What does a business plan do for you or your business?
Business plans provides clarity and direction. Business is more about thinking than execution. Execution is a consequence of thought. Without the thinking process your business could find itself meandering along a winding path into nowhere.
At any level, business is a resource allocation issue. That is, where and how do I apply my resources to firstly follow the path I've set and how do I maximise the output? The old adage "how can you get there unless you know where you are going" clearly personifies this paradigm.
By defining your business, you will set this clarity, you will accurately allocate your resources and you will prevent waste. And all those things will ensure you get to your end goals in the most efficient manner.
The starting point is quite simple, paint a picture of the following, try to visualise what your business will look like into the future. There are just four components that will drive your business forward and paint the picture of what your business should look like...
1. The products or services that you offer.
2. The markets you will serve
3. The customers you will serve
4. And the geographic reach of your business
Respond to the criteria above in two time frames, now and some point into the future.
That'll be the start of your journey. Then ask the question, "what do I need and what do I need to do to make that future happen.
Once that direction is set you can fill in the details with a marketing and a financial plan.