Business plan guide for Canada
What is a business plan?
A business plan is a written document that describes your business, its objectives and strategies, the market you are targeting and your financial forecast. It is important to have a business plan because it helps you set realistic goals, secure external funding, measure your success, clarify operational requirements and establish reasonable financial forecasts.
Preparing your plan will also help you focus on how to operate your new business and give it the best chance for success.
Securing financial assistance to start your new business will be directly related to the strength of your business plan. To be considered a viable candidate to receive funds from a financial institution or investors, you must demonstrate that you understand every aspect of your business and its ability to generate profit.
why do I need one?
A business plan is more than just something to show lenders and investors, it is also necessary to help you plan for the growth and progress of your business. Your business’s success can depend on your plans for the future.
Listed below are examples of questions to ask yourself when writing your business plan:
How will I generate a profit?
How will I run the business if sales are low or if profits are down?
Who is my competition, and how will we coexist?
Who is my target market?
What should be included in a business plan?
Although business plans can vary in length and scope, all successful business plans contain common elements. The following points should be included in any business plan:
Executive summary (business description)
Identifying your business opportunity
Marketing and sales strategy of a business plan
Financial forecasts of a business plan
Other useful documentation
Business Concept Vs Business Plan
Many programs require you to submit a business concept initially and a detailed business plan later on. Do not rush with submitting a business concept since your business plan will be based on this.
The key to success is having a business plan in place. Whether you’re about to launch a start-up or you’ve been in business for years, the direction of your business is guided by your business plan.
To begin the planning process, you’ll need to do some critical analysis; business planning is about realistically forecasting where your business is going.
What do you hope to achieve in business? Your goals are the guideposts of your business, and an essential part of your business plan.
Identify your business goals early in the process.
Apply a timeframe to complete those goals.
If you have employees, assign responsibility for the execution of your goals.
Keep “you” in mind; how will your strengths and weaknesses interplay with your goals?