What’s the plan?

walterNo business starts out with a plan to fail within the first two years.  No, expectations are high and dreams of owning a successful business are what put them there.  Then how did the dream fail?  How did it die?

I’ve heard it said that a dream without a plan is just a dream.  Until you take steps toward the dream it will always be just a dream and never a reality. However, taking specific steps that are well planned will give you a better chance of a successful business.  Have you ever taken off on a road trip to a remote area without using a map or GPS?  What chance do you have of arriving somewhere you’ve never been if you just jumped on I15 and started driving?  After a few hundred miles would you keep telling yourself that you’ll get there eventually if you just keep going?

Creating a business plan will give you the best chance of arriving at success.  Yes, it will also take hard work and sacrifices, but that will be outlined in the business plan.  You’ll also need to know if your business will work in the area you plan to place it, which will be the market analysis outlined in your business plan.  It will also take advertising, social media, connecting with the right business organizations, working with the community, hiring great staff, and more.  All detailed in your business plan.

It is rare for a business to take off without careful plans laid in place.  Yes, there have been some lucky ones, but think of the millions of businesses you haven’t heard about taking off in a blast of luck.  A business plan requires you to map out specific goals that are measurable.  It demands that you clearly put the numbers on the table.  Can you survive financially while your business is growing?  Can you put everything back into the business without expecting to show a profit for the first few years?  Can you weather the slow seasons?

A business plan forces you to see the stark reality of success or failure.  What if you have been in business for years?  Will a business plan help you?  Yes, taking the time to work ON your business rather that just working AT your business will clarify the steps or changes you need to make.

Here at the Chamber, we have amazing resources to help you get started writing your plan.  Give me a call and I will put you in contact with the right expert so you can start mapping out your dreams.

Vicky Walter is the CEO of the Mesquite Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached via email at vicky@mesquite-chamber.com or by calling 702-346-2902

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