Business plans are documents that map out a company’s future objectives and the strategies that will be employed to achieve them. Due to the general nature of these documents, many organizations wrongly assume that business plans are exclusively for young companies just starting out.
However, business plans can be an effective tool for organizations that have been operating for years or are simply looking to grow. In fact, companies that approach financial institutions for a loan to expand operations will often be denied if they don’t have a strong business plan in place.
To avoid losing financial support and similar setbacks, drafting a business plan that’s unique to your company is critical and can provide the following:
- A means for starting a business on the right foot. For startups, a business plan can help turn ideas and capital into a viable business model. Specifically, a good business plan can help you secure financing from investors and identify your overall strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.
- Strategies for managing an existing business. For organizations that have been in operation for years, business plans can provide helpful guidance on a number of issues. In general, business plans can help a business communicate its vision to employees and external parties, develop accurate financial forecasts and evaluate company growth.
- Opportunities to grow. When a business is looking to venture into new markets or expand its services, business plans can be particularly helpful. Business plans provide organizations with opportunities to raise capital, create a strategy to manage growth and mitigate expansion risks.
Business plans are not a “one-size-fits-all” endeavour, and organizations will need to be thorough and specific when crafting an effective plan. To view samples and learn some helpful best practices, visit Canada Business Network’s website.
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