How to Check in on Your Original Business Plan

Any prospective franchisee or small business owner has to develop a business plan for their new entrepreneurial vision. We’ve covered that subject before, but what we’ll be discussing today is the need to periodically check in with the original plan for the purpose of reviewing your goals for success. You might be surprised by the sheer number of people who put in backbreaking work to create a workable business plan, utilized to drive the funding exercise, then put it on a shelf, allowing dust to gather. What good is that? Here are some compelling reasons for reviewing your original business plan…

It’s easy to get completely consumed by the details of running a day-to-day business operation, especially when you first start out. Everything is new, everything is exciting, your staff has begun to settle in and customers are coming through the door. This is what you want, that excitement of owning and operating a franchise of your own. You might think you’d turn to your original business plan only in times of crisis. What am I doing wrong? Why are my projections off? But in both cases of success or challenges, there is value in updating your plan based on what you’re seeing in the trenches.

First, it can be invigorating to check in with your original business plan. It should get you fired up about what drew you to the business proposition in the first place. Reviewing your plans, objectives, and projections should take you back to that ambitious feeling you had at the outset of your entrepreneurial journey. Don’t be surprised if going over your numbers reinvigorates your desire to succeed and even surpass your original outlook.

Second, you can use the business plan review as an exercise in evaluating your key performance indicators as a measure of your success at periodic times. Some of the questions you may want to revisit include: 

– Am I meeting my customer’s needs as outlined in my original thoughts? How could I improve their experience?

– How is my math? Do my projected numbers line up with my actual income? If not, why not?

– What type of fundamental adjustments can I make to refresh the plan, aligning it with what I’m seeing?

– Are any external factors hindering my growth or progress that I didn’t initially take into consideration?

Answering these and other questions can go a long way towards ensuring a consistent review of your hard working efforts.

Another avenue in this process is the introduction of a business coach or mentor to help give you an unbiased opinion of how well your original business plan is matching up with your current operation. It doesn’t necessarily have to be someone you hire out of the Yellow Pages, but rather a friend or relative who also is a business owner. It would be most likely turn out to be a meaningful exchange for you and a flattering request for them. Entrepreneurial journeys need not be a solo exercise.

Checking in periodically with your business plan and making sure that your ducks are in a row is a useful exercise. You’ve no doubt heard the phrase, “stick to the plan.” Well, it’s true. Your personal business plan is your road map to success and we could all benefit from a glance or two every now and then.

Let’s chat! There’s a local FranNet consultant right in your market who knows that market inside and out – knows the personality of the market – knows the competitive landscape. FranNet has a great track record of assisting individuals on their path to entrepreneurship, and one of our franchise experts would love to provide you with guidance free of charge. Sound like something you might be interested in? Get started here and find your local consultant right now!

Jul 20, 2017