Small Business BC is excited to introduce our new Business Plan Advisor, Yvonne Bayer-Cheung. She is now available to assist with our Business Plan Advisory service and our Business Growth and Resiliency services.
Yvonne is a passionate entrepreneur, business strategist and advisor with a diverse range of experience in management and leadership, marketing, operations and financial lending. She was most recently a Business Advisor at the Women’s Enterprise Centre of Manitoba, contributing to their community for three years.
The entrepreneurial journey is one Yvonne is inherently familiar with, possessing a track record of launching and running several successful businesses.
“I am an entrepreneur at heart, and I understand the challenges that many entrepreneurs face. I have opened and managed several family-owned Mongolian stir fry restaurants as well as the development of a pizza franchise restaurant brand with over a dozen restaurants in Manitoba and Ontario.
“My other passion job or side hustle that turned into a full-time gig is Yvonne’s Fitness where I’ve taught virtual and in-person Zumba and Yoga classes for the past 10 years. I started off as a solopreneur and now have a small team of instructors and virtual assistants to continue to carry out my vision for the community both in-person and online.”
Creating a Successful Business Plan
For several years, Yvonne has advised new entrepreneurs on how to create and refine their business plans. In her view, the more time an entrepreneur is willing to put into their plan, the greater chance of success they’ll have.
“At the end of the day, it is really all about the time you put in and the process in figuring out whether your business idea is feasible and viable. Taking the time to research, analyze & evaluate your business plan can help you create a strategy on how best to proceed and help you avoid costly mistakes.
“It’s a good idea to make your mistakes on paper rather than spending your hard-earned money or borrowing money and taking on debt on an idea that you did not properly plan for. You also have the flexibility to change your business plan while it is in paper form. While you are writing and analyzing your business plan, you may decide to switch gears or change some of your key decisions and strategic directions.
“Your plan will summarize your research, analysis and validate your products or services and demonstrate the “proof of concept” to your reader. A well thought out business plan will help you determine all the required resources (both human and financial) that you will need to make your business successful and profitable in the short and long-term.”
Creating a business plan is the first big obstacle many entrepreneurs face. It involves learning new skills, thinking about challenges in a different way, or finding answers to difficult questions. It’s easy to get ‘stuck’ at this point in the process, but Yvonne has some pointers to share.
“There are many moving pieces when developing your business plan, with so many components to figure out. Often entrepreneurs are unsure or overwhelmed as to where to begin. For instance, what stage are you at with your plan? What is your objective? Are you still trying to define what it is that you are offering? Is your goal to secure funding? Do you have a marketing strategy and a detailed promotions and advertising plan in place? You must also work in tandem on your financial projections to uncover your true costs and determine a proper pricing strategy.
“Start with a proper business plan and cash flow template, both are available at Small Business BC. If you are looking to secure funding, you can also ask the financial lender if they have a business plan template of choice. You do not have to reinvent the wheel, the SBBC template has all the required sections that you need to have included in your business plan.
“You will need to figure out your sales forecast and cash flow projections. For some, this part can be intimidating, but as a business owner you need to understand how much money is required to start-up your business and how much money will be flowing in (your sales), as well as how much money is going out to operate your business. The cashflow template is an excel spreadsheet that is already formulated and set-up for you to plug and play.
“There’s always steep learning at the start and you will invest a lot of time to find all the facts you need, but it will be worth it in the end. By uncovering your true costs for your COGS (cost of goods sold) and your operating expenses (including marketing and promotions costs), you can apply proper pricing and figure out how to maximize your profit and make sure your business is viable.”
Business Plan Services Offered by Yvonne
Interested in working with Yvonne to build or refine your business plan? Whether you’re at the ideas on a napkin phase, or you’re looking to identify areas for growth, learn about the range of business plan services available at SBBC and start creating your roadmap for business success.