Most entrepreneurs create a well-thought out business plan when they launch their business. Now, the question is: how often does a business owner look at the plan after that? It can be easy to get caught up in the daily craziness of running your own business and push that business plan to the back burner. But creating, sticking to, and refreshing a business plan can be critical in your business’s long-term success.
What’s the benefit of a business plan?
A business plan is a general outline of how a company wants to grow in the coming years. It includes a current market analysis, management structure, product description, marketing plan, and financial needs. The original business plan you drafted helped organize your thoughts, plan out your goals, and receive initial funding. So, if that business plan was created to reach your goals, what can you do now to help your business take the next step? Refresh that business plan!
How to refresh your business plan
1. Sit down and re-evaluate your last business plan.
This can seem challenging but discovering if your first plan still reflects your current business positioning is the first step in revitalizing your business’s long-term goals. This step is especially critical if you come to realize your goals have changed over time.
2. Ask yourself: does this existing plan help you and your business achieve your current definition of success?
If not, it’s time to go back to the drawing board and revamp those outdated sections.
3. With your up-to-date business plan, you need to create a timeline to achieve those goals.
Break the timeline benchmarks into bite-sized pieces: three years, one year, and even quarterly. Each passing business quarter should have moved your company closer to the goals you set. You created this business for a reason, now make sure it achieves everything you envisioned it would.
Consult your advisors
And, you don’t have to do this on your own. Consulting with mentors and advisors when restructuring this plan can be the key to keeping yourself grounded yet ambitious. Please feel free to contact any of our small business advisors or myself at Bankers Trust today. We are here for you beyond the initial loan that got your company up and running.