Writing a Business Plan

Warning: Watch Your Assumptions

Always make your assumptions explicit and make sure to go back and review the assumptions as you track progress and manage your plan.


Develop Your Business Plan Video

This is an 8-part narrated presentation, a lot like presentations I do with groups. It covers how and why to develop a business plan, followed by how and why to track, review, and revise as you turn that business plan into essential business management — whether you’re using the plan to show to banks or investors, or not. You should...


Business Planning like Building Blocks.

Think of your start-up business plan as a matter of blocks; pieces. You don’t have to have the whole block structure done before you take any next steps. Start your blocks where you like. Some common blocks are the mantra, the mission statement, the keys to success, maybe a break-even analysis, or a SWOT, or...


English is so unique and can be so difficult

English is difficult to learn and use properly, whether it is your birth tongue or a second language. Incorrect or ambiguous usage can cause you, your business plan, and your company no end of problems. For an entertaining sojourn into English etymology pick up Bill Bryson‘s book The Mother Tongue: English and how it got...


Using Spell Check Isn’t Enough

We have all become complacent, trusting our software spelling and grammar check tools. These certainly help us find misspelled words, but they will let a properly spelled, incorrect word sail right on through. In writing a business plan, or in any of your other business communications for that matter, this type of error can kill...


Business Plans are Always Wrong

Seth Godin includes venture competitions to his Pundits are (nearly) always wrong post yesterday. I say take that a step further: business plans are always wrong. I have to say I like how well this ties into his post on Starbucks from a couple days earlier. That’s because we’re human. Business plans predict the future....


Q&A: Where Do I Find Market Information

Question: I am working on my business plan and I need target market information and demographics. Since my business is quite unique (a holistic health center) I am not sure how to find the information that I need to feel in this part of the business plan. Answer: It’s easier than you think. First, refocus...


Good Ventures, Bad Plans

What’s up with this? Good ventures, represented by not-so-good plans. You read the plan first, then meet the people, listen to their pitch, and ask questions. Last week I judged a semi-finals round at the University of Oregon’s New Venture Championship for the tenth time in 11 years. Every year has been different, this year...


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