Investors and loan providers need to know that you have a solid understanding of the trajectory of your business. You need to prove that there is an attainable and sustainable need for your solution, that you have a strong business strategy, and that your business can be financially stable.
Whether you are in the beginning stages of starting your own business or planning on taking it to the next level, you will need a clear and informative business plan. `What is a business plan?` you may ask. In short, it is a comprehensive guide wherein answers to the questions and problems you will face in each stage of growth are laid out in detail.
With all of this in mind, the question shouldn`t be if you write your plan, but how you draft an effective business plan that will take your company where you want it to go. The ten tips in the chapters below offer guidance and direction in answering such a question.
A business plan is more than a document. It`s a guide that helps you outline and achieve your goals. It`s also a management tool that allows you to analyze results, make strategic decisions, and showcase how your business will operate, and grow. In short, if you`re thinking of starting a business or plan to pitch your business to investors, writing a business plan can improve your chances of success.
There are tons of good outlines available, plus books, blogs. Down below I have some specific resources related to my work; but not now. There is no single best outline to use, but investors will want to know about the market, potential growth, competition, differentiation (or secret sauce) strategy, tactics, key milestones, important assumptions, the management team, and financial projections including use of funds, projected sales, income, balance, and cash flow. Use your common sense to put first things first and organize it all well.
Like anything else in business, a business plan should be judged good or bad not in a vacuum but in its business context with its specific business objective. Most of the online discussion about business plans is focused on business plans related to seeking investment, and I`m going to make the assumption in this answer that you are asking about those.