Using a Business Plan to Answer Key Questions

A major reason for having a business plan is to make sure you are addressing the multitude of questions that have to be answered before you can point your business in the right direction. Trying to start a business without considering every detail is like looking for something in a disorganized room with the lights off: pretty soon you’ll trip, and if you fall, it’s likely you won’t ever get to what you were looking for. On the other hand, if you make a plan and follow it like a map, you will get to where you want to go.

Your business plan will answer these questions:

* What sort of business are you planning?

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Preparing a Business Plan For a New Restaurant

The preparation of a strong and detailed business plan is essential for a restaurant business for several reasons. Firstly, you will need it to be able to convince others, such as bank managers or investors of the viability of your plans. Secondly, it will be useful to you as the business owner as a place to compile your research findings, set goals and to run some hypothetical scenarios about how the business could run if things go better or worse than expected. Below we have outlined the key components of a business plan for a restaurant start-up.

Executive Summary

This part of the report should only be about one page in length and should introduce the reader to your proposal. Firstly you can set out your personal background and why you are interested in starting a restaurant. Secondly you should include basic details of your proposal such as the location that you have or are looking for, the theme or style of the restaurant, the kind of food that you will serve, whether of not you will be licensed and the type of clientele that you wish to target.

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Business Consultant Business Plan: Leave the Holes

Today we are going to talk about your business consultant business plan and I am going to challenge you to leave the hole. Let me explain what I mean. As consultants we do a lot of thinking. Our job is to think on behalf of our clients, but when it comes to our own business we think too much. Whether you are creating your first business plan or fifth generation new growth plan, I am going to challenge you to leave the hole. Don’t try to think through all the iterations before you actually roll the plan out. Don’t try to come up with every contingency, every plan A, B, C, D, E, F and G. Do your best to come up with sharp thinking, trust your thinking, and then roll the plan.

Old Mindset: Holes are bad and you must fill them. The old mindset that most of us have is that holes are bad and you must fix them. There is a fear that comes along with holes. We don’t want anybody to assume we haven’t thought our plan all the way through; we don’t want the public embarrassment. However, one thing about holes is that holes don’t make mistakes. If you allow your fear of failure to drive you, you will rush to create a new process to solve for a problem that may not exist at all. That rushed process can create plenty of mistakes. But if you have the courage to leave the hole then no new problems will arise. You can manage the situation with more patience and savvy.

Also, consider that a hole is a legitimate data point. Customer complaints are data. Lost revenue is data. Low employee morale is data. Even if you get a zero as the specific output, that is a data point as well. The holes you find are prompts to ask great questions. Think about how the work is supposed to be done. If you realize a hole, this is an opportunity to brainstorm around how the hole got there and solve for the root cause.

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