You’re doing great. Your business is growing, you love what you do, but you’re starting to get bogged down with the daily admin. You’ve got people to pay, invoices to send out, staff to support, and customers to keep happy.
You started this business for a reason. Your hopes, dreams and goals are of the utmost importance. They’re the spark that keeps your business exciting, and somehow they’ve got a little lost in the minutia of being a business owner.
The best way to stay true to the hopes you had for your business is to create a solid business plan.
A business plan helps you build a business that supports your dream.
Let your dreams lead you by building them into your core plan. That’s what your business plan is really. It’s a documentation of your goals, and a plan for how you will work towards them.
A business plan can help you at any point in your business journey – not just when you start up. It encourages you to lean into the reason you started the business and evaluate (or re-evaluate) how you’re going to reach your dreams.
A business plan keeps you accountable.
A business plan is a driving force, steering you when you’re uncertain. You can literally print it out and regularly refer back to it.
Having a solid business plan keeps you accountable to those goals you set out. We all get overwhelmed or distracted by new opportunities that land before us, but not every opportunity is a good one. A business plan acts as a check to make sure you chase the right ones. It helps you easily get back on track when you get overwhelmed with all the practicalities. It reminds you of where you’re headed and what it’s all for, so that you can recenter.
“78% achieve more when goals are written down”
~ Steve Briginshaw
Our client, Jamien, who runs an animation studio commented that he keeps the 1 page plan pinned by his desk and refers to it all the time as they make decisions on the business and update their forecasts.
A business plan helps you collaborate.
Your business plan might not only be for you. You might have a business partner you work well with but it’s hard to find time to connect. Our client Tom owns an agency based in London that specialises in communication NGOs, think tanks and universities. Tom and Aidan had been running their agency for 3 years and whilst they had frequent conversations about the business they were always squeezed in around other things, work itself, sales etc.
They used Raedan’s business plan workshop to bring themselves together for intentional work on a business plan. Starting with a four hour face to face sessions, they focused on their business, their purpose, mission, values, KPIs, opportunities and threats.
At the end of the workshop, Tom and Aidan agreed how valuable it was to have time aside to talk about the things that normally never get prioritised but were actually so important to the business and themselves. Talking about things as simple as what they each would get paid! They now have clear 90-day and 12-month goals.
They also found huge value in hearing each other speak and seeing that they were both still aligned in the goals of the business they had started 3 years ago – something they had each harboured some concerns about – elephant in the room if you like.
Tom had the following to say – “For me the key win from the session was focus. It helped us have a much clearer picture of what we want to achieve over the next 12 months, and what we each wanted from the business in the short- and the long-term. We have had these conversations, but having Raedan there to guide the conversation and help us prioritise was the kicker. We’ll be doing it again in 12 month’s time for sure.”
It’s not as hard as it sounds to write a business plan.
We know a lot of this may feel easier said than done. Hey, just map out all of your plans, and decide how to achieve them. Sorted.
You absolutely can do this by yourself, or with your business partner. And do remember that your business plan can change if circumstances change, and may well be updated as your goals develop too. Our template below will help you walk through the process.
That being said, if you want help to organise all your thoughts and get them documented, we have a dedicated 4 hour workshop to help you map out your goals and objectives, and get them into a plan. Sign up for the workshop here, or download our example business plan.