At the end of every successful business venture, there is a plan. Most plans don’t even have to be extensive. Some great ones are strong, yet flexible.
Having a good business plan can be the foundation that helps you become one of the few businesses that succeed. Only two out of ten businesses that succeed within the first 18 months of conception. That’s right – most businesses fail. If you have a good plan, though, the chances of that happening will significantly decrease. You wouldn’t start building a house without a blueprint, so why would you start a business without a plan? A plan is essential at the beginning of a company because it provides a direction. Your plan should help you start thinking about things like what it is you’re doing, who you’re marketing to, etc.
You have to plan well and stick to it. People like franchises because they have a successful system put in place or a good plan that is proven to work. The biggest mistake some franchises make is changing their plan or altering the system which sometimes leads to failure.
Plans aren’t just for new business ventures, either. Many growing companies use plans as well. A growing company will use and adjust a plan to capture more market shares or implement a new strategy. Plans for growing companies are essential for getting funding from banks or venture capitalists. You should be prepared for your business plan to be examined, sometimes harshly, by potential investors whether you are a start-up or a growing company.
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Writing a plan can also tell you if the business you are getting into is actually a good idea. You can find out a lot from your plan, like how much it’s going to cost you and how much you project to make. Will it be more effort than it is worth? Sometimes it will be and sometimes you might come out of it with a new plan that is much better. It could even be something completely different than what you originally started planning to do.
Writing a plan is very time consuming, but it is essential if you are planning on starting a successful business. I promise that by developing a plan, you will have so much more clarity on issues you may not have even considered and possibly even open new doors for your business. This plan will show you what you are doing now and what you could be doing in the future. If you would like to see a step by step on how to set up a business plan, check out: Entrepreneur.com