A business plan is vital to the success of your business however a business plan alone is no guarantee of success in business.
Failing to plan will ensure your business will ultimately fail.
This short video Case Study from Business Queensland http://www.business.qld.gov.au/ gives some insight into the value of having a business plan.
Business Plan Templates
There are many business plan templates readily available off the internet. Make your choice carefully. Many templates are free as often that is exactly what they are worth!
Many are provided by banks and other organisations as purely as marketing tools. They are not what they use to write a business plan for their own business.
The best financial plan templates are dynamic. That is each of the tables of financial information are linked to the other tables. Change any number and it follows it will change other numbers in the modeling tool, which is exactly as it should be.
We use premium business planning tools that are paid for and produce a substantially better outcome.
Much of what we see presented as a business plan using free resources is not adequate and is far removed from what a professional accountant or business advisor would prepare.
This raises an important question “who is best placed to prepare a proper business plan’?
Who is best placed to write a business plan?
There are two clear options:
- Business Advisor and Accountant; more expensive with a high level of expertise and held in high regard by banks and lenders
- You, the business owner or intending owner; low-cost with low or no professional expertise but often great hands-on and industry experience
Our preferred options is to use a joint efforts of professional advice and the owner. The input of both is invaluable. One without the other is a compromise
The best person to write a business plan is you, with expert advice from one of our Business Advisors. The process should challenge your thinking and your strategy to ensure that your business is robust enough to stand up to the rough and tumble of doing business in the real world.
A business plan can be written to serve a number of purposes including applying for finance or seeking investors, seeking appointment as an agent or alliance partner or joint venturing or most importantly as a business management tool guide your business to a successful outcome.
Your business plan should be written specifically to suit the target audience.
In the first instance the business plan should be written to demonstrate to the reader that you have a genuine business opportunity, the strategy, the expertise, experience and financial resources to produce a profitable financial outcome within a defined time line.
Recommended course of action
We see many business plans that have been written with no regard to the end result; the target outcome.
Often this is reflected in the complete disconnection between the business plan and the financial plan. The financial plan is an after thought to the business plan which should never be the case.
Create the financial plan first and then write the business plan to demonstrate how you will produce the result – this approach will save a great deal of time and angst.
Action steps to take today…