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How to Plan Your Arizona Business Plan
One of the first and most important steps in starting an Arizona business is writing your business plan. But the first step in writing your plan is to plan out that plan. That sounds redundant, but it’s not. By taking the time to plan out your business plan, you can greatly reduce the time spent on wrong decisions as you move forward.
1. Figure Out Your Objectives
Think of what you want your business to be in 5-10 years. Be specific. How much time are you willing to invest in your business now, in two years, in 5 years? How many employees do you want to have? Is your main objective to sell your business for a profitable sum? Answering questions like these can help you figure out where you are going with your business.
If you find you are having trouble determining your business objectives, use some of these questions to help you out.
• Are you willing to invest a lot of time and money into this business, possibly with little or no profit in the beginning?
• What will happen to you financially if the business should fail?
• If it does succeed, where do you want this business to go?
• How much do you expect/need/want to make in the next year? Next five years?
• Is there a broad enough customer base for the products or services you want to sell to make the business profitable?
Once you have envisioned where you want to be in the future, jot down some ideas on what it will take to get you there.
2. Plan How to Use Your Plan
The next step is figuring out how you want to use your plan. There are many ways to use a plan such as for financial aspects or for growing your employee or customer base. Here are a couple of questions to ask yourself:
• Is your main goal to generate cash flow? If so, you will need to determine the management, marketing and financial aspects that will be used to make you that money.
• Are you going to use the plan to gain employees? To grow your business staff, you will need to determine things such as compensation, medical plans, retirement benefits and stock options.
• Are you going to try to be acquired? If so, you need to structure the company in a way that will be attractive to buyers.
3. Scrutinize Over Your Plan
Your business probably won’t be successful if your plan isn’t carefully prepared. This is the reason why you need to go over every detail of your plan. Look at the plan as an independent party, and try to see where things could possibly go wrong. Then adjust accordingly. When looking over your plan, you want to think about both financial success and pressure. Here are some questions to think about:
• Are you willing to make the initial financial investment this business will require?
• If you are getting outside investors, are you willing to give up some control to those investors?
• How long before you estimate your business will start to make a profit?
• What are those projected profits over the years?
• What could keep you from making your projections?
• Will you be able to make a personal profit after paying the business’s monthly expenses?
• What will happen to you financially if your business should fail?
• How many hours a week will you need to work, and are your willing to do so?
• Will you be able to still spend time with your family or take needed vacations?
• What will happen if you should get sick? Who will help run the business during that time?
• Will you earn enough to maintain your current lifestyle?
• Does your family understand what sacrifices they are potentially facing when the business first launches?
Answers to these questions can help you figure out if your plan is specific enough and whether it will work for you. As you look carefully at the details you might discover that this business isn’t the one for you. Keep in mind that the better the plan, the higher your chance of success.
Written By Brad Denton
40 N. Central Avenue, Suite 1400-1532
Phoenix, AZ 85004
GDP Business Blog
Mesa, AZ 85213