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How to develop a killer business plan [Thread] #BankerX
1. Keep it simple “I didn't have time to write you a short letter, so I wrote you a long one" - Mark Twain The ability to refine an idea & distill down a strategy into just a few words takes time. Throwing down buzzwords is easy, finding clarity is difficult. Stick to one page
2. Business Model Canvas A graduate business school favourite & one of the most powerful business plan templates out there. Highly adaptable to any industry, clearly shows trade-offs & is designed for all elements to align to the overall vision. Link: https://www.alexandercowan.com/business-model-canvas-templates/
3. The Lean Canvas Modified from the Business Model Canvas with a strong emphasis on optimizing start-ups. Both the lean canvas or business model canvas are great tools to settle on a business plan within an afternoon. Pick one & start. Link: https://leanstack.com/leancanvas
4. Avoid turning your business plan into your pitch deck A pitch deck will have forecast financials, address questions on hurdles and target securing funding. There will definitely be some overlap. Your business plan needs to be brutally honest. Don't word anything softly.
5. Distill down your business plan into an elevator pitch Give yourself 30 seconds to translate the problem you;re solving. This sounds easy - it's probably the hardest part of developing a business plan You only realize what your game plan is when you're speaking to a stranger
6. Don't pay expensive people to write it for you You have a better grip on the vision better than anyone else. You need to be in FULL control of the strategic direction upfront Better to have your plan professionally reviewed by someone you trust once you're done with it
7. Be clear on your next 3 week/ 3 month/ 3 year targets Focus on short term goals. Longer term plans always change. If the aim is to onboard 5 new customers in September - hold yourself and your team to it. Small wins, lead to bigger wins. Plans are only as good as execution.
8. Highlight what you're great at There are MANY tools, plug-ins, third party services dedicated to solving your weak spots. In many cases it's cheaper to use them instead. Focus on what gives you an edge. Investors buy into your unique traits. Sell your strengths hard.
9. Understand your competition Developed by Michael Porter, Porter's 5 Forces is another favourite business school tool. It's also rated as one of the ten most influential papers in Harvard Business Review history. Spend time really analyzing where the real competition lies.
10. Safeguard your intellectual property Don't float around your business plan wider than it needs to travel. Make sure you apply for the relevant trademarks, patents and licenses. Throughout history great ideas have been copied. Make sure your hard is preserved and protected.
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