How to write a business plan
Don’t wait for Moola to find you, why not go out and make some of your own? Forget sugar daddies and deadbeat boyfriends. You can support you for you. Are you already a beauty stylist to your friends and neighbours in your street? Are you already using your flair for whipping up delicious baked goods or making funky beaded jewellery to earn some extra cash on the side? Then it’s time to consider your business plan.
A business “what”?
A business plan is a written document describing what you want to do as a business and how you plan to build your business.
Business plans help you run a more professional business and better manage your business. It is a reference for people that might want to invest in or partner with your business (i.e. put in money or resources into your business to help it grow).
Break up your business plan into 3 sections:
- Your business idea/ concept: Spell out what your business is all about. Talk about the type of business you run, what you sell, what service you offer and how you intend making your business a success. Complex plans can run into a 100 pages while simpler ones may vary between 15 to 20 pages. You’ve starting out so 10 might be a good number to aim for.
- The market in which you operate: In this section you talk about your customers – i.e. who they are, what they buy, why they buy, where are they located etc.Discuss your competitors by describing how big they are, their customers and how they sell or offer their product or services.Then tell the reader how you plan to compete and even beat your competition. Include points on the uniqueness of your offering, how you intend to keep the costs of running your business to a minimum as well as how you intend to focus and service the needs of one particular customer group rather than the whole lot. You will have to show how your plan will deal with unexpected business “troubles” in the future. This could be anything from customers spending less due to poor economic conditions or new competition to your business.
- You financial condition: This is where your accounting will come in handy. You will need to include financial documents like your income statement (Sales – Costs = Net Profit), balance sheet (a list of what you own, what you owe and what your business is worth), cash flow statement ( details of the cash that comes in and out your business) and a budget (where you plan to spend and make money).
For more tips on writing your business plan, go to: http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/business-plans-for-dummies-cheat-sheet.html
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