The Entrepreneur Forum | Startups | Entrepreneurship | Starting a Business | Motivation | Success

Writing a business plan

Accelerate wealth. Build a business that pays freedom. Join more than 70,000 entrepreneurs and register for the Fastlane Entrepreneur forum. Remove ads? Join the INSIDERS.

zipan

New Contributor
Apr 14, 2011
39
4
9
28
I find it very surprising that I didn't find a post on how to write a business plan on this forum. Therefore this post. :p

I found a very good site with information on writing business plans:
Free Sample Business Plans and Business Plan Software

I highly recommend it to write a business plan. It is not only important for regular businesses but also for an online business. All is it for your own, it gives you clarity, direction, goals,...

Remember:

PREPARATION IS HALF THE VICTORY!!

LOVE, Light & Peace
Zipan
 

Shades

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Apr 8, 2011
335
339
180
unless its absolutely necessary for raising capital, business plans are completely worthless and a waste of time IMO.
 

CEBenz

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Apr 16, 2011
834
241
89
Tacoma, Wa
The general consensus has been the business plans are little more than toilet paper and only have value if you're seeking funding. The customer will ultimately dictate the direction of your business, not your business plan, assuming you plan to survive. Not one of the business owners I know has a business plan. Just saying.
 

rocknrollkid

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Mar 23, 2010
1,196
123
82
California
Business plans take 20 minutes to write.
It's good to have a general overview for what your trying to do even though this will always end up changing.

They are essentially worth nothing though.

Write the plan, immediately take action and you'll be okay.
 

darkjediii

Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Jun 8, 2010
168
47
38
Washington, DC area
I wrote a business plan for every business I started. It came in very handy when I needed it. The most useful part for me were the P&L statements, 5year projections, sources and uses of funds, etc. Basically the financials, it gave me a clearer picture of where I was going.
 

Emmanueljr

PARKED
Apr 23, 2011
4
0
8
35
USA
Yeah,I am looking forward to start the business in the neat future and ave been looking forward to have some good ideas. Actually this site is more than useful for me.I have find plenty of Inspirational stories here and great deal of Information too on business.
I have not find the software on the site,Will you please share the link of the software here alongside the detail either it is freeware or not.
 

PaulRobert

Gold Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 15, 2009
1,024
1,513
519
28
New Jersey
I do not have a business plan either. If I created a business plan in the beginning, it would of been changed countless times. What I have is 2 things.

1. A business goal list for myself. It is basically a to do list that maps out the next steps of my business. Every time something is accomplished, it is crossed off the list. Everything can be edited without the headache of changing the entire list.

2. A packet about my business, my product, and me. Whenever someone asks for a business plan, I provide them with the packet. All they are really looking for is some background information about you and your business. (Unless you are looking for funding.) I have attended panels with VCs and they have stated they had thrown out 20 page business plans and actually invested in businesses that had tangible assets (prototypes, ect..), some clients, and only a 1-2 page summary of their business.
 

zipan

New Contributor
Apr 14, 2011
39
4
9
28
Business Plan Software and Marketing Plan Software - Palo Alto Software

That's the site for the products, you must pay for it but I wouldn't pay for such product before you make any money from your business.

I don't have any experience with this products, I found the site interesting for making business plans that's all. But it's best that you first search after open source software.

Maybe this site can help you

SourceForge.net: Find, create, and publish Open Source software for free

LOVE, Light & Peace
Zipan
 

AndrewKent

Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Apr 11, 2011
33
36
70
In the military, there is a saying: "No plan survives contact with the enemy."

In business: "No plan survives contact with the customer."

(got this from the book "Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive While Others Die")


Like MJ explains in his book, why waste 100 hours writing a business plan that will go out the window once you encounter diverging market forces (customer needs).
 

johansunburg

New Contributor
Aug 3, 2021
5
3
11
Starting up an insurance company and outlining the business plan. I've searched online and found nothing related to average financial projections in the first year for a P&C agency. Does anyone have experience or recommend a place to go to write a business plan to get accurate information about a new insurance agency's annual premium sold in the first year?... and years following.
 
