Do I Really Need a Business Plan for My Business?
- by siteadmin
It is common practice to write a business plan for your company. Nonetheless, there are many successful, profitable businesses that have never possessed one. While it is advisable to have a written business plan before starting any type of venture, you should not feel pressured into writing one if you have no interest or need in doing so. If you do not want to create a formal business plan, there are many other methods available for estimating the viability of an idea . The following list contains some examples of these alternatives:
1) Make an informative spreadsheet
Instead of writing out pages and pages full of words explaining your business model and how much money it will make, use numbers instead! An Excel spreadsheet with basic assumptions costs and market analysis can help give you a brief, yet informative look at how your business will fare. For example, if you want to start a small dog walking service in Brooklyn, all you would have to do is plug in some numbers and it will estimate the expected monthly earnings!
2) Draft a Company Overview
If writing out pages and pages of text seems daunting or time consuming, then try creating a quick three-minute video that showcases what your company does. This approach allows the viewer to learn about your business without having to read through endless paragraphs of information. You can even add comedic value by inserting humorous pictures or graphics into the slideshow; this should make the process feel less like work and more like fun!
3) Write an Executive Summary
Didn’t we just cover this? Yes, but this time, we are talking about writing an executive summary for your business . This type of summary is what you would read in the table of contents if it were a book. It has all the important information that people need to know before they purchase the product. If you cannot fit your entire business model in less than two pages, then remove some unnecessary items from your plan!
4) Get verbal
Sometimes the best way to make a decision is by simply asking someone else what they think. For example, if you are not too sure how much money you will be bringing in after starting your online photo printing store, just ask ten of your friends if they would ever use such a service. Their answers may surprise you!
5) Start small
If you are new to writing business plans, it may be easier for you to begin with a simple “test” plan. By starting off small, you do not have as much risk involved if your idea fails. Perhaps all you need is a business name, color scheme, and a one-page description of what your company does. This way, if your plan ends up being successful, then feel free to expand it into something bigger down the road.
6) Keep things informal
The above-mentioned alternatives are great ways to help determine the feasibility of an idea without having to write out a formal business plan. However, there are some cases where even these approaches are too much work. For example, let’s say that you are only writing a simple business plan to fulfill a school assignment. In this situation, it would probably be best if you kept things informal. Try not to take the assignment too seriously and just have some fun with it. You can even include creative graphics or photos; it will make the process more enjoyable!
7) Get online
This may sound like a joke, but there are many helpful business planning websites that you can use without having to lift a finger. For example, if you want to start an online photo printing company, then simply type “online photo printing template” into Google; it should show some results that you can choose from.
8) Use an alternative format
If none of the above suggestions work for you, perhaps try using an alternative format. Some examples include using flashcards, making a short video presentation, or writing out your ideas on index cards. Though these less traditional formats may be unconventional for business plans, they get their point across in a fun and efficient manner.
9) Use a template If all else fails, you can always use a template. You will have to purchase them from websites such as BizPlanBuilder, but it is well worth the investment! Most of these sites offer their products for free so that you can try out their services before deciding whether or not they are right for you. So what are you waiting for? Stop stressing about business planning and start looking into these alternatives instead!
It is common practice to write a business plan for your company. Nonetheless, there are many successful, profitable businesses that have never possessed one. While it is advisable to have a written business plan before starting any type of venture, you should not feel pressured into writing one if you have no interest or need…