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What should I include in my business plan?

If you are a Missouri business owner, then you know that sometimes things do not go according to plan. Competitors arise, deals fall through and unexpected clients land right on your doorstep. There is absolutely no way to plan for everything, but that should not prevent you from working with a planning perspective.

Planning should likely be an integral part of operating your business. That is because business plans are more than just an exercise you must perform to secure a bank loan or attract angel investors. These documents are tools with the power to help you identify your risks, growth opportunities and potential goals. 

You probably want to spend as little time creating a plan as possible, and that is a sensible strategy. However, the Small Business Association suggests that you make the business plan you need. Along with minimizing your effort, the SBA suggests you identify and execute the plans that benefit you:

  • Growth plans specific to your business stage
  • Detailed and summarized plans for outsiders
  • A lean internal plan with budgets, top-level strategy and specific information

There are plenty of other ways you can focus your planning efforts. For example, you could plan for a specific aspect of your operations, a business territory or a set period of time. Just remember to include enough information, informed input and analysis in your plan that it does its job: guiding your leadership through uncertain times. Please do not think of this article as professional advice. It is meant only to educate.

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