Making a business plan isn’t just about the paper. Here, we’ll be talking about the mindset behind the business plan you’ll need to be successful.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people with seemingly good business concepts who attempt to make a business plan (financials and all), and never get any valuable use out of it. Some people are paying more than $1000 to have someone make a business plan for them, but it has no practical relevance to how they take action in their day-to-day lives to achieve the fore stated business results. What’s the point?
- 1 The Problem With Making a Business Plan Today
- 2 The Academic Business Plan
- 3 How The Compound Effect Plays into Making A Business Plan
- 4 A Little Background on Me
- 5 Mindset Ingredient #1: Commitment
- 6 Mindset Ingredient #2: Resilience
- 7 Successful Mindset Ingredient #3: Vision
- 8 Successful Mindset Ingredient #4: Solution-Focus and Willingness to Reach out
- 9 The Worse Thing You Could Do When Making A Business Plan
The Problem With Making a Business Plan Today
Part of the reason making a business plan has become such an utter disappointment to so many people is because they’re following academic processes rather than practical ones. In academia (including many books), making a business plan can be an overcomplicated process.
The Academic Business Plan
With the academic business plan, most of your forecasts are based on “market research” and industry trends rather than basing the expected results off of the person who will be implementing the plan (you). It’s backwards.
If I compared the process of making a business plan the academic way, it would be like saying we can know how fast you can run based on the average runner in your neighborhood. It doesn’t work!
Just because a business in your industry down the street is making a business plan that’s generating profits does not mean you’ll make a business plan that works. I don’t mean to “bust your bubble”, but there are some mindset factors that are REQUIRED before making a business plan that works.
How The Compound Effect Plays into Making A Business Plan
When you’re starting a business or even growing a business, you want making a business plan to remain simple because the reality of business is that it’s a compilation of experiments. Business is a science. In his book, Compound Effect, Darren Hardy talked about how each decision we make (good or bad) compounds onto the next, and creates correlating consequences.
The compound effect applies to business. You make a simple goal. You can make the goal to learn a valuable skill. Maybe you want to learn search engine optimization, marketing, or some other skill. Setting the goal is the first step. The success of a business is the compilation of small goals scaled up. Even more, a successful business takes a successful experiment and scales it.
A Little Background on Me
I’ve taken quite a few University classes, programs thru the Small Business Administration, high-end coaching programs, and paid for many other professional development programs to learn entrepreneurship. The Business plan is one of the most convoluted topics. It’s become 100+ pages of academic crap!
When I was starting out as an entrepreneur, doing the side hustles I told you about on my post 25+ Side Hustles here, I would do market research, and create an academic business plan. Do you think the etiquette or time spent on writing a good-looking business plan stopped my business ventures from failing? Absolutely not! The key to my successful (profitable) business plans starts with the mindset I’m telling you here.
Mindset Ingredient #1: Commitment
The nuts and bolts ingredient for my successful business ventures has been commitment. You need to commit to your business idea. Yes, you will want to be flexible, so as your experiments teach you more and more about how to make the business work, you can follow the customer demand. You don’t want to start and stop, give up prematurely, or get the reputation of being an unreliable person. In business, your reputation is everything, and commitment and consistency help create a sound reputation.
Mindset Ingredient #2: Resilience
Rather than your business plan being a cluster of research, hypothetical mambo jumbo, and a mashup of what worked for other companies, you want to think of your ultimate business plan as a document that states your beginning (or ongoing experiments). starter business plan will basically illustrate the opportunity you have in mind, how you think you can get there, who you will need to help you, what tools you will use, and ways you’ll measure your success.
Whether you are a seasoned entrepreneur or not, every business has elements of experimentation. For this reason, even large companies will have major flops. For example, look at the major flop Coca Cola had after 99 years in business! New Coke was a major flop! Can you imagine how many millions of people would have been absent of their favorite drinks if Coca Cola decided to give up after their New Coke flop?
Failed experiments are unavoidable, but your response to them will say a lot about your overall success as an entrepreneur. You need to bounce back when making a business plan because not all experiments will be successful–that’s the reality of the game of business.
Successful Mindset Ingredient #3: Vision
When you go into making a business plan, you have to have vision. There has to be a desired outcome or a goal. The desired outcome could be, “I want this business to generate X amount in sales monthly” or it could be “I want this business to help X amount of people weekly”, then you create a strategy with milestones, and challenge yourself (and your team if you have one) to attain the goal. Now, the goals have to be SMART goals, and they must be there.
The vision should encompass the desired outcome (at a minimum).
The strategy to reach the vision is what you create or you hire someone like me or my team to help you devise. The strategy should be a proposal on what actionable steps you are going to take (whether in marketing, in customer service, or whichever business aspect) to reach the desired outcome.
Hiring a business strategist can be the lifeblood to your business because their area of expertise is in driving businesses from point A to point B and so on. Essentially, your strategy will tie all the other ingredients together and your action on making the business plan come to life will make your business successful.
Successful Mindset Ingredient #4: Solution-Focus and Willingness to Reach out
Don’t get tied up on making a business plan document. Focus on your first baby step, then your second baby step, and your third. Write down the baby steps you are going to take to achieve your business and write the desired outcome for your actions. Continue to reference what you’ve written and the deadlines you’ve written. If you get tied up, reach out and find a book, course, webinar, or contact me to help you navigate your business concern.
Udemy is an amazing resource for budget-friendly courses on subject matter like making a business plan. I’ve taken tons of courses there, and I recommend checking them out! You can find courses sometimes as low as $10 that will give you extreme practical value day after day.
However, budget-friendly courses are just that…budget-friendly courses. Sometimes you need a hand more than an article or course can give. How to Entrepreneur is here for you. Everything I create was made to ensure you don’t stay stuck in a business rut when you have business questions or concerns, so utilize the resources we provide or reach out if you don’t see something you need. I’ll do my best to make it.
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The Worse Thing You Could Do When Making A Business Plan
The worse thing to do is to dwell on a problem too long. The quicker you can create solutions, the quicker you will continue climbing your ladder to success.
Let making a business plan be exciting. Besides, it’s a document that challenges you to reach a higher potential personally and in your business–that’s all. Like I said, reach out if you need help making a business plan or strategy. My team and I have loads of experience creating business strategies and making a business plan for clients. We offer 15 minute free consultations, so you can see if we’re a good fit for you, so there’s no risk involved.
Hopefully this helps. Now it’s your turn…What are your experiences with making a business plan? Have you done them the academic way? How did that work out for you? Have you done them the practical way? What results have you gotten from that?
I’d love to hear your experiences! Leave your comments below.