effectively. It assists to put strategic considerations onto a paper and consequently allows stakeholders to get better visibility of the business. A business plan can detail alternate future scenarios and set specific objectives and goals for the short, medium and long term. An understanding of the market and the environment in which the business expects to operation are considerably enriched by a thoroughly researched and analyzed business plan.
- Secure Funds: To source money from investors or any other structured agency it is imperative to have a business plan that outlines the future potential of a business and communicates an entrepreneur’s vision in a compelling manner. A formal business plan is the basic requirement for seeking funds, be it debt or equity. Most investors will not even consider a funding request without reading through a business plan that is customized to match their regulatory framework.
- Operationalizing the business: Execution is key to a business and thus prioritizing jobs, setting up goals and measuring performance prove vital for the long term sustainability of a venture. Researching the desired market segment and formulating strategies to deliver products and services through the business planning process will ensure that nothing is left to chance from a business perspective.
- Commitment towards the business: Last but not the least it is important for entrepreneurs to show their commitment to investors, partners and allied stakeholders. Drafting a comprehensive business plan portrays a high level of seriousness and solid intentions towards the success of a business. It is the first building block of a potential high rise.