Creating a Business Plan

Creating a solid business plan is one of the most important things you can do as you go through the process of starting and expanding your venture. A business plan is essentially a written outline that evaluates and defines all aspects of your business including the proposed product or service, the targeted market, and the venture’s economic potential.

Having this information will be useful to you in a number of ways. First, it will help you to stay focused on your business goals. It will also come in handy as you begin to raise capital for your venture. With this document, banks, commercial lenders, and investors can get to know your business and can make an informed decision about whether they should approve funding. Finally, by committing your plans to paper, it will be easier for you or a consulted advisor to point out any potential problems or pitfalls.

What You Should Include in Your Business Plan

  • Your Vision Statement: This will be a concise outline of your business purpose and goals.
  • Your Intended Product or Service: You should include a breakdown of the products you want to produce or offer. Be clear about how you want to manufacture, resell, or liquidate your product line. If you are service provider, then explain clearly what service(s) you offer.
  • Your Market and Marketing Strategies: Make sure to define your niche market as well as the marketing strategies you want to implement.
  • A Financial Assessment: Define your capital needs as well as your projected income. Provide information about how you would handle cash flow problems.

Here are a few sites you can go to for more information on making a business plan, including templates, tools, and sample plans: