Do you have an idea for a product or service? Would you like to start a business? If so you will want to read this article. Here’s the good news: Every product or service ever invented by mankind started as an idea. An intangible thought impulse that was turned into reality through the efforts of one or more people working together in an intelligent and harmonious manner. Behind those successful ideas were organized written plans–business plans that laid the foundation and illustrated the path to success for the business owner and investors who funded the project. Then, those plans coupled with the burning desire of the entrepreneur to see the project through to completion is what helps to make a business succeed. The key words in this paragraph are idea, plans, burning desire.
Launching a business without a written business plan is like having a rowboat that has no oars, no map no sextant or compass for direction. The goal of any business is to succeed right? The ultimate destination is success. But what if you were given the rowboat mentioned a moment ago and told your destination was a specific dock in France? How would you get there? You have no oars, no maps, no compass and no sextant to guide you–would you jump into the rowboat, push away from shore and let the current guide you this way and that with no direction? And if you did, what do you think the probability of the trade winds and currents carrying you across the ocean safely so that you arrived at that specific dock…that specific destination? It won’t happen will it…
It is critical to have a well-written business plan to succeed in business. First, it allows you to think through the details of your business and see the obstacles ahead and minimizes costly mistakes. Most entrepreneurs are big on ideas and small on written plans. Every new business has a level of chaos associated with start up; launch and roll out and having a business plan helps minimize this chaos. Writing a business plan is hard work. And most often you will get out of it what you put into it. Plans are both logical and emotional. First, a plan should be based on logical analysis taking a rational, realistic and hard look at the FACTS associated with the business project. There is no room for guesswork, you want hard cold data, statistics, market trends, buyer behavior, and demographics, and there’s a lot you need to think through. But once you have the facts that support your idea, then you can emotionalize your plans in a manner that will sell your idea to others for their participation or financial investment.
Speaking of financial investment, your ability to find and recruit investors for your business is virtually zero without a well written business plan meeting the minimum guidelines generally anticipated by investors regarding plan structure and content.
Another interesting phenomenon about writing a business plan–it takes that intangible thought impulse you have–the idea–out of your head and turns the intangible” thought impulse into a “tangible” form that can be understood by others. Writing a business plan moves your idea or project one step closer to reality.
80% of new businesses fail within a year or two. Why? For many reasons but primarily because entrepreneurs fail to plan and over estimate sales and underestimate costs. The greatest thing you can do to start your project in the right direction is to write a business plan BEFORE you leap into any business endeavor. There is power in planning and you will find it when you do it.
We have a free business planning EBook called HOW TO WRITE A BUSINESS PLAN THAT WORKS located at our site in the freebie section, which you can download at your convenience. It is the most powerful business planning tool I have ever seen and I have over 20 years helping and consulting small businesses. I STRONGLY suggest you take advantage of this opportunity and get your copy today. Another Ezine Article Exclusive!
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James W. Hart, IV
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