The best business plans aren't necessarily long and complex and they should explain the most important information. Business plans are broken down into three key sections (usually with a few sub-sections added in there):
What do you want to achieve?
How will you achieve it?
What do you need to do along the way to get where you want to be?
Those three points all seem pretty similar, and that's because they are. They're all interlinked and they should all follow "SMART" objectives:S
pecific (what do you want to achieve?)M
easurable (how will you achieve it?)A
ttainable (a good business plan has to be challenging, but also attainable)R
elevant (your objectives need to be relevant to your business)T
ime-Bound (a business plan is usually broken down into short, medium and long-term goals e.g. the next 12 months, 1-3 years, 3-5 years)
A good business plan will cover off the three key sections and follow the SMART objectives. Your business plan can have several objectives and different methods of measurement and all the objectives may not have the same "completion date" (but they'll all have one and that's the key point).
When writing your business plan, you should also consider any personal expenditure- what are you going to live off when starting your new business? Can you afford time off work to start it? Do you have money put to the side to invest in your own business? If so, how long can the business last on your investment?
To download a copy of our business plan template, click here