Do You Really Need a Business Plan?

Every entrepreneur knows exactly what type of business he/she wants to open, the ideal location and the clients desired.  However, many people mistakenly believe that simply having a general business idea in their minds is as effective as writing an official business plan. In reality, writing a detailed business plan is essential to starting a business on the right path.

Why do I need a business plan?

Ben Franklin QuoteIt may seem counterintuitive to spend precious time and effort writing a document that requires so much research instead of just jumping in with drive and enthusiasm to start a new business. Nevertheless, doing something as risky as starting a business without a plan is not wise, especially when new ventures are more likely to fail than they are to succeed. If anything else, remember this: “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail” – Benjamin Franklin.

Although the success of a new business does not solely rely on writing a business plan, it definitely helps. Specifically, the process of writing a business plan allows a small business owner to critically examine ideas and assumptions, gain a better understanding of the market, define target audiences and determine the feasibility of a financial strategy, among other things. In the end, a good business plan will help any entrepreneur make well-informed short- and long-term decisions and be fully prepare for meetings with loan officers and investors.

What’s in a plan?

If you've tried researching business plans, you've probably learned that a universal template does not exist. Business plans vary by length and content, but there are fundamental elements that should be included.

At a minimum, a business plan includes an executive summary, product and service description, market analysis, marketing plan, company structure, and finance section. These sections will include information about:

  • The benefit of your products and services
  • Your target market
  • Your competitors
  • Projected costs and revenue  

Are you convinced?

There's really no question that taking the time to write a detailed and comprehensive business plan is time well spent when starting a small business. Keep in mind that writing a business plan will most likely be the easiest step in your entrepreneurial journey, so take time, make sure the plan works, and don’t lose sight of your entrepreneurial goal. BizLaunch is always available to assist with constructing a plan and helping to reach those goals. 

Topic: BizLaunch
 
Copyright © 2019 Arlington Economic Development