The 7 Steps to Business Planning Success

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As a Business Planning Advisor, I meet with lots of entrepreneurs full of ideas and energy. They’re always excited to share their dreams and vision for their business. But when I dig a bit deeper and ask questions about how they’ll accomplish their goals, I often hear responses like, “I have it all worked out in my mind, “I’m not sure how I’ll do that,” “I still need to think more about that,” and, “I didn’t consider that.”

Unfortunately, not all challenges can be resolved on the go. There are many actions entrepreneurs need to take to actually take their great idea to the next level, such as reflecting, evaluating and writing their plans, to ensure their business’ success!

Taking the time to think, analyse and write down your business plan is not only important for the business planning phase – it’s also vital for reflecting and learning during the start-up and growth journey. It will also help you develop your business along the way, from streamlining your operations, getting new clients and assessing your finances, among other great benefits.

Here are seven business plan tips to achieve business planning success, achieve your goals and make money.

1. Focus, Focus, Focus

Chances are, if you’re just starting off, you have dozens of great ideas about your business, from marketing campaigns to operations. But the most important thing to do when you’re first writing a business plan is to focus!

Take your time when you’re writing your business plan. Avoid distractions, find a quiet place and pay attention to the task at hand. When you’re ready, write down all your ideas on paper so that they’re all right in front of you.

Writing everything down in a focused way will allow you to run through all your great ideas in an organized and purposeful manner, which will help you move forwards on to the next step.

  • Write down all your ideas.
  • Sort your ideas into the business plan sections, such as operations, marketing and finance.

2. Evaluate Your Ideas

Take the time to analyze and review the great ideas that you’ve written down, and then place them in order of most important to least important for starting your business off right. It will help you identify the resources your ideas will require and the time it’ll take to implement them.  It will also help you realize how much you can do at once.

  • Prioritize which ideas are most important for your business’ launch and success.
  • Outline the resources and time your ideas need to become a reality.
  • Double check to make sure that each part of your business plan looks viable and is consistent

3. Go for It

Being able to prioritize your ideas and plan out their needs will help you to define and set firm goals in your business plan. Make sure that your goals are achievable, measurable and timely, too.

Having goals firmly written down will focus your actions and give you direction. It takes a little effort, but it’s worth it – more certainty and less doubt will make you a more confident entrepreneur.

Now that you have your goals, it’s time to take action. Take your business plan, get the resources you need and go for it with your business!

  • Write down realistic business goals for each section of your business plan.
  • Write down all the steps you need to achieve your goals
  • Go ahead and get started!

4. Review

Great job! Now take the time to go back and review the results of your plans. Compare the achievements with your goals.

  • Compare your results to your goals.
  • Reflect on your end results

5. Learn

Did you achieve what you planned? If not, what did you learn from it?  Were there any unexpected results?

  • Reflect and learn from your experience
  • write down all your thoughts and discoveries. Be honest and factual. There’s no right or wrong answer.

6. Celebrate Success!

This is the best step of any business, and one that we usually forget to do. Celebrate every one of your successes, whether it was learning something new or that you’ve moving towards your exciting business goals. Success comes in many forms.

  • Remember that learning in itself is a success
  • Don’t forget to write yourself a celebratory note – you’re one step closer to achieving your business dream!

7. Rewrite, Redo, Repeat

Take what you’ve learned, and then write your new goals down, make a plan and move forward.

  • Change your business plan according to the experiences you’ve gained.
  • Repeat this business process until you’re satisfied with your business’ results.

Good Luck – You Can Do It!

Remember, starting a business isn’t easy, so putting aside a little time to build a solid business plan will ensure you launch and manage your new business in the best way possible.

If you have more questions or would like more information on how to write a business plan that works for you, reach out to me, Laura Aveledo, by booking an appointment through our Business Plan Advisor service here.

And are you taking advantage of Small Business BC’s wide selection of seminars for entrepreneurs and small to medium-sized business owners? Space is limited, so don’t miss your chance to register today.

Get Started on your business plan by downloading Small Business BC’s Business Plan Template and Cashflow Forecasting Tool.

Download Now