Why do I need a business plan?

A detailed business plan is not just for raising funding; it’s also a useful tool for helping the business owner identify and decide what they want to achieve. Is it to make enough money to live on or do they have grander plans?

A plan should involve more than just monetary targets, it should have an overview of the business, what it does, the key personnel, plus strengths and weaknesses. By defining the target the plan provides a useful stepping stone to making it happen. It helps identify the obstacles to success and makes the business owner think about how they will overcome them.

  • Define what success looks like.
  • Put in writing how you intend to develop/improve your product or service, how it will be marketed and who is responsible for making these things happen.
  • Quantify your base line and what the optimistic sales and expenses are likely to be. Try to be realistic. The plan will be of more use if it is stretching but still achievable.
  • Have a backup up plan. What will you do if circumstances mean that sales and profits are lower than you hoped?