Posted: October 17th, 2013
My Success Plan
My Success Plan
Step one: Defining a mission and vision statement
In launching my business when I am ready, the first step is creating a mission and vision statement, which I will intend to achieve. The mission statement will define my business, its purpose of existence, its primary customers, products and services that I will offer. The main purpose of the mission statement will be defining the purpose of my business. With a mission, I will be in a position to know what is important for the business and what is not (Pinson & Jinnett, 2006). It further creates a sense of direction by providing me with a focus. On the other hand, the vision statement will be the image of the business in the future. It will be articulating the hopes and dreams I have for the future and stating where I wish to be in the future. With vision and mission statement, I will be having a clear picture of my business purpose and future. With this, I will focus my resources towards attaining them. The mission and vision statement will help me with business planning.
Step 2: defining goals and objectives
The second step toward the success of my business would be defining the goals and objectives upon which I will dedicate my resources. The goals and objectives shall be aligned to the vision and mission statement. The goals will be broad statements stating what I intend to achieve in the long-term future. This will direct my planning and decision-making (Pinson & Jinnett, 2006). The objectives will state specific targets achievable within a certain predetermined period. The objectives will be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-specific. The objectives will act as the steps towards achieving the goals. The goals and objectives will help me in stating what I want to achieve and when the achievement should be attained. This will be quite helpful in establishing a plan for attaining the overall goal that is the mission. Additionally, this will provide a focus of the business (Ehmke & Akridge, n.d).
Step 3: analyzing the market
In this step, I will describe the market in which the business will exist. In this process, I will discuss the market aspects such as the targeted customers, competition, market characteristics and the means to gain a competitive advantage. Within this step, I will analyze and narrow down the potential customers to those who are likely to buy the product. Some of the issues to consider about customers will be whether they are local, national, international o global in order to know how to reach the customers (Ehmke & Akridge, n.d). The age of the customers, gender, lifestyle and income in order to help in pricing and putting the right features to serve the different customers. Other considerations can include religion and social background. The other issue to consider about the market is its characteristics. For characteristics, some of the factors to consider can be analyzed using porter’s five forces model. The factors include supplier power, buyer power, and barrier to entrants, rivalry and legal regulations. With a market analysis, I will be aware what I will expect and the needs to enter the market.
Step 4: Competitor analysis
After the market analysis, I will analyze the competition. This will entail conducting a detailed review of the competitors by considering such aspects such as market share, marketing plan, pricing, customer relationship, strengths and products (Ehmke & Akridge, n.d). This will also require defining the close competitors and their nature considering not all will pose direct competition while some that may not be obvious could pose stiff competition such as shopping malls. From each of the competitors, a SWOT analysis will be conducted in order to identify their weaknesses upon which to take advantage. It is essential to understand the operations and strategies of competitors in order to make a stand within relative terms among the competitors as well as know how to compete competitively.
Step 5: establishing a marketing plan
Any business requires marketing itself to the customers in order to create awareness to the people about its operations, products and services. A marketing plan will focus on four areas, which include the products and services offered, pricing, promotion efforts, and distribution. In this section, the products and services will be defined in details as well as their function, benefits, what they offer and their distinguishing features. Features should include its color, size shape, cost and its abilities (Morris, 2011). Other aspects could include packaging, support and warranties. Pricing will concern the strategy used to price the products and services. Some of the issues that will be considered during pricing are costs of operating the business, competitions and goals of the business. Some of the strategies to be considered include scheming, mark up cost, and penetration pricing. Distribution will describe the way the products and services will be distributed to the customers. It also defines the geographical area to be covered. The decisions within this factor will focus on the distributions channels and methods in order to avail the products and services to the customers within the required time. Finally, promotional efforts will focus on communicating to the customers about the value of the products and services offered. It will target on availing information to the targeted customers (Morris, 2011).
Step 6: Operation plan
This will involve defining ownership, organization structure, management, production a resources and legal issues. The aim of the operation plan is to state the plans that will be undertaken in order to achieve the purpose of the business. This will include the production methods, processes within the organization, decision-making, flow of information and other operations that ensure seamless flow of work within the business (Covello & Hazelgren, 2006).
Step 7: the financing plan
This step will deal with the sources of finance. Considering every business requires capital for commencing as well as operational finance to handle the budget, a plan will be necessary in order to succeed. This will concern with available sources of finance, emergency sources, how to repay in case it is a loan. Additionally, it will concern with forecasting costs that will be incurred as well as expected cash flows. This will be the final step before an executive summary is written to summarize all the points and placed at the start of the plan.
Covello, J.A. & Hazelgren, B.J. (2006). The Complete Book of Business Plans: Simple Steps to Writing Powerful Business Plans. Naperville, IL: Sourcebooks, Inc
Ehmke, C., & Akridge, J. (n.d). The Elements of a Business Plan: First Steps for New Entrepreneurs. Purdue University.
Morris, M. (2011). Starting a Successful Business: Choose a Business, Plan Your Business, Manage Operations. New York, N.Y: Kogan Page Publishers
Pinson, L. & Jinnett, J. (2006). Steps to Small Business Start-Up. Kaplan, L.A: Kaplan Publishing.
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