Writing a Business Plan

September 08, 2016


Even if you're not a natural organizer, planning is still a good idea. When I knew that I would be self-employed, I had to write down a plan for how I wanted my business to go. It included things like that the type of projects I would work on, price list for the service, policies and procedures, and even best practices. 

Well, I think a business plan is vital no matter if you're self-employed or if you do work for charity. You need a way to determine if what you're doing is successful. You need a goal in mind and a way to monitor the achievements you want to accomplish.

My career has taken a shift in that I more or less work for a client, but I still keep daily tasks list, a binder with notes for projects, and a calendar. A business plan will be different depending on what you need it for. In my case, I need it to help me stay on top of daily operations and it translates from working for a client to charity work.

Now, if you are going to approach a lender, your business plan will look a lot different than mine. If you are considering beginning a start-up business, I highly recommend you have a plan outlined on paper. It can contain many items but most importantly, the mission and purpose for your business. In other words:
  • Are you product or service-based company?
  • What products and/or services will you provide and how? 
  • What type of clients are you targeting and why? 
  • Will you be a sole proprietor, partnership, or corporation? 
  • How much money will you need to get started and can you prove how you will pay it back? How long will it take to pay if back? 
  • Will you have employees? If so, how many and how much will you pay them?
Many lenders will also want to know if you have a 5 to 10-year plan for how you perceive your business will grow. So, a lot of thought, research, and time is needed. I don't want to get into the specifics of business loans and what not, this post is more less about the importance of having a business plan if you are considering entrepreneurship.

A business plan is also essential if you're starting a non-profit organization. And in this case, your business plan may be in the form of grant writing. Mosttimes for non-profits, a written proposal is also necessary.

In the end, you'll be very happy to have your business plan in writing and if circumstances change, it's easier to go back and make edits.

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For more information on business plans and/or grant writing, you can check out the following resources from my Amazon reading list:

Business Plan

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