Young: The importance of planning

But there are some key points that you need to consider and act upon to start yourself on the road to success.

I want to share some insight this week about the importance of effectively planning to start your own entrepreneurial journey.

As an entrepreneur, you get to be in charge of your own destiny. Every day is different with new opportunities to explore.

But there are some key points that you need to consider and act upon to start yourself on the road to success.

First, I want you to step back and identify if you are passionate about your new venture idea?

For example, a photographer my be passionate about colour, light and capturing moments on film. An entire day with a camera in hand may not seem like “work” at all. It feels, for a photographer, life fulfilling.

It is this passion that will get you up at 5 a.m. or give you the energy to work late and on weekends and forever question yourself for just about anything and everything.

One of the world’s leading authorities on business and success, suggests that to be successful, we must work longer and harder and perhaps practice the 40 plus formula—40 hours per week for survival and everything over 40 hours is toward your success. Can you handle that theory?

Simply put, if you have chosen to move forward with a business idea that ignites your “inner flame,”   then, congratulations, you are on the way. An important question that aspiring entrepreneurs, even existing entrepreneurs, should ask themselves early in the venture planning process stage is whether or not to prepare a formal business plan.

While an entrepreneur may be challenged for time while the venture itself is being developed, there are a number of reasons to develop that business plan.

First, a thoroughly prepared business plan may provide the necessary direction to encourage an entrepreneur to evaluate where he or she may wish to take their newfound venture, and define what they want to get out of its implementation.

Second, a business plan provides a structure, a roadmap as I like to call it, to an entrepreneur’s thinking process, making certain they have considered the most important determinants for their entrepreneurial success.

Third, it may help to think about the future. For instance, a business plan can assist in developing a response to any competition that may exist or arise in a marketplace.

Finally, of critical importance for me is that a business plan will aid the communication of the essentials behind an entrepreneurial venture, not only to financiers but also to existing employees, potential employees, suppliers and customers/clients.

Let’s face it, a carefully crafted business plan can be used to elicit the reactions and recommendations of others to aid and inspire you to greatness along the path for your entrepreneurial dream machine, so take advantage of that aid and support power.

So, let’s agree today that authoring your new venture creation “business plan” is one of the most important things you will do in the entrepreneurial world.

Yes, the importance of such preparation has been debated over and over again. And yes, this author has personally met and befriended those of millionaire status who did not originate their entrepreneurial journey with a business plan and achieved phenomenal success.

But, they do possess one to-day to maintain, enhance and teach others that success is geared to proper effective planning.

The editors of Profit magazine sometime ago commented in favour of business planning with this argument: “You won’t get everything right the first time around, but the very act of planning—knowing your products and  services and analyzing your markets—will help you anticipate problems and opportunities and see you through the rough times that may lie ahead.”

There is unquestionably still to this very day a strong assertion within the world of entrepreneurship and small business that business planning is a worthwhile  activity, an important part of fundamental new venture creation and effective management in increasing the aim of profitability.

While writing the business plan, you may uncover new information about your potential customers that may lead to a new product or service. This occurrence is not uncommon. You will also learn very important information about the apparent trends in your industry area.

A Google search on “Business Plan” templates will give you a result of 1,290,000 options.

If this seems a tad overwhelming, then attending a workshop may be the right answer for you through the resources available to you in the Okanagan such as: Community Futures, Women’s Enterprise Centre, Business Development Bank and the Okanagan Valley Entrepreneurs Society.

Also, most chartered banks have documented information to assist you as does the Kelowna and West Kelowna Chambers of Commerce, the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission.

So, let’s get to it budding Okanagan entrepreneurs. Banks, investors, customers and your family, will love you to pieces when you present a “work of art “ business plan to reflect your entrepreneurial spirit.

Best of Luck. Let me know how you make out.

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