.... you'll ignore it anyway!
Every business, especially a fast growing business, needs a business plan that works. But is yours a short, to the point plan to get you to your goal or a plan the size of a doorstop, that you only use as a doorstop?
How many man days, consultants, reams of paper (flipcharts and A4), ink, stress and money did you use to generate your very extensive business plan? And when was the last time you reviewed it? If it's more than a few days since you checked the plan you've already ditched it, and I bet that the reasons are:
1. It's too long
2. It’s full of waffle or business speak
3. It's badly written
4. You just don't understand it
5. You don't know what to do first
But the biggest reason it’s languishing in a drawer is that it doesn't say what or how you are going to achieve the plan.
The problem with a plan is that it is just a plan at a single point in time. But it is the starting point. The nature of business means that the plan will have to change because of internal and/or external influences. So, was that planning time wasted? No, absolutely not. What was probably wasted with the numerous drafts that were completed before you got to the perfect document?
Your goals and objectives that you developed following your market, financial, sales review are valid; you just don't need a 40 page business plan. However, if you are using this plan to raise finance, then you will need more than I am going to suggest here.
So, what do you need?
Everyone in the business can concentrate on reading just one page, so they will understand how their actions contribute to acheiving the business goal. If everyone does their actions to the best of their ability, on budget and on time, then you will achieve your business goals.
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Once this business plan, cash-flow and the action plans are in place it is then much easier to manage the variables, react to change and assess alternatives. An added bonus is that you save lots of paper and ink!
Put your effort into planning and implementing the actions and not into writing War and Peace!
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