A real business plan can be more of an obstacle than a blessing especially for unskilled and inexperienced entrepreneurs. Business plans are critical, but only for a certain objective such as obtaining financing.
The problem starts when we plan our business, but never reach a place where we implement the plans. This is a problem because the motive for planning is doing! There needs to be a balance.
A practical suggestion is to run a proof of concept. I know a proof of concept is usually linked to something in its infancy or an initial launch period, but that is not exactly what I am talking about. Think of it as a mini-business plan.
The objective of this proof of concept is simply to see whether the idea will work or not. Here the emphasis lies in the process of implementing the plan and not merely writing the plan on paper. All of this is aimed at reaching the objective to determine the viability of the idea.
This proof of concept must be workable – it must be written and structured in such a manner that it is practical and simple to implement.
The first step in writing a proof of concept is asking questions. Let’s begin with the what?-question. What will you be doing? What is it that you will offer? What is the objective or vision for this concept? Vision might be too long term. An objective might be better in order to keep it short and sharp. Mark Twain made the funny, but all to true statement: “I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.” It might be difficult to keep your objective concise, but it is essential! That is where the impact lies and it Is precisely that which will keep you motivated and focused. Remember that you lose people with long explanations. Keep it clear. At the end of this process you can create a full document and fine tune it into a business plan.
As entrepreneurs, we have an eye for opportunity. This entails that we are continually tempted to change our objective. Having a clear objective will aid you in knowing when it is your opportunity or when it is another’s opportunity. Opportunities can be distracting and a leader who changes his or her mind constantly will confuse their team. In essence, having a clear objective makes it easier to say no to things that do not align with your objective. It keeps your mind focused on where you are heading.
I challenge you to wake up in the morning with an objective. Realign yourself with that objective every day. True entrepreneurs realign themselves with their objective everyday regardless of the money in the bank, complaints from customers or the state of the economy.