Failing to plan for your business venture is one of the most common causes for start-up failures, it has been warned.
According to business consultant Dr Warren Harmer, less than 5% of new business start-ups have a business plan and only 1% of entrepreneurs do any kind of ongoing business planning.
“I can only attribute this madness to ignorance, uncertainty or laziness, as the value planning generates for your business is enormous.” Harmer said.
In the book How To start A Business With Little Or No Cash, Harmer, a business consultant and coach at Crecer Business Solutions, says: “business owners often make the comment ‘my business plan is in my head’. Don’t fool yourself that this approach is adequate. You can’t review and refine what’s in your head it needs to be on paper.
“Imagine that you are about to set off on a very long journey in your car, across an unknown landscape, to a distant destination that you have never visited before. Starting a business without the business plan is the equivalent of making this journey totally unprepared. One possible outcome is a safe uneventful journey, followed by seamlessly settling in when you arrive. What is more likely though, is that you will get lost and encounter challenges along the way, most of which will cost you money, time and will cause you stress.
“The process of business planning is about you creating the most accurate picture of business before you start. It’s the equivalent of creating a journey plan and roadmap for your long journey, so that you increase the chances of getting there safely and being happy when you arrive. The more detail, information and knowledge you have, the greater your chances of success are.”
How To start A Business With Little Or No Cash is a business handbook edited by celebrity publicist Kizzi Nkwocha, whose clients have includede Dragon’s Den businessman Levi Roots.
In How To start A Business With Little Or No Cash Harmer admits that one of the biggest challenges of owning a small business is number of business functions that entrepreneurs need to manage at once.
He said: “some of your business decisions are small operational decisions that just keep your business going. But there are some bigger important decisions that will involve spending money. The imperative is to make decisions with your eyes wide open. To minimize risk and maximize the chance of success, all business decisions are made more effectively when you take the time to draw out your proposition on paper and seeing how it could work out. Business planning forces you to do this.”
Dr Warren Harmer is one of 15 business consultants that have contributed to the entrepreneurs guide, How To start A Business With Little Or No Cash.
How To Start A Business With Little Or No Cash, edited by celebrity publicist Kizzi Nkwocha, is available from Amazon and Mithra Publishing.