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And be sure the plan realistically identifies opportunities and obstacles, with a strong focus on the latter.Below are three areas of a business plan that need special attention.Your business plan should provide details of how you are going to develop your business, when you are going to do it, who's going to play a part and how you will manage the finances.
A business plan can take many forms, depending on the venture.
A four-person management consulting firm may produce a leaner plan focused on service expertise and industry experience compared to a 20-employee widget maker, which would also have to describe products, manufacturing techniques, competitive forces and marketing needs, among other details.
If you have partners, outline which areas of responsibility each of you will undertake as well as the experience that each of you brings to the venture.
In doing this, you’ll uncover any weaknesses in yourself or your management team.
It does not matter how good your product or service is unless you can successfully interact with your customer it is unlikely that the business will get anywhere.
You should also carefully consider the reasons why a business plan is necessary.
Handling them wisely will strengthen your business from the outset and uncover issues that could cause problems down the road.
The Management Team “One of my mentors used to tell his business school classes there are three things we invest in: Team, team and team,” says Eric Chin, general partner at Crosslink Capital in San Francisco, an investor in early-stage businesses.
The reason is simple: A business plan enables you to address on paper many of the variables that make small businesses fail. Since lenders and investors are holding their purse strings tight these days, an inadequate business plan could keep you from getting the financing you need.
It’s best to complete your business plan before you devote much time and money to your new business, and then revisit it as your enterprise grows, adjusting it as necessary.