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As Maria in the Sound of Music famously said, or sung, “Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start.” Any business, regardless of size, should start with a business plan. Now, don’t get me wrong, some business plans can be very detailed, and others more like a loose outline, but either way they still form the basis of the foundations of your business, and why you started it in the first place.
So, what exactly is a business plan? According to Wikipedia, a business plan is a formal written document containing the goals of a business, the methods for attaining those goals, and the time-frame for the achievement of the goals.
Lots of talk about goals there, but goals are important for us to measure our success. Success isn’t only measured in a monetary form, it is also a benchmark for all areas of our business, whether that be job satisfaction, customer satisfaction, or even productivity levels.
Not only are business plans useful within the company they are also required when external help is needed outside the business. A business plan may be required when seeking financial investments or loans for your business, they are even helpful to evaluate priorities within your business and perhaps even when dealing with a new supplier or contractor, like a Virtual Assistant.
How does having a business plan help when working with a Virtual Assistant I hear you ask? Having your goals outlined and a plan of how you are going to achieve them allows for a seamless integration of tasks when working with a VA, like Creative Desk. A VA’s role is to help you achieve your business goals, by supporting you in tasks that you are able to outsource allowing you time to focus on the areas of your business that need you!
Maybe you wrote your business plan when you first started your business, but now, your business and offerings have evolved over time? Updating your business plan is just as important. Reviewing your plan should be diarised yearly – not only to make adjustments, but to also help to keep you focused on what you set out to achieve, to keep you accountable.
Let’s have a look at what you should include in your business plan:
Business Name and Profile
Executive Summary including current position and growth plan
Business Background & Goals
Business Offering (Products or service)
Market Research and Analysis
If you need more detailed help, please refer to this template, created by NAB from their website (https://www.nab.com.au/business/small-business/moments/manage/planning/business-plan-template) business plan template (DOC, 158KB)
In doing your plan, perhaps it has highlighted the need for a little extra support in the way of a Virtual Marketing Assistant, please book a call with us here.