When you think of a business start-up, first thing you do is create a Business Plan that will serve as a roadmap for your start-up in the early years of business. In general, your business plan should project approximately 2 to 5 years looking forward, the route your business takes to reach annual milestones along with the revenue projection.
Here are the essentials of step by step business plan:
+ Executive Summary
You can write the executive summary last, so that it’s easy for you to highlight the complete plan. This will be read by the most important readers as its name suggests.
Describe your strategy and show how the company will be set up and the initial ownership will be divided between the stakeholders. It has to show start-up cost and initial funding.Describe the products and services you are going to offer. Explain why people will buy these products & services and their benefits. How much it will cost to sell these products and services.
This part should describe market trends, market growth, target market and market demographics. Write about your industry type and its competition and also mention market forecast.
+Organization & Management
Here you provide your company’s organizational structure and the ownership of your company, qualifications of your board of directors (if you have an advisory board). This section is very important to a potential investor or employee.
Explain who does what in your management team and their background and their responsibilities.
+Sales & Marketing
Here you focus on your strategy of sales and marketing. The important part is creating and building customers and ways to retain them. How are you going to reach your customers and what are the ways to distribute your products and services.
If you are seeking funding for your business venture, then include the amount you need now and the amount you want in future. It’s important to show here, how you are going to use the funds you receive, for example capital expenditures, working capital or acquisitions, because this will impress future creditors and also show your ability to payback.
Well, with the start-up, creditors want to see what you expect your company to do in the next five years. For the first year you have to provide monthly or quarterly projections of cash flow statements, forecasted income statements, balance sheets and capital expenditure budgets.
You can include graphs for trend analysis to make a better presentation to the prospects.
The appendix would include:
•Credit history (personal & business)
•Resumes of key managers
•Letters of reference
•Details of market studies
•Relevant magazine articles or book references
•Licenses, permits or patents
•Copies of leases
•List of business consultants, including attorney and accountants.
By: Claudio Lodes
Senior Business Consultant.