More Info
									                                     BUSINESS PLANS

A business plan is a detail plan of action in which every aspect of the prospective small businessperson’s
enterprise is set out. It is a comprehensive self-explanatory plan detailing:
     What the small businessperson intends doing;
     Why he believes his idea is feasible;
     How he proposes to implement his idea;
     When he intends doing this.


Drawing up the business plan is important because it can be used to:
    Obtain financing;
    Sell the business idea;
    Improve personal performance and that of the enterprise.

The majority of retail landlords insist on a business plan when an application is made for premises. It
indicates to them that the small businessperson has taken the trouble to examine his/her business idea
thoroughly and put his/her thoughts down on paper. A business plan forces the small businessperson to do
a test-run of his/her ideas and will prepare him/her for most of the events, which may occur. It is also an
indication of the small businessperson’s dedication and shows the he/she is serious in his/her desire to
implement his/her business idea.

Because the business plan must include the feasibility study of the proposed business idea, it will quickly
inform the reader whether there is any chance of success.

The business plan is also of great importance to the small businessperson because it compels him to arrange
his ideas in a logical manner, to stimulate reality and anticipate obstacles. It is therefore an essential part of
decision-making. The small businessperson must constantly refer to his/her business plan, as it is a good
way of comparing actual and set objectives. By continuously updating his business plan, he can monitor,
control and ultimately improve the performance of his enterprise.


The business plan can be divided into sections in whatever manner the small businessperson prefers.
Regardless of the format he chooses, it is important that it always be well represented, set out in a logical
manner, comprehensive, easy to read and, as far as possible, based on irrefutable facts of evidence.

The following is merely a guideline for the format of a business plan:

        Title page and table of contents

Prepare a professional-looking title page and table of contents, which should preferably include the
             - The name of the enterprise
             - The type of enterprise
             - The name(s) of the owner(s)
             - The address(es) and telephone number(s) of the owner(s)
             - The logo or emblem (if there is one)
             - The date of presentation of the business plan
             - Clearly numbered headings with corresponding page numbers.

Source Unknown                                                                                                  1
       Introduction

The introduction must be relevant and arouse interest in the business idea. The following information may
be included:
             - A description of the product or service which the small businessperson proposes to
                 manufacture or sell.
             - The reason why he thinks that the enterprise will be feasible.
             - The short-, medium- and long-term objectives of the enterprise.

       Description of the proposed enterprise

The following information must be included under this sub-heading:
            - The type of enterprise that has been chosen.
            - A comprehensive list of the small businessperson’s educational qualifications, work
                 experience and training courses which have been attended
            - The legal requirements such as licensing, permits and tax regulations.
            - A comprehensive description of the products or services.
            - A description of the business premises including characteristics of the layout (If possible,
                 a floor plan can be included.)
            - A comprehensive and purposeful Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats
                 (SWOT) analysis of the proposed business.
            - A description of the small businessperson’s competitors and their products.

       Marketing Plan

With the marketing plan, the client will explain how he will achieve his outcome. This section of the
business plan is critical and will be scrutinised.

The marketing plan must include the following information:
            - A description of the specific target market or consumers to which the small
                 businessperson intends selling, including gender, age, income group, geographical area,
                 and so on.
            - What percentage of the market share does he hope to capture and or retain in the short-,
                 medium- and long-term and what is the estimated turnover.
            - A description of the purchasing, cost, price, sales and marketing communication

       Financial Plan

             -   A detailed income statement of profit and loss account for a projected period of 36
                 months. (In other words, a monthly account of all sales and expenditure, as well as the
                 profit or loss anticipated by the small businessperson.)
             -   An indication of the expected break-even point.
             -   A detailed cash flow statement for the projected period of 36 months. (A month by month
                 forecast or budget of cash that will flow into and out of the enterprise.)
             -   A detailed balance sheet for the projected period of 36 months. (A statement setting out
                 the assets and liabilities of the enterprise at a given time.)
             -   Scenarios (sensitivity analysis) indicating what will happen if the performance of the
                 enterprise is good or exceptional, average or poor.
             -   A statement of the personal contributions made by the small businessperson, for example,
                 capital outlay, stock, equipment and so forth.

Source Unknown                                                                                             2
       Plan of Operations

This plan must include the following:
            - A description of the number of staff that must be employed, as well as why, where and
                  how the small businessperson intends recruiting them.
            - A description of the management and staff of the small business enterprise, their training
                  and experience and their job descriptions and remunerations packages.
            - A description of the administrative or record-keeping systems.

       Conclusion

A business plan must have an interesting ending. The positive attitude and motivation of the small
businessperson must be clearly evident. The following can be included:
             - A summary of the reasons why the small businessperson believes his business idea will
                 be successful.
             - Why he believes that he will receive financing.
             - A motivating factor for other people to have confidence in his prospective enterprise.

Source Unknown                                                                                          3

To top