Do I need a business plan?

Yes…every small business owner and entrepreneur should have a business plan

At Pathway WBC, we help entrepreneurs at every stage of business achieve success. From those who have just an inkling of an idea to established owners looking to hit the $1 million mark in revenue, we see a common trait among the most successful entrepreneurs: a solid plan.

Let’s take a look at why every entrepreneur needs their own solid (but flexible) business plan.

A clear business plan will help you:

  • Fully understand why your business exists and how it functions
  • Explain your business to customers and investors
  • Strategically plan for growth through funding or hiring
  • Ensure profitability through understanding goals, pricing and distribution
  • Market your message more clearly to potential customers

However, a business plan also serves your business in many more less obvious ways. A business plan will help you set specific objectives for you and your team, will help you share strategy and decide if you need to hire, and even guide whether to lease or buy a space or purchase assets.

a goal without a plan is just a wishBecause business ideas evolve and change, your business should be a live document, regularly revisited and revised. This is exactly the reason we use the business planning software “LivePlan” in our Embark Cohort.

LivePlan software enables entrepreneurs like you to keep their road map in front of them, manage the future and support the decisions every business owner must make. Most importantly, a clear but flexible business plan will help you manage your cash flow (the number one reason businesses struggle or fail). Many businesses fail, not because they are unprofitable, but because they ultimately become unable to pay their debts when they are due.

If you need a stronger business plan and a clear grasp on your financials, we invite you to join our Embark Cohort – hear from our Embark 1 graduates in this blog post. As part of your Embark Cohort membership, you get a 6 month subscription to LivePlan, so your work stays with you after you graduate!

The Embark Cohort is seven weeks long and classes are on Thursday nights from 6pm-9pm. Here are the dates for the Embark Cohort for 2017:

  • Embark 1: COMPLETE – meet the Embark 1 Graduates in this blog post
  • Embark 2: Thursday, April 6 through Thursday, May 11
  • Embark 3: Thursday, June 8 through Thursday, July 20 (skips week of July 4)
  • Embark 4: Thursday, September 7 through Thursday, October 19
  • Embark 5: Thursday, November 2 through Thursday, December 14 (skips week of Thanksgiving)

Ready to apply for the Embark Cohort? Email Tara Houston to join.

Learn more about all our cohort levels on our membership page or take our short quiz to see which cohort level is right for you!