How’s your business plan? Have you looked at it lately? Could you find a copy if I asked? Do you even have one?
- Preparing your plan forces you to actually evaluate your business, and
- having a real-world plan serves as a guide post and reminder of where you are heading.
The problem is that a big, five pound business plan is more of a pain than a benefit. So let’s throw that away, and make a simplified, real world business plan instead.
Section 1: Your Business
Talk about your business. Try answering these questions to a friend. Make note of the questions they ask and the suggestions they make.Try to get all the answers on one page, two at the most.
- Describe your business.
Give a one sentence basic explanation, followed by a one paragraph explanation.
- Tell about the market and competition.
List some existing clients, and a one sentence description of your ideal new clients.
- What makes your business unique or special?
Here are 8 ways to define your niche.
- What are your business goals?
- Why are you the right person to do this?
Section 2: Your Money
You don’t need your accountant for this; I promise.
- Create revenue goals for each line of business or income stream. Start with your available activity, and base your revenue goals on that. In other words, given the amount of time you have to work, how much revenue are you likely to generate? See some examples in How to figure out your revenue goals.
- Review your business goals based on the revenue projections.
Is there enough time in the day or week to get where you want to go? You might need to rethink some goals or plans. When you’re ready to go, the next step is:
- Divide your revenue goals into weekly and daily activities. Who would have thought that working toward your goals every day might work?
- Make an activity reminder you’ll see every day.
This could be an index card, a post it, or a note in your calendar that includes all your daily activity goals. Put your daily activities in Joe’s Goals and reward yourself for each day you take action on them.
- Make big dream reminders to keep you moving.
Make a mind map, a dream board, or get a physical object that reminds you of your big goals and dreams. You need both the daily actions and the big-picture.
So, this has been a great reminder that I need to update my own plans. How about you? Do you have a plan? Do you use it?
- About the Author
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Becky started Small Biz Survival in 2006 to share rural business and community building stories and ideas with other small town business people. She and her husband have a small cattle ranch and are lifelong entrepreneurs. Becky is an international speaker on small business and rural topics.