Updated: Apr 18, 2022
Planning to succeed in business is critical, whether you are starting, growing, maintaining or looking to sell or succeed.
A business plan should be your first part of planning as it documents goals, objectives, market information and financial forecasts, helping to provide direction and keep you on track.
So where do you start?
1. With your Why!
a) Knowing your why ensures authenticity and allows decisions to be aligned to the business plan
2. Must Haves
a) Mission statement – The How and Now
- Describe your purpose, objectives, customers and team.
- Look at what you do including processes and performance targets.
- Clarify your point of difference.
- Capture the essence of your business.
- It can change over time and is usually used for internal purposes
b) Vision statement – Where and When (with a focus on the future)
- Where do you want your business to be when it grows up?
- It should be inspirational, true to your culture, values and why
- It should not change
3. Top tips
a) Each segment should contain your goals, plans & strategy to implement
b) Ensure SMART Outcomes (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant & Time Bound)
c) Keep it concise – limit to top 5 where possible
d) Goals should be split between Quick Wins (short term) & Big Bangs (long term)
e) Give it the WOW factor - dot points, graphs & pictures tell a thousand words
f) Consider your audience and tailor to suit (internal v external)
Your business plan should be a live and working document and evolve over time. Don’t be afraid to stand out in the crowd, blow your own trumpet, be bold and different.
Check out our info graphic for key elements that your business plan should include: