Starting a business or side hustle is the new wave. Over half a million new businesses get started each month. You’re likely here because you want to add to that number and start a business (or two…or three). I highly suggest having a plan in place — don’t just drop everything and wing it. “But I just want to get started,” you say, “and a plan takes too much time and effort.” I’m here to counter that thought with, “It may not take as much time as you think.”
Business plans come in varying shapes and sizes. Here is a list of the different types of plans you can put together for your business.
The Traditional Plan – A traditional plan (you know, the 30-40+ page plan) is very detailed and includes appendix items like financial statements and sales projections. They are best used internally and usually prepared for businesses that will have employees. Here is a printable outline you can refer to for more details.
The Investors Business Plan – If you’re applying for a loan or seeking investors, you’ll want a much shorter business plan to present to potential investors. This type of plan is usually 2-3 pages and focuses on how your company will be profitable and how the investor will benefit. Get more details here.
The 1-Pager – For all of you solopreneurs and hustlers with a desire to start a small business, you can get away with a 1-page business plan. This plan usually outlines your products, customers, value proposition, and business goals. Here’s an outline from Bplans.
With these options, there’s no excuse NOT to write a business plan, but if you insist on NOT writing one, at least spend some time THINKING about it.