I’ve seen over 5 dozen business plans of various companies. Many do a great job of explaining the services or products offered; where they will operate, & why their business will succeed. Here’s what they’re often missing:
1. Accurate Forecasting
I recently viewed a business plan that was $34,000,000 off projections. THIRTY FOUR MILLION! It was a start-up who just 3 years ago believed it was going to crack the champagne & make the Fortune 500 list in less than 37 months. Gain some real perspective & be reasonable. Use logic here not emotion.
2. Tactics To Achieve Forecast
Many business plans are void of the actual tactics necessary to achieve stated financial projections. It seems that many businesses believe if you build it they will come. Not in this new buyer economy where everything is seen as a commodity. You must have defined tactics that include all 4 ways to grow & don’t simply rely on one.
3. Acceptable Marketing Budgets
Peter Drucker, who some believe is the most effective executive to walk the planet believes “the two most important functions of a business are Innovation and Marketing & everything else are costs” I’ve seen so many businesses go away when they’ve invested heavily in technology, cool office space, & build-outs only to be left with nothing in their budgets to actually move the needle in gaining market attention & sales. Marketing & business growth should get the majority of your budget when you’re trying to win in the future. Not overhead.
Instead of writing a business plan that might collect dust or be looked at every 5 years focus on an action plan that you can sink your teeth into. Set daily, monthly, & weekly tactics, benchmarks to measure success, & milestones to adjust to when your activities aren’t going where you expected.
To remedy emotion & overconfidence getting in the way of making a realistic action plan get the assistance of some outside advisors. They won’t allow emotion to overcome reality.
Action plans produce more results than business plans. IF you take action.