Howdy fellow and perspective entrepreneurs,
Today I am sharing a valuable resource with you. As entrepreneurs you have to think about a lot – your products & services, operations, marketing, funding, industry trends, sales, and more. It helps to have something that keeps you organized and ensures you’re thinking about all the aspects of your business. The most effective way to do this is through a business plan. What I’ll be sharing with you is an awesome business plan template!
A new entrepreneur recently reached out and asked me if I had any resources for business plans and this one immediately came to my mind. This template was developed by the Kaufman Foundation and is one that I have used for years. It has really paid off!
While attending the University of Central Florida this template was a very helpful asset and helped me win multiple business plan competitions. These competitions collectively provided $18,500 in startup capital to help my ventures grow. These business plan competitions included: Winning the UCF Joust Competition twice, being a finalist in the State Sunshine business plan competition and being a finalist in the Nascent 500 competition (where we pitched to investors in the back of a limo going around the Indianapolis 500!).
Each time I learned something new, found good content in a relevant article or had a marketing idea I would add it into my business plan template. Every so often I would go through the business plan, try to make sense of everything, and clean everything up so it would be more presentable if I needed to share it with anyone.For example if I learned something new about an industry trend, competitor, key prospect / target market, product requirement – it would go into the appropriate section of the template.
- Remove sections that are not applicable. Rename the sections as you wish.
- Anytime I have research, a marketing idea, or updates I drop my notes into the appropriate section. Remember a business plan is a living document / process and not a one time event. Since the world constantly changes you can drop important ideas, research and plans into the business plan as you move along. Test assumptions in the marketplace..talk to customers…review research, learn and update your business plan accordingly.
- Every so often go through the business plan and clean things up so everything flows together and is presentable to others if needed. As you go through try to make sense of research you previously gathered and new things you have learned.