As we mentioned and discussed in some detail before, after securing the investment funds, another major purpose of the startup business plan is to guide you on the way to success. As was also mentioned, composing a business plan is not a simple process. This leads us to the next question in this article series. This question has to do with the business plan composition process and the difficulties it entails.
Question: What are the common problems faced by beginner entrepreneurs when they decide to compose their own startup business plans? What should they anticipate to go wrong in this process in order to avoid it without the help of an expert business plan writer?
Answer: When writing your own business plan, there are five major obstacles that we have noticed during our years in the field of business plan writing.
- It is a very time consuming process. Many startup entrepreneurs don’t realize how long the process can be, when they have little or no experience in business plan writing. The market research alone can take 250 – 300 hours, and the entire process can span over 400 hours in total. When you are preparing to launch a business, time is of the essence. You need to sign a lease, hire employees, buy equipment and more. A 400 hour delay in securing the investment funds can set you back more than you can afford.
- It is not what you like to do. Once the beginning business person finds out how long and tedious the process is, it often becomes unbearable. Most people don’t want to deal with this part of the business, same as business people hardly ever do their own accounting and bookkeeping. When you want to open a daycare facility (we have helped finance 11 daycares so far, by the way), you want to work with kids, not with numbers. If you open a restaurant, you want to prepare and serve food. Business plans are simply not something you likely want to deal with, and that’s why most DIY business plan attempts will lead to people giving up and hiring a professional, instead. Focus on your business, your passion, and leave this to the experts.
- Market research requires very specific knowledge and experience that most people simply don’t have. This is similar to accounting, engineering and pretty much any field where common knowledge is not enough. You need to know how to research the market, make reliable financial estimates for offer and demand conditions, and then put it on paper in an understandable way for the investor to be convinced to back you up. This is not easy.
- Composing a solid business forecast is also not a simple task. This should be based on market research but also includes your corporate structure, spending, manufacturing, marketing and sales. Nothing can be left out if you don’t want uncomfortable questions to be asked by the investors when you present it to them.
- Finally, there is the hesitation of being afraid to make mistakes. This is potentially a good thing, as it can save you from failure. Taking a weak plan to an investor will lead to it being declined, and there will be no second chances. You want to get it right the very first time.
Those are the difficulties that are faced by those who decide to produce their business plan on their own, and they are also the reasons why most will do well to get a professional to do it for them. Be sure to continue reading to find out more about business plan writing and the work process that expects you when you are going to do this with us.