But it does not just take self-belief to make a business materialize. You need to be affirmed of it! That affirmation can only be concrete if you pen your thoughts of your ideal business down. In other words, you would need a business plan.
The business plan marks the beginning of your quest to grabbing the opportunity to be your own boss, but the business plan would not be a business plan without your aptitude in creating it. Remember, this business plan will serve as your guardian during your reign as the business owner.
So to those who have had an aspiration to establish a business of your own, get your pen and paper, and take down these ten steps to writing up an idyllic business plan:
1. Outline your long-term goals before plummeting into the short-term ones. If you were to hurriedly work on the short-term goals without analyzing what you can envision in your business, you may see yourself being wedged halfway through, not knowing where you want to lead your business. So the long-term goals should come first! A brief summary of those goals would do fine.
2. Prepare your budget realistically. You may have drafted your business goals and strategies, but remember, that is a plan. The reality has yet to arrive. So in budget setting, you would need to think of what reality may have to offer for your business, and use it as your basis for budgeting. Before doing so, do research on the industry, which is dependant on your business nature, as well as your targeted customers, demographics, the opportunities and threats, and even economical status of that market.
3. Make the extra effort to gather information from your targeted customers. This can be done by methods like conducting surveys or forming focus groups. The amount of success in your business depends primarily on your customers! So seize the opportunity to find out more about them.
4. Place priority on getting to know your competitors. They are actually your gateway to finding the answers to your queries about how you can make your business prosper. They indirectly can give you an idea of the dos and don’ts of your business that you should notify yourself of.
5. Pen down the possible risks of venturing in your business. Preparing a business plan does not indicate that your business will be risk-free. You should list down the probable negative situations that can transpire in your business and ways to tackle them such that you will not bound to be at a loss.
6. Prepare the plan with an opened mind. Collect feedback and opinions from others about what you had drafted so far. A few heads are better than one after all.
7. Expect the unexpected. You should not be too narrow minded in terms of the business or marketing policies and practices that you wish to implement. Research and analyze the current marketing tools and business practices that can possibly boost your profits and status. And be prepared that while you are managing your business, you may have to amend your plan along the way due to the external factors that are constantly changing over time.
8. Take down the unique selling point of your product or service. Do not blindly let your competitors lead the way! You are in it to compete with them, so you have to draft out something that can make your product or service stand out.
9. The business plan is meant not only for yourself, but also for your prospective subordinates. They have a major part to play in producing positive outcomes for your business. And for that to take place, they need motivation! So do include an outline of monetary rewards, benefits and privileges that can serve as sources of motivation for your subordinates to give their fullest dedication in their tasks.
10. Above all, never thrust aside the importance of the business plan.
As the saying goes, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. So draw your attention to the ‘Magic Ten’ of creating a well-defined business plan.
Good luck to all entrepreneurs in the making! Start writing your plans to start your business with a bang!
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