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How to Write a Business Plan

December 7, 2020Brent Schroeder, Director of Emerging Business of the Abilene Industrial Foundation

Do you have an idea for a business, but just don’t know where to start?  Or perhaps you already have a business, but feel you are sort of “wingin’ it”?  If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, then mark your calendar for Thursday, Dec. 10 at 11:00 am.  To celebrate December being National Write a Business Plan month, America’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Texas Tech will be hosting a FREE webinar to walk you through the process of writing a business plan.

COVID-19 might have disrupted many areas of our lives this year, but one thing it did not take away was the entrepreneurial spirit of Americans.

According to businessinsider.com, there was a record increase in applications for new businesses in the US in the last year.  New applications for an employer ID in the US “reached 1.1 million through mid-September, a 12% increase over the same period last year and the most since 2007,” according to an analysis of US Census Bureau data by The Wall Street Journal.

This amount of new business creation is awesome, especially during a worldwide pandemic!  However, not all these new businesses will survive.  Let’s be honest – starting a business is inherently risky. Roughly half of startups survive long enough to hit the 5-year mark, according to the US Small Business Administration.

What is one way you can mitigate those risks? You guessed it – write a business plan!

Taking the time to write a business plan is an important step to ensuring you are on a path to success.  After this week’s webinar, I encourage you to reach out to America’s SBDC at Abilene and set an appointment with them.  They provide no-cost face-to-face business consulting and at-cost training on a variety of topics.

If I haven’t convinced you yet, then here are 5 reasons from the U.S. Small Business Administration on why you need a business plan:

  1. It will help you steer your business as you start and grow.

Think of a business plan as a GPS to get your business going. A good business plan guides you through each stage of starting and managing your business. You’ll use your business plan like a GPS for how to structure, run, and grow your new business.

  1. It’s not as hard as you think.

A business plan is a written tool about your business that projects 3-5 years ahead and outlines the path your business intends to take to make money and grow revenue. Think of it as a living project for your business, and not as a one-time document.

  1. It will help you to reach business milestones.

A well-thought-out business plan helps you to step back and think objectively about the key elements of your business and informs your decision making as you move forward. It is essential whether you need to secure a business loan or not. Keep in mind that the plan does not have to be like an encyclopedia and does not have to have all the answers.

  1. It can help you get funding.

Business plans can help you get funding or bring on new business partners. Having one in place will help investors feel confident that they will see a return on their investment.

  1. There’s no wrong way to write a business plan.

There is no right or wrong way to write a business plan. You can pick a plan format that works best for you. What’s important is that your business plan meets your needs.

Now that I have convinced you to write a business plan, let’s start with the first step.  Sign up to attend our webinar by clicking HERE.  Also, visit the event’s Facebook event and RSVP to let us know you’ll be there.  I promise you won’t regret it!

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