Business plans are often mistakenly considered to be something only created at the beginning of a business. Having a definite business plan is indeed important for a startup company. In today’s world of rapidly changing marketplace conditions, it is equally important to review and adjust your business plan periodically for consistent growth in your small business. Evaluate your business plan in light of the current conditions of the marketplace and your business to see if you can make some profitable adjustments.
What ultimately matters is your business’s success. There’s no harm in dropping your business plan in favor of a better one that more effectively advances your company.
These key elements can help you evaluate your business plan and guide you in crafting an improved one.
Reviewing Your Existing Business Plan
A good business plan has clearly defined goals. Review how effectively you’ve met your existing goals. If you’ve fallen short in some areas, then determine whether the problem is a performance issue or a fault in the plan. Include key members of your company in the evaluation. Brainstorming for new ideas on how to grow your business can help immensely in making needed adjustments.
To detect possible marketplace changes that may require your business to adapt, take a look at your competitors, noting any significant changes they may have made in their own approaches or efforts. Note any new competitors that may require some business plan adjustments – for example, a competing store offering similar products at prices lower than yours. Examine the marketplace for new opportunities to expand your customer base. Approach setting goals and priorities as if your business were just now entering the marketplace.
Fitting Your Business Plan to Your Finances
Changes in business revenues, either up or down, should serve as a guide for adjusting your business plan. You may have made plans for expansion, such as opening an additional location, but an overall downturn in the economy that leads to a decrease in revenues and profits may make it a good idea to put a temporary hold on that expansion.
Finding that your business has generated an unexpected excess of working capital is also a reason to consider adjusting your business plans. Sit down with your team and discuss some potential business growth steps that you may not have planned making but that might be good to work into your business plan while you have extra cash flow available to fund them.
Business Plan Consultants
Generally speaking, no business plan consultant can match your knowledge of your business and where you want to take it. However, a consultant might be helpful in designing a specific part of your business plan, such as a marketing campaign aimed at a new potential customer base with which you lack familiarity. If you lack experience in creating a business plan, a less expensive option is reading a book or using a software program that guides you through the process.