Business planning requires that you focus on objectives and financial forecasts. This brings clarity and credibility to your business idea. How will you deal with potential problems? Your budget needs to be at the core of your project and throughout your business journey. Look around at successful businesses and see how they deal with surfacing problems.
The first step you should take is to have an overview of your finances (including income and any expenses). Your present financial situation will play a key role in making wise decisions for your business. You also need to identify areas where you can spend less or even cut out certain expenses. Also, identify areas of potential revenue. If you can arrange for business funding, even better but think very carefully before you take out a loan to help you grow your business.
In 2020 we’ve had the pandemic which pushed new trends into the business world. Employees either on furlough or working from home to help contain the virus. This has highlighted the practicality of outsourcing – it is cost effective and simplifies things, especially if you’re a new business. Outsourcing can really help you budget and try out your business idea. If you outsource to self-employed contractors, they are responsible for paying their own national insurance and income tax.
If your business idea includes employed staff and a business loan, ensure that your plan looks professional. Keep the plan short – don’t allow it to be too wordy, too detailed or too difficult to read. Definitely include financial forecasts and expectations. Research on how your bank assesses a business plan. With that in mind, draft a plan that shows your lender you are clear about your business plan, and you understand exactly how to run it.
SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. These will be in your plan but not necessarily in your business plan, which is presented to the bank. The strengths of your business will include your brand, the patent, your unique selling point and the quality of your product. The plan’s weaknesses will be around finance and viability of the product, usually who your customers are but also who your competitors are. Threats would likely be possible downturn in the economy or new competitors.
There’s obviously a lot more to a business plan than the few points we’ve covered in this article. We’re business lawyers who would like to help you get started. If you’d like to have an initial free consultation, please give us a call and we can discuss a way forward for your business planning or even just revisit your business plan. SG
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