Do you have an idea of product or service you would like to provide to your community, but have no clue about the steps required in order to make it a reality? Well, then this is the perfect article for you.
We will guide you through the elaboration of a business plan, its essential components and most importantly, we will help you to understand how to take it all out of the paper.
Firstly, what is a business plan?
A business plan is a written document which explains in details how a business will operate. It gives the reader a 360º overview about the business idea, the market, the rate at which the company is expected to grow and smart exit strategies.
“Failing to plan is planning to fail.” – Alan Lakein
When writing a business plan, you should be aware of the following components:
The executive summary is a section which usually comes after the title page of the business plan. It is a personal written overview in which you should tell the reader your main objectives from the desired business, and the reasons why you think it is needed.
In this section you should give more details about the current state of your industry of operation, and future projections.
You should provide also a precise information about the business; its mission; how you intend to generate revenue; its key employees and the aspects which make your business unique.
Marketing and sales strategy
This involves a deep analysis of your target customers, in which you find out about what their needs are; what they are looking for; the reason why they are looking for that specific product or service; and most importantly, you lay out the best way of delivering it to them.
An important fact to remember in business is that; ignoring your competitors, will not prevent them from destroying your company.
“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.” – Pablo Picasso
You should know everything you possible can about the main companies who do the same job as you. Be aware of who their customers are; why do they buy from them; their strengths and weakness; and all the necessary details which will ensure that your adversaries do not affect the rates of growth and expansion of your business.
Design and development plan
In this section you should describe the design of your product or service, your methods of manufacturing and delivering it to your public, the differentials of your product or service, and outline as well the ways in which your offer will meet the needs of your potential customers.
Operations and management plan
The operations and management plan should have detailed information about your setup, this includes; information about the structure of your management team and its hierarchy; the tasks assigned to each employee, the facilities you will need, and the requirements needed for the normal functioning of your company.
This is a very crucial aspect of your business plan, as it helps the reader to understand all the costs related to the implementation of your ideas, the ways in which the business will generate income, in order to maintain its normal operations and a positive cash flow balance.
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