Last edited:

Mattie

Platinum Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
May 28, 2014
3,230
4,201
1,036
50
Netherlands
I find it very surprising that I didn't find a post on how to write a business plan on this forum. Therefore this post. :p

I found a very good site with information on writing business plans:
Free Sample Business Plans and Business Plan Software

I highly recommend it to write a business plan. It is not only important for regular businesses but also for an online business. All is it for your own, it gives you clarity, direction, goals,...

Remember:

PREPARATION IS HALF THE VICTORY!!

LOVE, Light & Peace
Zipan
I agree business plans usually are good for presenting them to get funding as when you write a Grant they want to know all the details.
This is more for boards and funders.

The actual business itself is naturally adapting, adjusting, and is never going to stay on the same plan long-term.

This is why you see most businesses in mainstream with upgrades in training, seminars, and technology ever year. The Changes in procedures, rules, regulations, policies, procedures, and legal laws.

While it may be a temporary blue print of what you want to do, it is not something built in concrete. When you have people who believe you have to stay in a certain perimeter long-term, it can actually be where you fail, because you keep believing it has to be on this plan. "One Way" tends to be an obstacle, delays, and prohibits production.

Even if you have a plastics machine with a mold, you might believe the parts come out every time in perfect condition. The plan is they're flawless. Fortunately, the plastic can get burned and the parts are thrown out called waste. The plastic itself can be contaminated.

You might plan on cooking your last egg and you drop it on the floor.

Business plans are no different.
 

Bigguns50

Platinum Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
Feb 12, 2013
1,651
3,162
785
Sedona, AZ
I have a mentor here from the SBA to help with financing. Great help. I used the SBA business plan form Write your business plan.

Like others have said, if you need financing from banks, this is a must. It might also help you look at aspects of your potential business you hadn't given thought to. Someone mentioned it takes 20 minutes to write...NOT my case.
 

Kung Fu Steve

Legendary Contributor
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
Jul 8, 2008
2,284
5,760
1,316
Road Warrior
I have a mentor here from the SBA to help with financing. Great help. I used the SBA business plan form Write your business plan.

Like others have said, if you need financing from banks, this is a must. It might also help you look at aspects of your potential business you hadn't given thought to. Someone mentioned it takes 20 minutes to write...NOT my case.

To get the bank to finally say yes to a broke 20-year-old kid, I had 2 sessions with SBA mentors (for free), they looked over my business plan, and apparently, that went a long way for getting my loan.

If I remember right, it was only a couple of pages.

BUT

I'll add my in-person pitch of who I was and what I was going to do became my business plan. I just delivered it orally (giggity) instead of written.

@zipan Your business plan could be written on a napkin: Who are you going to serve, what are you going to do for them, how is it any different than what's out there, and why are you the person to do it?
 

Sponsored Offers

MARKETPLACE Fox Web School "Legend" Group Coaching Program 2021
Hi - I sent out some emails with the updates but I'll PM you now also, thanks. The issue is...
  • Sticky
MARKETPLACE NEW: The Best School for Going Fastlane (Now open for summer enrollment)
Read the free book, some excellent insights. I also did the website quiz and I did a visual on a...
MARKETPLACE Not sure how to start? This free book will teach you how to build a successful web design business
Hi Fox. Starting the book and got through the introduction. Had a conversation with Andy Black...
  • Sticky
MARKETPLACE You Are One Call Away From Living Your Dream Life - LightHouse’s Accountability Program ⚡
Chris is super sharp and is aware of many facets of entrepreneurship and can help get your...
Introducing MJ's Personal Unscripted Network, Join Now for FREE!
Any chance to make it available outside of US? It has been available outside of the US on...

Forum Sponsor

Learn Fastlane Business Skills & Get Profitable Within 30 Days...

Get Started Now

New Topics

Fastlane Insiders

View the forum AD FREE.
Private, unindexed content
Detailed process/execution threads
Ideas needing execution, more!

Join Fastlane Insiders.

Top Bottom