I have been out of action for about two weeks because of a nasty eye infection. Not being able to post is troublesome. I need to get better planned about it.
Entrepreneurs are excited about their venture. Most of the focus is often on executing the project and taking the product to customers as soon as possible. In the heat, planning may be neglected. Without proper planning the risks at execution increase quite a bit. Of course it is not possible to think of all the bottlenecks that can hamper a project. But a little bit of planning makes for a lot less trouble later on.
As an entrepreneur, here are some of my favourite points on planning.
USP (Unique selling proposition) :
This the single most important point that differentiates your business from others. This could be a unique product feature, unprecedented service support, guarantees or anything else that makes your business stand apart. Getting the right USP is not easy and often it may even involve change of business plan. Without USP , your business does not have chance of competing with businesses of similar kinds.
SWOT Analysis :
Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is a must because it gives you a sense as to where you are standing in comparison to other businesses. Building on strengths while minimizing the impact of weakness is vital. Also knowing the opportunities and threats to your business gives you enough time to reassess your strategy and become better planned.
Cash flow planning:
You have a great pool of money right now. After one year, it might get reduced quite a bit. Unless you can plan for your expenses a few months after the beginning, it may threaten the existence of business itself. Having a well developed cash flow plan means that you are aware of the expenses and the ways you are going to meet them.
Many entrepreneurs think that people they hire are part of their team. They are technically part of the company. However a dedicated team stands with you in thick and thin. They could be your friends or family which will stand by you and willing to work with you without expectation of immediate rewards( unlike salaried employees). Having a group of people who believe in your cause is a must. Forming a dedicated team is part of planning stage and not when your business starts operation.
Scope of your project:
It is important to know the scope of your project. It includes the features of products that you are creating or the service that you are offering. Based on your risk capacity, you may enhance or limit your offerings. Writing down your scope of services helps you keep track of your project goals and timelines.