In my most recent post in this 30 Days to ETA series, Leading Your Business, I explained that you can’t begin a business if you don’t know how it’s going to end. You have to identify where you want to go and why you are going there before you can figure out what type of business to acquire (You can read the post by CLICKING HERE). You must think strategically about the value of your business and then work to increase, or accelerate that value tactfully. And one of the best ways to start that process is by building a plan… The ETA Business Plan!
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Plan More… Achieve More!
Have you ever scratched your head and wondered why some businesses achieve more? It would appear that for some businesses, nothing holds them back from achieving more: more money, more clients, more contracts, more products, more everything! While those entrepreneurs are taking the bull by the horns, other business owners are getting run over by the bull. They can’t get out of the trenches (or the bull’s way!) They’re stuck in the everyday business muck and mire, and they’re getting trampled right out of the business.
What Do Business Owners Who Achieve More Do Differently?
When I talk to business leaders, I always make a point of asking them what it is that they do to achieve more? The response that gave me the most insight (or most recently) said, “It’s pretty simple… I think we do a better job of implementing what we plan.”
In writing and reading that response, and sharing it with a few thousand friends since the conversation this leader was spot on. The difference between success and failure often comes down to being in the right place at the right time (If you’ve read any of my previous works, you know I love the quote “80 percent of success in life is just showing up” credited to Woody Allen. I’m convinced that preparation prior to showing up is the key. In other words, preparing your business plan consisting of business goals and outlines on how to achieve them. As a business owner, you have to start somewhere. So lay the original groundwork for success by developing a thorough business plan.
A goal without a plan is just a dream!Sam Palazzolo, Managing Director @ Tip of the Spear Ventures
What’s In a Business Plan?
A good business plan is essential and a foundational piece to your business’s success. But what is in a business plan? Here is an overview of Business Plan basics:
- Company description
- Market analysis
- Management and ownership
- Service/Product line
- Marketing & Sales
- Financial projections
- Business Summary
I wrote a comprehensive article about exactly what needs to be in a good business plan. If you’d like more information drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Purpose of a Business Plan… Global Domination (or to Become the Foundation for Your Business)
In order to acquire a business, creating a business plan at the beginning of your journey AND at the beginning of each year is fundamental to knowing what you’re trying to accomplish. I’ve heard it said that knowing what you want to achieve determines how well you succeed (as well as when). How do you know you’ve reached your destination if you didn’t have one in mind? What determines your business’s success if you’ve never defined success for yourself or your business?
Yes, a business plan is time-consuming and frustrating, and that’s not what we entrepreneurs want to hear. We have an amazing opportunity to buy a business with equally amazing products and/or an incredible service. We want to jump right into business and get that product or service to our customers who must be desperate for what we have to offer. Let’s make big money now!
Regardless to how tempting it is to push forward in business, remind yourself to take the time to create a business plan. Creating a business plan and keeping it at the center of everything you do will reap benefits in the long run.
The Foundation Drives the Business’s Success
At this acquisition phase, you won’t reach success by creating a one-and-done business plan and walking away from it. Theory became practice, and then practice became routine. I would encourage you to develop one-year revenue, product, service, improvement, and sales goals. Each team member contributes their thoughts and ideas, and agreement should be had (i.e., buy in) before we put them on paper. You needed the whole team pulling/pushing in the same direction.
Remember that end game is selling the business that at this point you haven’t yet acquired. With this in mind, every business has to get their leaders, team members, to buy-in to your future business goals. If everyone on the team gets it, they’re happier, fulfilled, and motivated to hold each other accountable to achieving your business goals. They propel you to greatness and your business to success.