5 Steps to Writing a Simple Business Plan
When it comes to writing a business plan, many people often overcomplicate the process. You don’t have to get caught up in that web. Use these seven steps to create your own simple business plan.
Simple Business Plan Step #1: Create a name for your business.
Coming up with the ideal name for your business will require you to place yourself in the shoes of your target market. As an example, you’re a customer seeking scenic paintings. You come across a business by the name of Findings Galore which carries a wide range of prized possessions such as trophies, plaques, clocks, glass, silver, and landscape paintings by well-renowned artists. Although the business has what you’re seeking, your immediate thought based on the business’ name is that they stock items that other persons find useless. If the name were changed to Scenic Arts Central, the name in itself would capture your attention, since it identifies with your need. While it is important to select a name that aligns with your business’ purpose, it is just as fitting to have one with brand durability.
Simple Business Plan Step #2:Use plain language. A simple business plan wouldn’t be one without unembellished language.
Remember your reader is seeking to understand the nature of your business. Using technical language will not achieve such an outcome. You want to inform your reader in the shortest possible manner about the purpose of your business and how it intends to fulfill it. Besides being succinct, use bullet points. With this approach, your reader will be able get through the information easily. Provide brief explanations with each point. Moreover, ask yourself this question. Would my readers be able to skim through this business plan in five minutes or less and get the gist of the matter? If your answer is no, you may have to go back to the drawing board and make some tweaks.
Simple Business Plan Step #3: Get to the point. Ideally, your simple business plan should be 20 to 30 pages long. If you have appendices, this may take up an additional 10 pages. Business plans more than 40 pages long tend to go into greater details than required. Such business plans diminish the true essence of what you’re seeking to convey.
Simple Business Plan Step #4: Describe the vision, mission, and goals and objectives of your business. Your vision should highlight what your company will look like several years from its inception. Will you have employees on staff when you start? How many employees will you be hiring? Is your business going to be in one location? The mission of your business will focus on the work your company performs as well as what sets it apart from its competitors. The goals and objectives of your business will be an elaboration of the mission and vision of your company. Include a specific timeframe for achieving each goal. Once you’ve established your vision, mission, and goals and objectives, develop a SWOT analysis to evaluate your company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Such information will be useful in determining your business’ capacity to thrive under positive and negative conditions.
Simple Business Plan Step #5: Develop a financial plan. Your financial plan includes information pertaining to your company’s current or projected budget. Having a budget will allow you to control your cash flow in an efficient manner. You can use bar charts to highlight your sales, gross income, net profits, and other related expenses.
Once you focus on the key components of your business’ purpose, you’ll be able to write a simple business plan in two hours or less.