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A business plan can be a daunting task. Getting started on the plan can seem overwhelming. But what if you're not sure whether you've covered all the bases in your business plan? Ask yourself the following questions and see if they're answered in your plan.
Why did you decide to enter this business? What was attractive about the opportunity? What market need did you see that you wanted to exploit?
What have you accomplished so far? What stage of development is your company at right now? What milestones have you reached? What kind of company do you want to build? What brand image are you seeking to establish? What is the long range objective? For example, "To build revenues to $50 million within 5 years."
What are your products/services? Can you explain the technology involved? When will they be ready for introduction? What benefits do your products/services provide that are clearly superior to the competition What are the proprietary aspects of your products/services? What is your sustainable competitive advantage?
What is the size of your market? How is the market changing and evolving? What is the driving force behind market growth? Who are your competitors? What are their strengths and weaknesses? How do you think the competitive environment will change in the next 3-5 years?
What are the barriers to entry in your industry? Who will your targeted customers be? How are you going to reach those markets? Specifically, how will you distribute and promote the products/services? How much will it cost to reach these markets?
Who are the key individuals in your management team and what have they accomplished in their careers? Who owns the company today? What prior experience does the management team have that will lead to success in this venture? How will the product be manufactured? What type of facilities and equipment do you need? Where will your office(s) be located?
What risk factors could keep you from achieving your forecast results? How much capital do you need and what will it be used for? What exit strategies are available to you and your financial partners? What is the company's financial history? What are the projected revenues, expenses and profits?
If you can answer each of these questions in your business plan you've done a great job of writing the business plan. You have a well thought out clearly explained plan for your business in the upcoming years.
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