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Business Plans On A Budget

Posted On: 2006-10-11Length:

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Hello and welcome to another edition of the Duct Tape Marketing podcast. This is your host John Jantsch, and my guest today is Gwen Moran. She's a freelance writer whose columns often appear in Entrepreneur Magazine. And also the author of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Business Plans." So welcome, Gwen.

Thank you John, I really appreciate you having me.

You know, I have a question that doesn't really have that much to do with the content of the book, but I've always been curious. These idiot guides, the whole series, how does someone come to write one of those, or is there an actual company that puts all those out? Tell me a little about that.

Yes, absolutely. The Complete Idiot's Guides are published by Alpha Books. And you know, the titles are sometimes misunderstood. The books obviously don't assume that any level of idiocy among the readers, but the premise is that they're written so simply and so easily and break subject matter down into such bite-sized pieces that anyone can understand them and master a topic.

It's like the, what's the other series, the something something for Dummies. It's sort of a competitive series. So you had a co-author on that book, is that right?

Yes, and,

We probably should acknowledge her, shouldn't we?

Absolutely. Her name is Sue Johnson, and she is the director of the Robert M. Valley Small Business Development Center in New Jersey.

Oh great. So this is going to sound like a really dumb question, but a lot of time these concepts, these business concepts or terms like a business plan, have a whole bunch of different meanings depending upon where you've been exposed to them, where you come in to the process. So tell me, can you give me just kind of a quick definition so that we're all on the same page, you know, what the heck is a business plan?

Well, a business plan is basically a written document that can accomplish a few things for your business. It's basically your business on paper. And the form that your business plan takes really depends on what your goal is for the business plan. So you may be writing this business plan to start a business. You may be writing the business plan to grow your business, or you may be writing your business plan to get financing. And depending on what your ultimate goal is for the plan, that's going to determine what form your plan takes.

So, you kind of alluded to this, but I always like to get kind of leverage, you know. Give me some good reasons why a small, I mean you talked about getting financing. I think everybody is familiar with that reason necessarily. But can you talk a little more about why, I mean I'm assuming you're, one of your principles would be that most every small businesses should have one.

Absolutely.

So, give me some reasons why. I'm a firm believer in that every small business needs some sort of plan. The reason is that you could work out your business on paper. If you start...

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