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Advice from Outside the Square

Category Archives: Business Planning

How To Write Your Own Business Plan

If you own and run a small business, you must know the feeling where you finish a hard day at work...and wonder how that could possibly have got you closer to your ultimate goal? It is frustrating because all of us started our small businesses with a clear purpose in mind. It may have been to "be our own boss" or to "invent a better mousetrap" or to "provide a balanced lifestyle for my family." But somewhere along the way, we went off track and now, all we do is go to work just to work hard! How can we get back on track on a day to day basis? (more…)...
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The Why And How Of Business Planning

OK, you’ve heard me talk about business plans before. Well, this week I’m going to talk about what the business planning process involves, and how you have to include the “why” of your business, why does it exist? You see, people forget that business plans are written to be read. Yes, that’s a revolutionary thought, isn’t it? People think that business plans are boring internal documents that you write so that you can follow them step by step to grow your business. No. That’s called a to-do checklist. Business plans are written to be read – by you, by your team, by outside investors, by supporters, by people close to you. Yes, they do form the basis of what you have to do in order to grow your business – but more than that, a business plan is a story of what you have to do in order to grow your business to become the business that you want. This takes much more than a list of things that are your goals and a list of actions to achieve those goals. This means that your business plan has to be a reminder, an inspiration, it must attract people, it must make them want to be part...
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5 Steps For An Indigenous Organisation To Start A Business

Are you planning to start a new business, either as a commercial business as part of your Indigenous corporation or as a social enterprise, or even as your private Indigenous-owned small business? A for-profit commercial business, even a social enterprise where you reach out to external "customers" in an enterprise that generates benefit for your members, is quite different from a community-controlled organisation that provides services to members. There are significant considerations such as the appropriate and separate legal structure that you would need that would separate the risks of an enterprise from the assets of your organisation. Even if you want to start a private business for yourself or your family, structuring is an important consideration so that you protect your family from the risks of the business. You need to take the proper advice about how to manage these risks. This article is about the steps you should take to ensure that your idea for the enterprise or business is feasible, and how to set it up so that it has every chance of success. Take these 5 steps as you start your considerations and planning. First, make sure that you understand what it takes to be in business for yourself, and assess your own...
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How To Explain Your Business Plan To Your Team

So, you've completed your Business Plan? Whatever it is, apart from starting to implement it – do you know what’s the most important thing for you to do now?

Explain it!

Who do you have to explain it to? Well, it depends – if you have a team of employees, you need to explain it to them. If you are work on your own but you use contractors, virtual assistants or friends to help you in your business – you need to explain your plan to them. Even if you work totally alone – you need to explain your plan to at least your spouse and family, if not your bank or other people involved in helping you. These are your “stakeholders” and you need to explain your big new plan to them because people hate change, and a plan represents change. If your plan affects them (how could it not?) you need to explain it to them. You also need to ensure that the people involved know about your plan - and especially the parts that they have to play - so that they can help you as required. You want them enthusiastic about the new ideas and the direction you...
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