The million-dollar question is this: Should modern business plans be short and to-the-point or long and highly detailed? The answer is not simple because it depends on the type of business and the urgency of startup. For example, an entrepreneur who developed a new social media site wants to start up as quickly as possible, and can do so without much capital. Technology moves so fast, and the competition is so intense, that delaying startup equates to lost business. Spending months writing a business plan does not make sense because market dynamics change so rapidly.
The story is different for a company interested in starting a new manufacturing facility. The technology entrepreneur can startup, market and nurture a new company with a very low capital investment. A production facility is inevitably going to need major investors and large bank loans. Manufacturing facilities are only started when market analysis indicates an unmet need will still be there when the plant has a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The business plan must be long, detailed, analytical, and include voluminous documentation.
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Less is More
So what is a modern business plan? It is a document that fits neatly in between the two-page summary and the detailed business plans. Entrepreneurs can get to market as quickly as possible while still recognizing the importance of a business plan. Following are some characteristics defining the modern business plan:
• Limited number of pages by design, appealing to investors who like shortened business plan versions
• Appeals mostly to personal investors
• Shares the vision of the business
• Gets right to the point concerning market opportunities and how the startup will take advantage of them
• Clearly describes the market the entrepreneur is entering, including assumptions, how the new business will alter the market, and contingency responses when plans go awry
• Laser sharp focus on what the business offers and the target market
• Engaging presentation of the business
• Often includes customer feedback from product or service market testing already completed
• Solid financial projections with emphasis on generating revenues, minimizing expenses, earning profits, and generating adequate cash flow
• Goal of achieving profitability quickly – sooner rather than later
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Clarity of Thought
Is a business plan even necessary? The answer is a loud “Yes” because it forces clarity of thought and planning, and no small business entrepreneur will be able to take advantage of funding opportunities unless able to present a business plan to the angel investor, financial institution, or small venture capitalist. Even businesses that are already operating because of rapid startup need to develop modern business plans because they help entrepreneurs clarify plans for growth and expansion.
The day will come when the successful small business is ready for expansion and will need investors. The modern business plan can be accompanied by a pitch deck, elevator pitch, and one-page synopsis so the entrepreneur is always ready for quick presentation.
Staying on top of what the business and investor market wants and expects in a business plan drives the success of OGS Capital. An expert team of professionals with real-world experience in 30 global markets work with SMEs interested in developing a customized, modern business plan. No templates are used to ensure the presentation is unique and fresh. Complete the online contact form for more information.
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Illustrative business plan samples
OGSCapital’s team has assisted thousands of entrepreneurs with top-rate business plan development, consultancy and analysis. They’ve helped thousands of SME owners secure more than $1.5 billion in funding, and they can do the same for you.