When committing to developing an ‘all important’ Strategic Business Plan there are several critical guiding principles to focus on:
- What are you trying to achieve? – Where do you see yourself in a years time? – Five years? However you structure the plan it will be an essential document to sell your idea to funding authorities, potential partners, or those who may be interested in collaborating with you?
- Dream big & Start small – Having your eyes focused on the objective is important but be mindful of not over-reaching. Start with a low level product before attempting to move straight into an epic project
- Keep your eye on profit – Keep close control on cash flow and measure this on a daily basis. Track the hours used as well as cash to ensure you are compensated adequately for your investment
- Be flexible with your Strategic Business Plan – Keep referring to your plan and be prepared to challenge your original thinking. If times get tough be prepared to increase spending and decrease profit. But remain in profit at all times.
- Be a cash flow manager – Always use sensible and sustainable funding and scale up when you experience success. There has been too many stories of people gambling their assets (homes and/or savings) on a sure thing that falls to pieces. Make sure your ‘sure thing’ is a ‘sure thing’ before investing heavily.
- Make extra proprietary products – If your SBP has focused on ten (10) sale-able items, be financially prepared to make fifteen (15). You will no doubt experience product flaws which result in returns. If you plan these additional allowances and you get through free of flaws, you’ll have more product to sell
- Don’t fear failure – To start with a financial burden is one thing, but make sure that your project does not have a negative affect on any real sources of income that you may rely on for day to day living. It would be stupidity to quit your regular day job just to make a low return from your project. If you believe you must take a risk, ensure you have an exit strategy plan built into your SBP.
Set yourself deadlines and you will be much more likely to complete what you originally set out to do. Plan and prepare sensibly and run your ideas passed a trusted adviser.