Business Planning – What Do We Include and How Does It Look
In a previous blog, business owners who are members of the Albany Creek Business Contacts discussed whether businesses really need to undertake business planning (“We Know We Should, So Why Then Don’t We?” http://balanixsolutions.com.au/we-know-we-should-so-why-then-dont-we/ ). It was agreed that businesses did need plans and that business planning needed to be more than just “in our head”. However, it was also agreed that business planning and plans could take various forms with various detail to support and meet the needs of the individual business.
So, what do business owners believe are the critical information to be contained in plans and what can they look like?
In relation to content, the following was proposed:
- Real and enduring purpose – this needs to be clearly stated so every decision you make must support this purpose.
- Stakeholder analysis – stakeholders include clients, suppliers, owners and staff.
- Marketing/Advertising/Sponsorship plan.
- Cashflow/Budget/Revenue & Expense analysis.
- Risk Management/Contingency Plan
- Pricing/Price Structure (eg, current pricing and planning for future increase)
- Staff – roles/nature of employment (eg, part-time, full-time, contract etc)
- Responsibilities and timeframes – ie, who is going to do what by when.
So what does the Business Plan need to look like? Well, in a nutshell – whatever suits you and your business, that you are going to use – whatever makes it visible!
Whenever business planning is mentioned images of 50+ page documents, which sit in a draw, never get used and collect dust, emerge. But this doesn’t have to be – they can take whatever form that makes sense to a business owner and enables them to run and grow their business. Suggested mediums that business use include:
- Vision Boards (like the one Kirsty has above)
- Operational Boards – eg, Marketing Board, Operations Board, IT Board etc
- Mind Map
The thing is successful businesses need to have direction and plans. However, those plans need to support the business not hinder.
(Blog contributors – Leonard Whittaker (Action Cycle Learning) Rob Carmody (Australian Integrated Communications) Sally Balwin (Balanix Solutions) Kathy Patterson (Brendale Stationery Supplies) Matthew Fox (Brisbane hosting & Web Design) Kirsty Newbery (Caring Cottage) Brad Davies (Conquest Pest & Termite Control) Scott Deaves (David Deane Real Estate) De Wet van der Nest (Express Air Con Cleaning) Oriano Giammichele (GT Racing, Mobile Mechanic) Stuart Bywater (Bywater Design) Rhennen Ford (Streten Mason Lawyers) Tracey Carter (Scrub Mutts) Jason Matthey (Insurance Web) Damien Jenkins (Australian Unity, North Lakes) Anne-Louise Underwood (SMS Toolkits) Bruce Hall (Wombat Electrical)
Albany Creek Business Contacts consists of local quality and reliable businesses who provide a wide range of services from home and residential services to B2B and commercial services. Our service areas cover primarily Albany Creek, Eatons Hill, Brendale, Aspley, Warner, Chermside, Strathpine, North Lakes. However many members will cover greater areas.
Albany Creek Business Contacts meet fortnightly on a Wednesday morning for a 7am breakfast and networking meeting.
Balanix Solutions – Taxation | Accounting | Business Advise.
Situated in Strathpine on Brisbane North, we partner with our clients to assist them in their accounting, business management and bookkeeping needs. Our clients vary in industries from professional services (such as law, vet and dentist) to the trades (mechanic, bricklaying, plasterer etc), hospitality and retail. Are clients are located in the Pine Rivers area (including Brendale, Lawnton, Albany Creek and Eatons Hill) through to Kallangur, Petrie, North Lakes and Caboolture, as well as Brisbane South, the Gold Coast and various other parts of Queensland.
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