And you want to get to there, a point in the future (usually three to five years out), at which time your business will have a different set of resources and abilities as well as greater profitability and increased assets.
Your plan shows how you will get from here to there.
Related: 7 Steps to a Perfectly Written Business Plan You can visit our small business encyclopedia to learn more about business plans or our Form Net area to get the necessary forms to get started.
Video: What Investors Really Think About Your Business Plan.
A lot of those mistakes (most of them, in fact) are the result of poor planning.
Bad location, a marginal niche, having no specific user in mind, raising too much or too little money--all of these issues can be prevented or at least mitigated with good planning.A business plan is a written description of your business's future, a document that tells what you plan to do and how you plan to do it.If you jot down a paragraph on the back of an envelope describing your business strategy, you've written a plan, or at least the germ of one. You start here, today, with certain resources and abilities.Moreover though, a solid business plan is a living document that will continue to guide your efforts as your business grows.Recently, I shared 18 Mistakes That Kill Startups, an infographic created by Mark Vital over at Funders and Founders.Creating your business plan is more than just getting your ideas down on paper for potential funders to see.It's an exploratory process in which you can evaluate your options, test your assumptions about your idea, and even discover new opportunities.Because that's the thing--your business plan is a pretty important.Any funder worth his or her salt wants to see it right off the bat.This one says you just have to answer a few simple questions and will be "done before you know it! A business plan should take time and a lot of homework, but if you've already done that, Law Depot's template is a decent choice.It walks you through getting started, marketing, product, competitive analysis, SWOT, and more, with a window below the input fields to show you the plan as you work away at it.