Why Your Business Needs a Plan

It’s exciting to be a launching a business and then driving it forward. Often though, everything seems very much ‘in the moment’ but it’s important to sit down and make a business plan. This is a document which outlines your business goals and strategies, as well as any steps you need to take to achieve these. In addition, it can include sales, marketing and financial forecasts.

Here are some reasons why having a business plan makes good sense:

As a vision document
Creating a business plan forces you to clarify your business idea and clearly define your mission and goals. It will provide a roadmap for your day-to-day activities and help you to understand what you are looking to achieve. A business plan should include specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound (SMART) goals. This makes it easier to measure your progress and adjust your strategies.

Strategic direction
A well thought out business plan outlines your business strategies, market analysis and competitive landscape. It will help you identify your target market, understand your competition and make informed decisions about how to position your business.

When you have a decision to make or you feel like you’ve reached a crossroads, then having a business plan to refer back to will ensure that your choices align with your original goals and strategies.

Attracting funding or investment
If you need a loan or any investment in your business, your bank or any investor will want to see a clearly defined business plan, along with your strategy for growth and profitability. A well-prepared plan can instil confidence in potential partners and customers, as well as investors, showing them you are professional and committed and giving them assurance in the longevity of your business.

Allocating resources
Having a business plan will help you to identify the resources you need to start and operate your business, including finances, human resources, equipment and technology. This helps you allocate resources more efficiently and effectively.

Communication tool
Your business plan can be shared with stakeholders, partners and potential customers to communicate your business’s purpose and value proposition.

An HR tool
A good business plan will not only give your employees insight into how they can drive the business forward, but it can provide evidence for potential employees that they are joining a professional company.

Cash flow
Here at Lewis & Co, a solid business plan can work hand in hand with keeping an eye on cash flow. All the numbers have to add up and any projections need to make sense. This is particularly true if an owner is looking for some outside investment or is planning to sell the business.

Cash isn’t just important to pay bills but a business needs it to reinvest and drive the organisation forward – expand and recruit new staff members. We can help you take the long view of your company, mapping out the challenges of your business venture, offering advice on how you can generate revenue, plan for expansion and generally laying the groundwork for you to refer to. This includes helping you with any cash flow forecasts, as well as profit projections.

Risk management
A business plan allows you to identify potential threats and risks your business might face (as well as its strengthens and opportunities). By recognising these risks in advance, you can develop strategies to mitigate them and be better prepared to handle unexpected situations.

It’s important though to accept that while a business plan provides a structured framework, it’s not set in stone and there should be some flexibility. We are never sure what’s round the corner – that was certainly the case with Covid 19 – and sometimes you will need to update your plan to reflect changes in your business environment.

When we work with a business here at Lewis & Co, we take time to understand what the owner is trying to achieve – both in the short term and the long term.

A good business plan serves as a roadmap that guides you through the various stages of your business journey. It helps you stay focused, make informed decisions and increase the likelihood of achieving your long-term business goals.

We can help you take the long view of your company, mapping out the challenges of your business venture, offering advice on how you can generate revenue, plan for expansion, and generally laying the groundwork for you to refer to.

If you need our help to write your business plan, please get in touch on: 01892 513515 or email: info@lewisandco.biz