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    How to Create a Business Plan and Start Your Own Business

     How to Create a Business Plan and Start Your Own Business


                Businesses are constantly growing, expanding, and changing. How do you stay ahead of the curve? The answer lies in having a solid strategy. A business plan is a blueprint for success. It outlines your goals, objectives, and strategies for achieving them. This guide will help you with everything from defining your vision to selecting your target market and market share to developing your marketing strategy and budgeting methods creating an effective implementation plan that builds upon your initial successes to creating an ongoing strategy that will carry your business forward in the future.

    7 Reasons to Write a Business Plan

    Create a Business Plan

                A business plan should be created with every new or existing business venture. A business plan takes time to complete and is often perceived as an administrative burden. However, if you are serious about your idea, there is no better way to gain clarity about what needs to be done, when it should be done, and how it will get done. It provides you with focus during times of confusion or change. The process of writing down objectives in one place also enables you to challenge yourself to improve your business on a day-to-day basis by forcing yourself to understand where you want it to go in three months, six months, nine months, and so on—and how you intend to get there.

    5 Things Every Business Owner Should Know About Writing a Business Plan

                For entrepreneurs, writing a business plan can seem like an unnecessary hurdle, but it is important to remember that your business plan is an opportunity to create clarity around your goals. Your plan should also provide you with a roadmap for future growth. Most importantly, it forces you to take time out of day-to-day operations to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses as well as think critically about what makes your company unique. In short, your business plan provides you with an honest assessment of where you are and helps guide you towards success.

    2 Types of Business Plans

    Create a Business Plan

                The first step in writing a business plan is figuring out which type you’ll need to write. There are two main types of plans: A mission statement/company overview and an executive summary. An executive summary is usually geared toward someone outside your company, such as an investor or an angel investor. It explains who you are, what you do, what makes your business different from others in your industry, how it’s performing financially, any risks that could negatively impact its performance (like legal risks), what it plans to do next (strategic planning), and anything else that might be important for someone deciding whether or not to invest in your business.

    Executive Summary

                A business plan is your company’s roadmap. A simple, straightforward summary of your business that highlights key points and outlines important information such as goals, strategies, financial requirements, target market analysis, and timeline. Keep it short - 2 pages tops! Your executive summary can be used to attract investors or partners. Ensure you include: Mission Statement – The purpose of your company e.g. profit for shareholders or expansion for franchising (The reason you exist!) Problem/Opportunity Analysis – How does your product solve customers’ problems/ meet their needs? Target Market/Customer Profile: Who is going to buy from you and why? What makes them different from other customers?

    Vision Statement

    Create a Business Plan

                Before you even begin to develop your business plan, it’s important to have an idea of what your overall vision is. What do you want your company to look like? Your vision statement should be broad enough to cover all aspects of your business, but specific enough so that it can act as a guiding force throughout its creation. A great way to start creating your vision statement is by writing down what you would ideally like your company to become, then describing why that would be beneficial for everyone involved.

    Mission Statement

                A company’s mission statement is one of its most important documents. The purpose of a mission statement is to clearly state what your business is, what it stands for, and how it will operate going forward. A good mission statement serves as an inspirational reminder of why you are doing what you are doing. There are three common types of mission statements: value-driven, customer-focused, and vision-driven. You should create a unique mission statement for your business that draws from all three types but fits with your own values.

    Goals and Objectives

                A business plan is an exercise in goal-setting. When you're writing a business plan, one of your first steps should be to clearly define what your goals are, how you intend to achieve them, and how you measure success. A well-defined goal gives direction to your efforts, helps motivate others (both inside and outside of your organization), serves as an important touchstone, and can help keep you focused. The more specific you are about your goal—and when it will be achieved—the better equipped you will be to make sure that it happens on time. All things being equal, most people would rather get somewhere quickly than make sure they’re going in exactly the right direction; setting realistic deadlines for goals keeps everyone motivated over time.

    Strategies for Success

                A good business plan starts with understanding your long-term goals, where you’re headed, and why. To ensure that your strategy is sound, start by creating an outline for your business plan—then fill in each section one at a time. By writing out your goals, you can figure out what strategies are likely to help you achieve them. Next up: Define how your company fits into its niche (or niches). What will make it stand out from competitors and increase revenue streams? A well-thought-out business plan will keep both short-term goals (within 1 year) and long-term goals (5 years or more) in mind at all times—and then show exactly how you’ll reach those milestones.

    SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats)

    Create a Business Plan

                A SWOT analysis is one of your most powerful business tools. In fact, it’s probably among your most important (and overlooked) business planning steps. It can help you figure out which of your ideas are best suited for success and avoid failure before you’ve even invested time or money in them. The first step in creating an effective SWOT analysis is determining what exactly each letter means

    Action Steps

                Are you just starting out, or have you already launched a business? In either case, getting organized and putting together your plan can help you achieve your goals. Below are six simple steps to writing an effective business plan. Follow these tips, set aside some time to think, plan for future growth, and make sure your strategy is top-notch before you go out into that highly competitive world. When it comes to running your own business, the organization is key—and without it, all other efforts will fail!

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