Whether you're just starting out, growing your business or seeking outside help, a well-thought-out business plan is the vehicle you need to get you there. According to national statistics, at least 47% of start up businesses fail because they did not create a business plan. In this day and age, many of the "millennial's" feel as thought they don't need a business plan because they believe that tools such as social media and networking are key factors to influencing the success of their business. Although both tools offer a slight competitive edge when used correctly, it is still imperative to map out your business goals on paper.
A business plan is a very important strategic tool for entrepreneurs. A good business plan not only helps entrepreneurs to focus on the specific steps necessary for their business ideas to succeed, but it also helps them to achieve both their short-term and long-term objectives. One of the key ingredients of a business plan is the financial analysis and forecast. Often times entrepreneurs have a "general" idea of the financial needs of the business but struggle with forecasting how the business will look 1, 3 or 5 years from now. It is safe to say that many small business owners or free thinkers and can generate ideas by the minute. This type of free thinking can generally lead entrepreneurs in a number of directions, but when a solid business plan is created it allows you to always go back to your plan you developed for success.
A business plan is not to be used as the only tool for success but rather as a documented plan used to help focus strategy, manage milestones and metrics, assign and track responsibilities and performance.