A business plan is a handbook for your business that frames the goals and details of how you plan to reach those goals. Everyone running a business writes a business plan to assign and keep track of responsibilities and performance of the people involved in the business, manage money spent for it and grow their business.
There are several steps you should follow if you wish to write a business plan successfully.
Keep it concise
A business plan should be short and some excessive details should not be included there. It should also be concise. The purpose of writing a business plan is to reach someone who is supposed to read it, and no one will read it if it is too long and tedious. The business plan should be easy for reading. You should try to write some key points, so someone who reads it can just skim it before focusing on the details. You are advised to use bullets here, in order to draw the reader’s attention.
Address it to the specific audience
Your vocabulary should be understandable to the readers of the business plan. For example, if you are running a scientific project, you should not use scientific language, but instead of it, you should try to express your ideas in a simple, everyday language.
A business plan can be changed along the way
Keep in mind that your business plan is a variable document that can always be altered and complemented. That means that you can update your business plan as your ideas change. For example, you might want to update it after a year or two if you decide to apply for new source of funding.
Don’t let a business plan scare you
Before writing a full business plan, you are advised to stress just the important facts and to build them up later. You should not be afraid that the readers of your business plan will not understand or like what they read. Many of them are not business experts, and they also learn along the way.
What should be included in the business plan?
- Your plans of how you are going to do the job. It is the first part of the plan should be written in the executive summary. Here you are supposed to explain in a nutshell how you are going to make your business work.
- Opportunity is a section that should give information about your business, for example, what you sell, and what types of activities and partnerships you need to make your business a success.
- Execution is a section covering your marketing and sales plan.
- Team and company is a chapter where you describe your existing team and opening working positions. Investors value a good team. You will introduce the idea of how your company functions.
- A financial plan usually consists of monthly projections for the first 12 months and then annual projections for the remaining three to five years.
- The appendix is the space where you attach charts, tables, legal notes or any other useful information which is not included in the main document.