Start from the very beginning understanding that your business plan ought to be specific to your business needs and objectives. Every business ought to have a plan, but not every business needs a full formal plan with carefully crafted summaries and descriptions.
A business plan is not a document you create once and store in your bottom drawer. It is a living guide that you should develop as your business grows and changes. Successful businesses review and update their business plan when circumstances change.
Business plans are decision-making tools. The content and format of the business plan is determined by the goals and audience. For example, a business plan for a non-profit might discuss the fit between the business plan and the organization’s mission. Banks are quite concerned about defaults, so a business plan for a bank loan will build a convincing case for the organization’s ability to repay the loan. Venture capitalists are primarily concerned about initial investment, feasibility, and exit valuation. A business plan for a project requiring equity financing will need to explain why current resources, upcoming growth opportunities, and sustainable competitive advantage will lead to a high exit valuation.
A business plan is a blueprint for how your business will run and reveals what future direction your business will take. Understandably you will want to be careful who you show your plan to and avoid your competition seeing it.