Updated: Apr 8, 2020
If you want to give your new business the BEST opportunity you have to have a plan. Even if you have no intention of using it to get a loan. You have to plan how to make the business happen plus the what-ifs. What issues will you have when opening? How do you leverage your strengths to overcome issues and risks? The ability to plan for a positive business outcome is easy, but planning out the negative side can prove difficult.
In the process of opening my own business, I never found one template to cover a full look at the business. Can you plan for every little detail, no. What you can do is think high level and create a base plan for handling worst-case scenarios.
One trait, which seems to separate me from other entrepreneurs, is my need to plan the business. I do not believe business will just happen. You need to plan how to make it happen through marketing and networking. As well as, worst case scenario, risk management planning. What is the worst case scenario for your business? You won't have all the details but you can make a loose plan to handle the situation. In a stressful situation having a base plan laid out can make the difference in a successful resolution.
Over the last couple of decades, corporations and governments have put more effort into planning out worse-case scenarios. Let's take the city of Lake Elsinore as an example.
Between 2018 and 2019 they dealt with the Holy Fire, Holy Flood, and then the Super Bloom came. Fires in California are common and Cal Fire is a great resource to help communities. Cal Fire has plans in place to assist each community. Riverside County stepped in during the early days of the fire to start the planning process for eventual flooding - which was planned around worst-case scenario.
When the Super Bloom came it clearly demonstrated the city's lack of understanding for the traffic congestion in the area. They also had no clear plan on how to deal with traffic congestion at the magnitude we saw. The city that wants to be an extreme sport destination but could not handle the traffic of flower gawkers.
Do you want your business to be unable to respond to risks that could negatively impact your business, like the city of Lake Elsinore? Or do you want a plan to work from should the need arise? The amount of time and effort you put into the business plan could mean the difference between surviving the worst or going under.
I do offer services in business planning which includes my template to look at different aspects of the business. My background in Business Analysis helped me to determine what was needed in a template.