Do you need a Business Plan?
At 23 Degrees we would argue that a business plan is one of the most important things a business owner or board of directors should invest in! Without a clear business plan, how can you or your colleagues know where the business is aiming to go or how it is going to get there?
Despite this, a considerable number of entrepreneurs and business owners don’t have a proper business plan. In many ways, this is like trying to navigate from point A to point B without the aid of a compass, map, or sat nav!
What is a Business Plan?
A business plan is a formal written document. It focuses on the elements of the business which will be used to measure growth and the activities needed to create and support that growth.
Completing a business plan should be one of the first things you do when you first consider setting up your business.
Business plans are not a fixed document so they can and should be reviewed regularly to ensure you meet your goals/objectives and to consider what needs to change over time.
It doesn’t have to be a massive document. We recognise that pages and pages of detail don’t always get referred to regularly enough, in fact, they are often ignored! For this reason, we normally recommend a single page “360-degree plan”. This is relatively quick and easy to produce, it provides a straightforward, succinct, and visual reference that can be referred to regularly.
It covers the key areas of any business, such as financial projections, the strategies you intend to implement to make sure your business stays on track to meet its intended goals, and the objectives and processes need to support and achieve those goals. Additional detail can be added to the single-page 360-degree plan, as required.
Why is having one important?
Having a business plan is an important strategic tool.
It helps business owners and entrepreneurs have clarity in direction and understand the steps to take to help make their business successful both in the short and long term.
And it acts as an accountability tool to measure progress and business progress.
Benefits of having a business plan:
Acts as a safety net
Writing a business plan can be the best way to check that your business is viable.
It acts as your safety net because if you discover while carrying out research that your business idea or concept won’t be viable this will save you a lot of time and money.
A business plan acts as a roadmap for your business because it helps to provide your business with direction.
It allows you to have a plan in place so your business should avoid any “bumps in the road” in the future.
Managing a business is rarely a straight road so even if you need to take a detour, your business plan provides focus on the end destination and this will help you to navigate a new route.
Help to create a marketing strategy for your business
A clear marketing strategy is extremely important to help businesses gain an advantage over their competitors.
Having a business plan can reveal the best marketing strategies that will help your business be more successful and earn more money.
It is essential that you have a business plan in order to attract potential investors.
They will want to make sure you have a genuine business, with a viable future and clarity about what it intends to achieve.
Help your business to grow faster
Another advantage of having a well-written business plan is that they are proven to help your business grow faster.
Studies show businesses that have implemented a business plan typically grow 30% faster than those that don’t have a plan.
Research shows businesses that have implemented a plan also perform better, so they are less likely to suffer from issues such as cash flow problems that would endanger the future of their business.
Contact us today to find out how our team can help you with your business planning.
Discover your business’ ability to grow, based on the four key pillars that support growth in any business by clicking here to take my FREE Business Health Check.