A business plan is a formal statement of business goals, reasons they are attainable, and plans for reaching them. It may also contain background information about the organization or team attempting to reach those goals
Business Planning is continuous process that is not limited to start-ups, it is an important element of every successful business.
Benefits of business plan writing for small businesses
So you’ve got a business up and running, you deliver awesome products and services and attract profitable clients, you may ask, why do I need a business plan?
The business environment is continuously changing, customer needs are evolving, new competitors are entering the market and existing ones are changing their strategies, new technologies are affecting how you do business and how your clients are using your products/services.
All these and more can affect your business, and if you don’t react quickly to market changes, you stand the risk of being left behind.
A business plan helps you business to:
- Establish clear short and long term goals
- Assess the current situation realistically
- Anticipate market changes and be proactive
- Identify strategies for growth and capitalize on opportunities
- Refine your product or service offering according to market changes
- Stay aligned with customer needs
Related Article: How to write a Business Plan
Is developing a Business plan for an existing business different than developing one for a start-up?
The process of writing the business plan is the same for both, however, existing businesses have one fundamental advantage, when planning for an existing business, we have the ability to draw upon previous performance results and understand what works and what doesn’t.
When planning for a new business start-up, you rely mostly on research and make educated guesses and forecasts, where in the case of existing businesses, in addition to research, you have a wealth of historic information within the business that you can use to make future decision making.