Friday, March 02, 2007

Entrepreneurs: Have a business plan

it's 11.43pm on a Friday night. While the rest of you are out having fun, I'm poring over my notes and trying to write these books!

I got an email the other day from someone that I worked with. She's setting up her own business and, very sweetly, was asking when my book, The Rules of Entrepreneurship is out. She was telling me that she is writing her business plan - a task that is more complex than one might assume. But, most amazingly, a lot of would-be entrepreneurs skip this step.

I think that's foolish.

A business plan helps you to crystallise your ideas, clarify your goals, and prepare to explain it to other people. It encourages you to focus on exactly what you need to do and pushes you to think about the practicalities of founding your venture.

Writing a business plan is as much about clarifying your goals for yourself as it is to communicate your goals and persuade others. If you can’t write a plan that makes sense to yourself, how will you explain it to investors, suppliers, and customers?

But I just came across an interesting quote by a famous American humanitarian, Dr. Effie Jones:

Failing to plan is planning to fail.

I just wish I'd found her quote six months ago when I was writing my book on entrepreneurship!

Talking of books, it's 11.52pm and I need to do at least another half-hour's writing before I go to bed...