You've had a great idea for a small business and now you can't stop daydreaming about becoming your own boss. Are you ready to take the next step and write a business plan? The process of creating a business plan is actually just as important as the finished project. While creating your business plan, you will expose and work out any weaknesses in your plan, educate yourself about your industry, and create a clear articulation of your plan and goals.
You can start a business plan using free business plan templates online (startupdaddy.com offers one) or buy business plan software from any office store. For more in-depth business plan help, you can enroll in a business plan course offered by your local branch of the Small Business Association (SBA) or Small Business Development Center (SBDC).
The main elements of a business plan are as follows:
Remember, your business plan is a living document that you should be reviewing and updating every 6 months as you move forward. Knowing this business plan inside and out will benefit you at the same time that it presents a clear picture to potential partners and investors and increases your chances of small business success.