Developing a Business Plan is one of the very first steps to creating a new business or making a considerable change to an existing business. Here we’ll provide the guidelines for putting together a printable business plan.
These should be kept in a safe place and reviewed periodically to maintain the original focus of your business. Your business plan should be viewed as the blueprint or the operating guidelines for your business.
A successful business plan template will include three critical summaries or descriptions relating to the leaders of the organization, the purpose and the description of the operation itself. Often your business plan will be requested by lenders and investors to evaluate how effective and thoroughly you have planned the business.
The exercise of developing a business plan is both logical and creative. You should ask yourself what goals do you hope for your organization to achieve. Business goals in terms of operations size and and revenue are important. It will be wise to also consider how your business will attract, satisfy and nurture the growth of a customer base.
You may come up with several drafts to your business plan before settling on the final copy. An excellent business plan template is offered by Rocketlawyer.com. Their online business plan form takes you through the process of creating a business plan much like completing an interview.
This will be a good exercise in setting you in the right direction with yours. You’ll be able to answer the questions provided in an easy step-by-step process. Their software produces the document literally while you type responses and answer questions.
Critical Components for Developing a Business Plan
Executive Summary: This is usually the opening segment of the business plan that identifies who the leaders of the organization are. This summary will include the names of the directors of the business along with at least a paragraph describing each contributor’s professional experience background. It is usually helpful to include how many years of experience in related work someone has, along with noted achievements in their career and their educational background. There are several sample business plans available to view online that provide an idea of what to include.
Business Description: In this part of the business plan it is appropriate to include the legal description of the business, starting with the ownership structure. Ownership structure will be a sole proprietorship, corporation, LLC or another form of ownership. The names of non-managing owners, board members, investors and other stakeholders in the business should be identified. In a basic business plan you will include the scope of the business and industry served along with other general details about your business. In a more comprehensive business plan you will save those details for dedicated sections.
Business Summary: Your business summary can be argued as one of the most important parts of your business plan. Many business owners will include their vision statement within this part of the document. In your summary you will communicate your company goals, values and describe what will make your company successful. Some businesses strive for differentiation, or what will set them apart or make their business unique. Other businesses are most effective in applying the “best practices” of an industry while striving to simply serve customers better.
When you are done developing a business plan be certain that your completed document looks professionally produced, is well written and includes no errors. The appearance and readability of this very important document will reflect directly on your organization’s commitment to professionalism and quality. A poorly written business plan is viewed very apprehensively by banks and lending institutions as well as investors.