Making a good profit business plan may seem like a tedious chore, reminiscent of countless staff meetings, but your business plan is often the most important way for people to learn about your business. Therefore, putting in the time and effort needed to prepare a solid business plan can pay handsome dividends when you are courting investors to provide you with capital. There are three keys to an effective business plan, (1) Create a concise Executive Summary, (2) Present a very thorough and time-tested budget, (3) Don’t give away the house!
Attract Capital and Generate Profit With a Profit Business Plan
Key #1 – Create a concise Executive Summary: Your profit business plan should provide an overview of your business or project. Describe the proposed activities, including a time frame for beginning the project and discuss a growth time-line. Provide details about your management team and their relevant experience. You want to make it clear that your team has worked on successful projects in the past and that they have what it takes to get things done. Now of days it’s a good idea to invest in an educational website that tells your story as well. This way the investor can do a thorough investigation under your direction without you having to be present.
Key #2- Present a very thorough and time-tested budget: While there is always the temptation to make your business opportunity seem better than it actually is, you should restrain any tendencies you might have towards exaggeration or unrealistic optimism. It is a good idea to show a couple of years of operation and hopefully, revenue increase. You may not be there, or even close, but you should be able to clearly lay out that you are headed in the right direction. Professional investors have read dozens or hundreds of profit business plans and will easily detect any attempts at duplicity or pie-in-the-sky projections.
Key #3 – Don’t give away the house: The best way to approach new investors is with a conservative mind-set. Again, the high-end investor will have seen several business plans so you are not going to be to fool them, do don’t. Be realistic in your growth projections, and I have found it wise to surround myself with older and wiser business people to keep me from deceiving myself about the opportunity or the potential. It can be sobering but it can save you form a lot of pain as well.
And finally: There is a lot of flexibility involved in writing a profit business plan. There is no set format that is good for all occasions. Depending on the type of business you are running, the audience that you are aiming for, and the complexity of your activities, you will want to include different types of information. Yet, there are a few simple guidelines that will enhance the readability and clarity of your document. You should include a summary of no more than three paragraphs, so that it is immediately clear what type of business you are proposing to transact. The body of the document should not be longer than 30 pages (Now of days, the shorter, the better). Any important information that is too detailed or technical to be easily readable within the context of your plan should be placed in appendices.
By following these simple guidelines, you should be well on your way to penning a legible, clear, for-profit business plan. You will surely want to put your best foot forward when courting people who can help you take your organization to the next level. By showing potential investors exactly what you are trying to accomplish and why, your business plan will differentiate you from your competitors who have not taken the trouble to create a good business plan. If you need help in this area, I suggest you contact Developing Winners for a free consultation and get started on the road to fulfilling your dream.