Writing a business plan is perhaps the most important job before starting a business. A comprehensive and effective business plan is the main idea that designs the working of any business. Business plan also proves handy if you want to attract investors towards your business. You can easily convince them to invest in your business through a well-written plan.
Therefore, it is extremely important to keep all the matters clear before writing any business plan. A complete and operational business plan must include detail of every important point. Along with that, the business plan should cover business for a long time period. Few of the most important points to be included in the business plan are:
- Executive Summary
- Business Description
- Team and company
- Market Strategy
- Financial plan
- Operation and management
Never underestimate a well written business plan as its failure can ultimately result in failure of your business venture altogether. Following are few important points that will assist you in writing a perfect business plan for solid foundation and smooth growth of your business.
1. Research the Market
Getting complete information about the market you are trying to make a place is the initial part of writing your business plan. There are two types of market research. The primary market research is gathering information from your potential customers. They are actual part of your market and you can get firsthand information from them.
The second type is secondary market research.This can be done by getting information from secondary sources regarding size of the market. It includes number of people living in a city, percentage of people with particular economic status in an area etc. This type of research is different for business setup in Dubai from a company in Toronto. This type of market research is mandatory for a realistic and comprehensive business plan.
2. Understand your competition
You must be aware about the type of competition you can face in the market. This competition can be from your competitors in the market along with natural factors or environment of market. After understanding the type of competition you are going to face, it will be necessary to point out how you can defeat your competitors by adopting successful strategy. You have to prove yourself worthy and different from your competitors.
3. Cover all key areas
Your plan must be complete in all aspects covering the whole picture and atmosphere of your business. It should include different issues and their solutions along with the advancement of your business with the passage of time.
For this purpose, you must be fully aware about different aspects of business or get information from those already in the type of company you are willing to start. Leaving important things (competition, marketing, financials, operations etc.) behind will make your plan completely ineffective.
4. Make it short
Making a detailed business plan according to demand is necessary. But that doesn’t mean that it will be too long to read and understand. It should be easily understandable to everyone including your business partners and investors. You can achieve both your targets (make you plan comprehensive and in a limit) by writing important points only with necessary details in it. The details could be summarized to avoid unnecessary expansion of plan.
5. Know your clients
Any business primarily depends on clients for its growth. Therefore, the information regarding preferences and dislikes of clients is a must for viability of any business plan. Clients in different markets have different economic status and priorities. These things should be discussed while writing a business plan.
6. Know your readers
Usually small entrepreneurs require assistance from investors and they write business plan for them. In this case, you must be well aware about your readers (potential investors). Your plan must be able to convince them that investing in your business is a far better choice for them as compared to investing in someone other’s business or putting their wealth in a bank.
7. Be realistic with time and resources
One must be hopeful of getting his/her business on top in minimum possible amount of time. But that doesn’t mean that calculations should be made on mere hopes.
A business plan should be based on possible resources one can get along with the time it may take according to competition and other factors. Otherwise, it will only increase frustration when you see your business progressing slowly as compared to your desires. This may ultimately result in complete failure of business.
8. Based on documents and statistics
Another important way to make your business plan realistic and effective is to prove it with statistics and documents. Things like costs and sales must be provided with statistics. It is also important that the strategy you are adopting have already been successfully applied by others. Others will believe in your plan to be result-oriented if its important points have already been proved successful.
9. Make it easy to understand
Another important matter in this regard is making your plan easy to understand for others. Even a person without having business background should be able to understand it fully. You can do so by avoiding unnecessary technical language. An easily understandable plan will improve your chances of getting investment from non-technical investors.
10. Review your plan
Even if you took all precautionary measures during writing down plan, it is still necessary to review your plan after its completion. It is always possible that few important points are missed that can be added after review. You can also take assistance from others for complete and critical review of your plan.
11. Take opinions from others
A complete and comprehensive plan is not a job of a single person. Opinion and advice from your friends and experts in your field is extremely important in making your plan free from weaknesses and shortcomings.
12. Set your goals clear
Main idea behind any business is getting profit on continuous basis. This should be your ultimate goal. Defining your goal will make it easier for you to devise an interconnected plan where all points are interlinked to achieve main objective.
13. Be creative
Proving your points with previous success of someone else is right, but you should not copy others’ strategy for your own plan. It is not necessary that a strategy that worked for others will also prove beneficial for you. You must be creative and present something new and unique. There are more chances for success of a unique idea than the one that is already executed by several ones before.
14. Be aware of possible future problems
Businesses have different problems in their beginning and these problems may change or increase with passage of time. A comprehensive plan addresses all these problems that it may face in future as well as in its start.
Brenda Cagara is a part of the business consultant team RIZ & MONA in Dubai. Her work is to assist the formation of companies and business setup in dubai. Other services she takes a part in are visa processing, bank account opening, product registration and local sponsors. Along with this, she vigilantly manages to pursue her writing career. Since the past five years, she has been writing on different niches. The top ones are business, taxation and finance.