MBA students are often asked to write a solid business plan in any one of their semesters. Your professors want you to be familiar with writing a proper business plan since this task is quite common out there in the corporate world. Once you know the basics of writing the document right from your academic level, it will be easier for you to do the same in the corporate sector. Thus, let’s check out the steps for how to write a business plan quickly.
What is a business plan?
Before you learn how to write a business plan,you must know the business plan definition. A business plan outlines the goals of your business. It also shows in details how you plan to achieve those goals.
You need to determine the following related to a business in the plan.
- Ongoing viability
The definition of a business plan is simple. However, you need to understand the purpose of the business plan and come up with it, when required. Read on to see the right time to craft a business plan.
When to create a business plan & what is it for?
Your professors may ask you about the right time to write a business plan. In that case, you can discuss the following points.
- Testing the feasibility of a business idea
Business people may have tons of business ideas almost daily. A business plan helps them decide which approach will work out in the end.
- Guiding a new business in the right direction
A business plan is often created to guide a new business or a start-up in the right direction. It’s a huge help to entrepreneurs.
- Securing the funding in a business
Investment is one of the most important aspects of any business. The business plan will help companies to invest or ask for funding wisely.
- Attracting a good number of investors
Having a proper business plan suggests that the business consists of a strong vision and mission. It attracts a good amount of investors.
These are the most common scenarios when one needs to create a business plan. If you have been asked to discuss the fight time to write a business plan, elaborate on the reasons mentioned above.
How to write a business plan step by step?
Creating a business plan is easy if you are familiar with the right steps. Therefore, here is a list of steps for you to write a marketing and business plan stress-free. An academic business plan consists of the following.
This is where you will provide a simple snapshot of the business. Include some background information related to the business.
- Overview of mission and context analysis
Examine the current goal of the company and suggest how the proposed goal or mission will contribute to the organisation’s success.
Discuss the new mission or goals of the business in this section. Show how those goals can be achieved without asking for extra funds.
Write about the services or products that the company intends to deliver. Explain how the products are better than other companies in the same niche.
This is where you will explain the right sales and marketing strategies required to promote the products. Describe how the products or services will benefit the customers.
If your professor wants you to ask for funding in the plan, outline your finding requirements in the document. Clearly explain how much finding the company needs over the next five years. Also, explain what the company will use the money for.
This section persuades the investor that the company is reliable enough for investments. You may need to include balance sheets, cash flow statements and income statements to make this part of your document quite compelling.
Do not forget to cite the sources in your paper as and when required. Follow the style as instructed by your professor. Get help from your professors if you find it hard to cite the paper.
Implement these steps and you will be able to write a business plan in no time. In case of a time-crunch, it is better if you get help online.
Business Plan Executive Summary Samples
[Tag Line – A short and attractive tagline to describe your proposition]
Number of Employees
Use of Fund
Current Monthly Burn Rate
Current Monthly Revenue
[Provide a short description of the investment opportunity you are presenting in the form of vision and/or mission statement]
[Describe your target buyer’s need or desire. Avoid technical terms and only focus on explaining the opportunity. Include the profile of target customers]
[Describe how you want to address the need or opportunity. Concentrate on essential value proposition and customer benefits]
POTENTIAL RETURN/REVENUE MODEL
[Explain the potential profit from this project and provide supporting data such as market size, market share and growth rate. Describe your revenue model and expected profit margin]
[Describe your current & future competitors and any other external risks that the investment may be exposed to. Demonstrate knowledge of the landscape and your competitive advantage]
EXECUTION PLAN/GO TO MARKET STRATEGY
[Describe how you plan to pull it off. Summarize your sales, marketing, development and partnership plans. Highlight milestones achieved to date and planned for future]
[Describe the financial resources that you have or need to make the plan successful. Include available and projected cash, burn rate and revenue. Explain how far will the investment take you and how do you plan to continue from there]
THE TEAM/RELEVANT EXPERIENCE
[Introduce your team and emphasize on what YOU bring to the table. Explain the role and responsibility of each member and any other human resources that you would need to execute the plan.]
The executive summary can be up to 350 words. The executive summary should act as a strong opening statement to your business plan and should be able to stand alone as a document independent of the rest of the plan. You should attempt to intrigue your audience to learn more about your business with this section.
Explain the basic elements of the proposed business. Below are some things you may want to include (but are not limited to):
- Company Overview: a. What does the company do? b. Who are your target customers?
- Product(s) a. What doesyour product do? b. How is it differentiated? c. Include information on ownership of the technology
- Competitive Analysis: What is the current competitive landscape?
- Business Strategy / Model: a. How are you going to make money? b. What are the benefits for payers? Venture capitalists? Etc. c. Who is going to give you money so that you can achieve your strategy?
- R&D Pathand Major Milestones a. R&D, Regulatory, Commercialization b. Exit plan
- Operations: a. Marketing, and Sales b. Manufacturing c. Other
- Financial Summary a. Include your projected positivecash flowvs. your burn rate b. Include the financial value proposition to prospective investors and payers
What is the purpose of a business plan?
There are three main purposes for writing a business plan. Talk to your professors if you are unable to determine the purpose of the plan that you have been asked to write.
- Keeps the company on the right track
A business plan is like the blueprint of a company. It shows the ultimate goals of a business and how one can reach those goals within a specific time period.
- Highlight the skills needed by the company
The business plan will also show how you can move the company in the right direction. You will also understand whether or not you will need to hire new talents to boost the company’s growth.
- Maps the company’s growth
The business plan will help you measure your company’s growth. It will show what your company goals were and how far you’ve been able to achieve those.
These are the main purposes of a business plan. Try to understand the purpose of the business plan that you’ve been asked to write. Then you can work on the plan accordingly.
How can you grow your business through it?
MBA or business school students often wonder if a business plan really works. Here’s how you can certainly grow your business through a perfect business plan.
- Identify your ideal customer
The business plan will help you identify who your ideal customers are. You can bring forth the right products for them and draw their attention to your services in no time.
- Highlight the USP of your company
You can also highlight the unique selling proposition of your company. Show how the USP of your company makes you distinct than the rest.
- Choose the perfect marketing mediums
The business plan will help you choose the right marketing medium for your business. From traditional to digital marketing, you can choose from a wide range of lead generation strategies to pick the right medium for your business.
The best thing about a business plan outline is that you can clearly see the budget you may need in this venture. Thus, you can plan your expenses accordingly.
This is how you can grow your company through a business plan. Hopefully, now you have understood how important a business plan is out there in the corporate sector. Thus, make sure you practise writing the plan in your colleges or universities.
Online Tools to help you create a business plan
- SBA’s Build Your Business Plan Tool– This tool helps you to save your business progress records and revisit whenever required.
- Enloop– You just need to fill in details and the tool will automatically write the plan
- Liveplan– It simplifies business planning and helps in forecasting, budgeting and tracking progress
- Rocket Lawyer– This helps you to create a customised business plan by following a sequential interview process
- Strat Pad– Small Businesses can use this planning software to create business plans within few hours or days.
Check out this business plan sample
Here is a sample of a business plan to help you understand the overall structure and format of this document.
Sample topic: Business plan of Oporto Restaurant
Have a look at the samples before you start writing the business plan. It will help you write the paper accurately. Also, get help from your professors or friends if you get stuck while working on the business plan. Good Luck!
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