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Business Plan
You may think of a business plan as something of a one-size-fits-all affair. You just plug in some facts, figures, and numbers and voilà, you have a plan. In truth, a business plan is like a map or a blueprint that is constantly evolving and changing. How do you get your business started and get it up and running? That is a business plan. Eventually, you will need investors or stakeholders and you will need a more detailed plan to present them. If all goes well, eventually you will want to expand your business, meaning you would need a plan for that. No matter what stage of the game you are in, here are 3 tips to creating a stellar business plan.

1. Start with the basics and build from there

No matter what stage of business you are in, from startup to seeking funding, if you don’t have a business plan yet, start by answering the most basic questions. What do you want to do and who do you want to market to? From there, answer more complex questions like what resources do you need to do what you want to do and what do you need to do to get those resources? Your business plan is a plan for overcoming the next obstacles you need to overcome to move forward.

2. Use tech

Your business plan is likely to go through many iterations and you don’t want to have to start from scratch every time you add, tweak or modify it. Most likely, it will start out fairly simple and grow more complex as you grow. Software like LivePlan can help you add, tweak and redesign every step of the way.

3. Build it out, then narrow it down

Building a solid business plan is a constant process of expanding to explore all of your potential options, then narrowing it down to the best and most expedient. Before you present your plan to investors, lenders or other potential shareholders, you also want to pitch it to several non-involved parties to see if they can find holes in your plan or even recommend better options that you may not have thought of. By the time you pitch it to individuals you are actually looking for buy-in from, it should already be tweaked, tested and honed to perfection – and ready to evolve again.