A 5-step business plan that can increase your chances for success
With the end of 2016 quickly emerging and the dawn of a new year just around the corner, there is no better time than the present to set new business goals and plan for your success. Whether it be adding another location, a new product, or hiring more staff, the best thing you can do to make your goals a reality is to plan for them. Any business plan increases the chances for success. We offer a 5-step business plan to increase your chances in 2017.
The first step for many on the road to successful entrepreneurship is to develop a business plan. A business plan is important because it enables you to take a step back and evaluate your goals. A business plan can also be very helpful if you are seeking investors in your business.
Creating a plan for your success is also a great exercise to do at the end of every year. It enables you to retain an element of control regarding the growth of your business. Planning enables you to proactively run your business and set measurable benchmarks you can track. Here are five suggestions to ensure you are planning for success
1. Benchmark where your business is now
The very first step with any goal is assessing your current situation. Taking a look at your current situation. Some questions to ask include:
- Where is the business currently?
- What are current and future business expenses?
- Is there anything that will need to be rolled over into the current year?
- How well were you in meeting last year’s goals?
- What were the contributing factors to your success?
- Can I copy that success?
- What do I need to do differently?
Knowing what worked and what didn’t and what resources were needed to reach your goal goes along way in increasing the chances for your success.
2. Look around at your environment
Once you have assessed the situation in your business, it is time to assess the situation outside of your business. This includes such things as:
- Your competition
- Your target market
- Your industry
Determine what competitive, economic, and political factors can affect your business and how. Identify the outside risks to your business.
Many of the answers to these questions can be found online from global, national, regional, and local sources. Determine how these factors can affect demand and pricing power for your product or service. Ask yourself if there are any potentially disruptive technologies on the horizon?
Armed with this information, you can identify and prioritize goals for the coming year.
3. Assess your growth targets
Now that you have a picture of the situation both inside and outside of your business, you need to determine what resources are needed to achieve your goals. Growth requires resources. These resources include money, people, machinery, or materials.
In addition to planning for the growth of your business, it is worthwhile to plan for how you are going to pay for everything before you actually need it. This way, you can focus your efforts on running and growing your business rather than seeking out funding.
4. Develop a road-map
Up to this point you should have defined your goals and identified possible funding sources. The next step is to create a road-map for how you will realize your goals. The best way to do this is to break down your goals into small, manageable tasks. You can also assign a timeline for when everything will be done by.
Breaking everything down into smaller, more manageable tasks makes the process easier and more importantly, increases your chances of success.
5. Develop a contingency plan
While research and planning the growth of your business gives the greatest chances of success, it is important to plan for the unexpected as well. Add a cushion in your budget for overages and make sure you have a back up funding source selected just in case something falls through.
Starting off the New Year having a plan for how you will meet your goals greatly increases your chances of success. Fortunately, such a process does not have to be long and tedious. We hope that this information is helpful to you.
Any business plan increases your chances for success. We offer a 5-step business plan to increase your chances of success in 2017.