Why Business Plans Come In Two Flavors

By Dennis Zink, certified SCORE mentor.

Will a business plan ensure the success of my small business? If I don’t need financing, why do I need a business plan? Isn’t it true that most of these plans reside in a desk drawer or file cabinet, never to see the light of day?

I posed these and other questions to Richard Randolph, president of Florida Creativity Centers, Home of Practical Creativity in Bradenton. Richard is an expert on traditional business plans and the Business Model Canvas.

Business plans have two purposes — thus, two different versions.

The traditional, lengthy one with all the details is used when you need to present to a potential lender or investor. This should include everything, including your marketing plans, operating plans and financial details.

The other plan is for internal purposes. It is a shorter document to keep you and your team aligned on purpose and priorities.

Creating a business plan greatly increases your chances of succeeding in your business. Doing this homework for your company forces you to think things through. For example, do your assumptions make sense?

A comprehensive business plan will help you answer many important questions. You’ll have to do a lot of research, there’s no way around that! But the more variables you consider, the greater your chance for success.

So why doesn’t everyone do this?

Don’t stop now, read more.

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