Business Plan Question

K4Lic0K4Lic0 Posts: 1subscriber
edited April 2009 in Business Planning
Hello everyone, I have an idea for a startup in my area and I was wondering if it looks bad to use a program such as `Business Plan Pro` as opposed to just writing one from scratch?
K4Lic04/6/2009 12:37 AM

Comments

  • patentandtrademarkpatentandtrademark Posts: 104subscriber
    what counts is that things are well thought out.
  • MattThomasMattThomas Posts: 2subscriber
    When you say "looks bad", looks bad to whom? Are you looking to get potential investors or a loan? Is anyone going to be seeing this plan other than you and your staff? What type of usage do you plan on getting out of this business plan?
  • robertjrobertj Tampa Bay, FloridaPosts: 0subscriber Member
    Hello everyone, I have an idea for a startup in my area and I was wondering if it looks bad to use a program such as `Business Plan Pro` as opposed to just writing one from scratch?

     
    If you are using a software program to help you organize your thoughts and cover all the aspects then it`s a good thing, because nothing "looks bad" like a poorly developed plan.
     
    If you intend to use this plan to acquire capital, then I would not use a "sample plan" as the foundation. Those of us who develop and read a lot of plans can spot one that was created by using a sample.
     
    The content is critical as are the underlying assumptions.
     
    Finally, if you are intending to acquire outside capital, the business plan is only part of the process.
  • TopBizHelpTopBizHelp Posts: 3subscriber
    Using outside programs and sources is a good idea. You will get ideas and situations that you may not of thought of on your own. More information is better then less.
     
     
  • CarstenJacobsenCarstenJacobsen Posts: 0subscriber
    If you are completely new to writing business plans you might get inspired by looking at other people’s business plans or sample business plans. The structure and subjects covered are more or less the same.
    Before sending your business plan to VCs, Angels or banks I would strongly recommend having it reviewed. Not by your family and friends, unless they have the experience, but by experienced consultants. It can be an accountant, an attorney or a consultant specialized in business plan reviews.
    You might spend some money but in many cases it’s a good investment. If they don’t get your idea, or are missing a lot of information, so will the investors.
    I`ve had great success with that. The last business plan I wrote I paid a consultant about 4 hours for the review.
  • ChrisBenjaminChrisBenjamin Posts: 13subscriber
    Parroting what others have said: if its for your own use, Bplan Pro is just dandy.  For anyone else, not the greatest.  Presentation is way too canned looking, and people rely on Bplan Pro to guide them thru the process and have a fully flushed out bplan, when it doesn`t always capture the true uniqueness of every company.  Any bplans i write I`ve tailored specifically for the company to focus on whats most important to them and the audience they want the plan for. 
    I haven`t seen a business plan come out of software that I`d present to an investor.
  • StevenSStevenS Posts: 1subscriber
    Instead of using a software program you should read and use the outline on the SBA website. They have a lot of good information about writing a business plan and it will help you create something that doesn`t look like it was taken from a software template. There are also a lot of good books you can read at your local bookstore to better tailor it to your target.
    And while I agree that your personal presentation has to be good, not everyone is going to see your personal presentation that may be deciding to give you a loan or not. So your business plan has to have the same amount of excitement and passion as your personal presentation should have.
    I would save my money on the software. I have used it before and it`s no better than any outline you can find on the internet.
    Use the SBA site for a good reference starting point
     http://www.sba.gov/smallbusinessplanner/plan/writeabusinessplan/index.html
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