Do I need a business plan?
You will probably have heard the phrase “Fail to plan…plan to fail”. This key area of a business is often overlooked by business owners. No matter what stage your business, you need a plan to gauge whether you are heading in the right direction.
For start-up businesses, planning thoroughly before you start the business could save you thousands of pounds and the headache of a failed venture. Planning your business may uncover opportunities which you may not have previously thought of, presenting success and reward if executed well.
IT’S ALL IN THE PLANNING! OTHER COMPANIES WANT YOUR CUSTOMERS!
Equally as important for established businesses, you must set goals, plan ahead and measure your results. The environment in which businesses operate today is constantly changing. Those who fail to plan don’t to recognise threats and opportunities run the risk of unexpected collapse.
OUR TOP 10 TIPS FOR WRITING AN EFFECTIVE BUSINESS PLAN
1. Decide the aims and objectives of your business. Be concise and to the point
2. What will your business provide? What problems will you solve for customers?
3. What is your Unique Selling Point, the reason why customers will choose you?
3. Who are your customers?
4. How much are they willing to spend and how often?
5. Where are your competitors and where do they ‘hang out’?
6. What are the advantages of your product/service over your competitors?
7. What are the threats to your success? Equally what are the opportunities?
8. Write a monthly financial plan
9. Breakdown your sales into number of customers and average value per sale
10. Don’t underestimate costs and expenses- add in a buffer
You can also access professional, expert help from a trusted accountant and business advisor. They will help you see the wood for the trees, keep you on the right path and make sure your goals are realistic and achievable.
David Parker is a Chartered Management Accountant who has worked with small businesses since 2007 from his accountancy practice Purple Accounts. Prior to this, he worked with market leading companies in London and the Isle of Man, implementing effective financial planning and analysis systems. If you would like to discuss your business plans with David, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07745 785515 for a free no obligation chat.