Creating A Business Plan That Makes Tracks

Great tips to help you write your own roadmap to success in the business world.

Creating a business plan is an important step. Often it
is the step most often missed by new business owners that
don’t want to be bothered with paperwork. However, consider
this: for those entrepreneurs that create a solid business
plan, success in business nearly doubles. With new business
failures so statistically high in the first five years, why
wouldn’t you want to increase your odds of success?

So why does a business plan matter? It’s your road map
to the future. Would you get in a car to go on vacation
without a map to get you to your desired destination? Not
unless you’d gone the route a few times previously, right?

And since this is your first go around with your new business,
it’s wise to create a business plan to increase your odds
for success and give you a definite direction.

A business plan is also used for securing capital from banks,
venture capitalists, investors and the like–none of whom
will give you the time of day unless you’ve done your homework.
If you don’t care about the future of your business, why
should they?

So, as they say, “Plan Your Work and Work Your Plan .” Beginning
the business plan is often the most intimidating part, so
let me help you along. It’s not so difficult and can even
be quite fun. Imagine that? Building your business plan
is a little like building confidence in your future–and that
always feels good.

Let’s start with the elements of a business plan.

1. Executive Summary: This is a quick description of everything
you will be outlining in detail below. A swift summary of
the company, its products, services, and outlook for the
future based on simple statistics.

2. Table Of Contents: Just like a book, the Business Plan
has a Table of Contents for quick perusal.

3. The Company: This is a more in depth outline of the company,
what it does, how it’s organized, it’s goals, direction,
history, tasks, profits, etc.

4. Products and Services: An in depth description of the
product or service. Basically, exactly what your business
will be offering for sale.

5. Production: What is necessary to produce your product
or deliver your service. This includes raw materials.

6. Marketing: A detailed marketing agenda including what
and how you will advertise. You can take this straight from
your marketing plan outlined in the Marketing Section.

7. Competition: A complete evaluation of your competition
and how your business will meet the need in a different or
better manner.

8. Obstacles: What hurdles will your business be met with?
How will these hurdles be overcome?

9. Finances: Cost of the set up of your business as well
as the day-to-day financial needs for overhead and marketing.

10. Milestones: This is the future time line of your business.

These are the basic elements of building your business plan.
Begin by making a rough outline for each section and then
build to a finished product. There are many books that offer
guidance for these important planning steps. When you take
the time to plan your business your business will reward
you with a long future of financial stability. So jump in
and make your future happen today.

Roger Kramer is the owner of AlphaServices. Alpha Services
is designed to assist you whether you are just starting a
business, wanting to fine tune your bottom line, planning
to expand or are in serious trouble with your internal operations
or suppliers. Developing business plans is his specialty; visit the
Business Plan Center at