First, don’t freak out! While writing a business plan can seem intimidating at first, it is only putting down on paper the ideas you have in your head about starting your business. To make it easier to understand, think of it as a roadmap to your new venture’s success. Just as a map has streets, intersections and mileage information your business plan has similar information about the trip that you are taking into entrepreneurship. So think of your business plan as your GPS to your desired destination – succeeding in your new business.
I suggest to all my clients to break down the task right by first writing a one page summary of your business idea, marketplace research, financials, and sales strategies. Think of this as an expanded version of the “back of the napkin” business plan. It helps you to compile your thoughts and put them down on paper in black-and-white. Also, the idea of writing one page is far less daunting than writing a full business plan for submitting to the bank for a new business loan.
Remember almost all business owners are not MBA graduates with advanced knowledge of how to write a business plan. They are just people like you the dream of starting your own business. They have been able to put together a business plan and make their company succeed. So you can too.
- Brevity is Key – Short is Sweet
Nobody wants to read a large business plan, including the bank you are hoping to obtain a new business phone from nor the SBA loan officers. So you do not have to read write a large document. Also, you want to write a plan that will be your GPS guidance for your business as you proceed. This report should be referred to continuously to see if you are on target with your projections and are following the strategic tactics planned as you started this firm.
- Write for your readers
As you prepare your business plan, keep in mind who your readers of the report will be such as bankers, investors, potential partners and key employees. Avoid the use of industry-specific jargon for explaining products and services. Instead, use plain English that everybody can understand. So they will appreciate the value of your idea and your business venture for those technical people. You can include an attachment explaining details of your product.