The Secret Behind A Successful Business Plan
The Story of a Meta Business Plan - How To Avoid The Paradigm of the Cash Flow Entrepreneur
Explaining what is a business plan and what it takes to create a successful Business Plan means explaining the very reason for our Company’s existence. Throughout the creation of Joorney, its founder, Benjamin Jarmon, noticed in his circle of entrepreneur friends and acquaintances, a jaunty tendency to apprehend the business creation process; they believed it was enough to have a product or service and sell it. “As long as cash flows in, the rest can wait” you might hear them say. These type of entrepreneurs think of the commercial success of their company before the health and solidity of their structure. We might agree with them to some extent; without sales, there is no salvation. But the road towards success is slightly more complex.
It’s under this somewhat alarming diagnostic that Mr. Jarmon developed a simple solution for those sales-driven entrepreneurs: make them follow a business plan. The reason why is simple, for a business plan is summarized and defined by two fundamental goals: establishing clear entrepreneurial goals and connecting these objectives together in a structured plan. The business plan provides thoughtful context to actionable tasks.
Some of you must argue that any action must be contained in a broader context and that not doing so is just mad. You ask yourself ‘how can someone invest his time and resources when said person doesn’t have a precise path to achieve his objectives?’ Or you may think that his objectives are utopistic or unattainable. You would be surprised to learn how many entrepreneurs of all ages and fields engage in a business venture without having a precise idea of the path they will take or without any tangible goals.
The Archery Range: A Metaphor for Success
Think of an archer with his bow and arrows … if the entrepreneur is the archer, his energy and his actions are the string and bow, the company is the arrow and the target is his goals; then the business plan is nothing but the trajectory and the ballistics of the arrow. When the arrow is released and the business started, the business plan will allow you to hit the target bullseye, which will translate to maximized value, more money flowing in and a sustained business over time. Just as any trajectory can be quantified in a mathematical equation, similarly, the business plan can be quantified in a financial equation; this is actually the case at the end of a business plan where the financial section provides quantified information related to the path over a fixed period of time ( 5 years in most cases). Financial institutions will analyze and pay a lot of attention to your equation. It is their belief over the correctness of your equation and the ability of the arrow to reach the target bullseye that will urge them to put their hands in their pockets.
To go back to the course of the story of Joorney, Mr. Jarmon decided to structure his advisory role and his future business service around the two fundamental goals of a business plan. So he wrote his own business plan for his future business plan writing service… And just as a shoemaker making his own shoes or a chef cooking his own meals, Mr. Jarmon, gets rid of unnecessary complications to get to the essential. And here lies the key to writing a successful business plan: get straight to the point and only reveal what’s relevant for the success of the company while being thorough on each point developped.
It is crucial to understand that a business plan is an essential and vital document for the success of your project. It is crucial, whether it is intended for investors or just used as a roadmap for your personal use and management, and it can make the difference in most cases between the failure or success of your project.
Business Plan Essentials Collection - Elements That Investors Look For
The good news is writing a business plan is not a complicated task if you focus on the relevant information. There are just a few rules to follow to get the best out of your ideas and put them on paper.
Whether your business plan is intended for financial institutions or for yourself, the state of mind in which you write is a simple yet powerful factor that will make your business plan more effective, efficient and might even change your entrepreneurial goals.
Don’t be mislead, the tangible content written in the business plan is of the utmost importance and serves as a formal document that supports the core of your idea. Strong ideas need convincing representation and every serious business plan has the following sections:
– An executive summary: This section is of paramount importance, as readers pay the most attention to it out of all the parts of a business plan. It serves as the backbone of your business plan and should highlight your entrepreneurial goals and objectives. It should summarize the key information you will expand on throughout your business plan and clearly shows what you’re asking for in terms of resources in order to achieve these goals.
– Business and products description: Describing your business and products sets the context in which your company will operate and what products you offer. It’s the perfect place for you to sell your products, so tell your story. Prepare your sales pitch and show your products’ lifecycle, potential development, and innovation.
– Industry and market analysis: Only by perfectly knowing your market and industry will you be able to show a clear path to success. While you should be able to reflect on how the company positions itself in the industry and what market you’re targeting, you should also be convincing the reader you know exactly where you’re going with your strategy.
– Competition analysis: The purpose of this section is to show your competitive advantages and key success factors. By analysing the strength and weaknesses of your competitors, you will are able to detail how to exploit their weaknesses and what barriers you will erect to protect yourself.
– Marketing and competitive features: The purpose of this section is to detail your marketing plan and what tools are most effective in reaching your audience and maximizing sales.
– Key management and personnel: This is the operational part of your business plan. Tell the reader how you plan on structuring your organization and how it will evolve over the years. Provide a background of the key managers and how their experience is relevant to the success of the business.
– Financials: Financials are the defining segment of your argumentation. It is the tangible conclusion and summarization of your previously explained strategies and plans. It provides the valorized link between all the parts of the business plan and reflects their dynamics in a coherent manner. It should include a break-even analysis, a 5-year sales forecast, a 5-year profit and loss, and a 5-year balance sheet.
Now that you have the basic knowledge of how to write a good business plan, let us explain how to make it a thriving one.
Most business plan writers mechanically elaborate their writing in respect to the instructions they’ve been given. They don’t allow themselves to think critically as they’re afraid of stepping out of the boundaries that have been set. This, in the end, will produce a professional but sterile business plan… and the difference lies in this critical thinking. The purpose of this document is to make the vision you have in your mind a reality while knowing the business plan will likely be obsolete as soon as you implement changes to meet the market’s needs, thus changing the business model. A business plan, like all plans, is subject to change. It’s knowing this paradox throughout your writing that will give it an edge. Write the future history of your company and keep in mind this history might just be fiction, as variables will evolve, and your company along with them. Ultimately, excellent business plans create excellent businesses.