|Posted by Michael Sausman on January 21, 2011 at 7:14 PM|
Business advisors spend much of our lives trying to convince business owners and managers to have written strategic or business plans, but perhaps we should be asking why so many of them don’t.
Common reasons I’m given are: “Its ok, its all in my head”, “I don’t need a bank loan so I don’t need a plan”, “I don’t want my competitors to find out what I’m trying to do”, “I don’t have the time to plan” and “I’ll get round to it one day” – recognise any of those?
All of my clients tell me that not only do they have a clearer picture of their business with their plan but also that the process has helped them to develop new ideas, see new opportunities and pitfalls, allowed them to step back and look at the business, given them a feeling of being more in control and helped them explain their business to others. And all are making more profit, have more free time or have sold their businesses.
Keep it Simple
The plan does not have to be long and complex (especially for a small business) and you can do it yourself. There are lots of templates available on the web and most of them include everything (and more) that a business needs to plan. It may only be 2 pages or could be 30 pages – but it needs to be clear and meaningful - and remember its YOUR plan for YOUR business.
Don’t stress about getting it 100% perfect – accept that you will need to review it regularly (every 3 months) and you can add to it as you grow and develop your business so that the plan is always up to date.
Of course you can pay someone like me to help you write it, (click here for our Business Planning page) review it or for general ongoing advice, but the point is to start your plan today; and if you already have one then re-examine it at least every 3 months.