Realism vs. Optimism in the Business Plan
The most important function of a business plan is to create interest among investors so that they write a check. In achieving this goal, business plan writers are often challenged by determining the proper level of optimism in their plan. That is, they must create a compelling story to investors while maintaining credibility.
Optimism shows investors that a company is confident about the market opportunity, its ability to execute on the opportunity, etc. Over-optimism, however, leads investors to believe that the management team does not fully understand the opportunity or the tough road ahead. As such, business plans must be sure to limit over-optimism and show investors they are realistic and credible.
Realism, the opposite of over-optimism, should be used in business plans to portray sobriety and credibility to investors. Realism should manifest itself in management team bios that tell the actual accomplishments of managers, rather than fluff. It should manifest itself in credible market forecasts and sober assumptions of the company's growth.
While business plans must excite investors so they take action, if they are too optimistic, investors will discount their merit. Conversely, if they are too sober, investors may not feel they will get an adequate return on their investment. As such, business plans should present a compelling, optimistic picture, but continuously refer to hard facts and realistic assumptions to build credibility and genuine excitement.
GT Business Plans has developed over 200 business plans for clients that have collectively raised over $750 million in financing, launched numerous new product and service lines and gained competitive advantage and market share. GT Business Plans is the sister site of GT Venture Capital.
Before Getting A Franchise
Buying into a franchise is a great way to be part of a recognized brand with the benefit of lower advertising outlay. With many franchises to choose, here are some tips before you get involved with franchise:
Seven Key Qualities of Successful Entrepreneurs
A recent poll conducted by Forbes magazine shows that majority of its readers would prefer to become a billionaire rather than a Nobel peace prize winner, a great scientist or a famous athlete. There is no secret that most of the average people dream about getting rich albeit very few makes any real effort to become one.
The Fear Factor
I recently conducted a lil' survey asking my colleagues what were their biggest fears when thinking about starting a business or running their business. The following are the top three fears that resulted from my survey and some ways to combat them.
Use Your Youth To Your Advantage
You should wait until you're older and have more business and real-world experience before starting a business. You should just focus on school for now. Nobody will take you seriously at this age.
Be An Entrepreneurial Artist: Paint A Picture, then Commit It to Canvas
James had an original concept and he needed an investor. He had a compelling business idea that was a sure winner with the right financial backing. James painted a great picture of the vision he had for his business, but there was just one problem: James wanted to be a businessman, when he needed to be an artist.
The Business and Life You Want to Build
In the early days of my first consulting business, I knew I needed some sort of plan to give me the greatest chance at success. I took many a wrong step, yet in the end I managed to put a solid business together.
Determine Your Niche & Be Successful
What's a niche?
Face The Fear, Ladies
Okay, I'll begin by telling you that I've been divorced for about 5 years, have an amazing family and by anyone's standards, I have a wonderful life.
Herb Filled Pillows Make Over a Million Dollars
Lauren Rosenstadt was a single mom working at a herbcompany in Bethesda, Maryland. A herb (pronounced "erb") isa plant that has medicinal, savory, or aromic qualities. Oneday while at lunch with a friend whose daughter sufferedfrom insomnia, Lauren thought, "If I could fill a pillowwith herbs, that would be soothing and help my friend'sdaughter sleep."
Dream It, Create It, Become It! Design a Dream Board
Have you ever heard of "Dream Boards" or "Treasure Maps"? A Dream Board is a visual picture of the dreams you have for your life. Some of my clients also use this concept to visualize their businesses! It's their first business plan.One thing that is important to remember, though, is not to "get stuck" on your dream boards. We all have plans for our future, but it's important to watch the universe for signs of "its" plans for us. Otherwise, we might miss out on some great opportunities!
Self-Esteem and the Entrepreneur
Isn't it funny how people think that being self-employed is so cool? They think that you get to take lots of vacation time and spend all of the profits. What they don't realize is that you put in outrageous amounts of blood, sweat, and tears to get there. They don't know that you have to take the blame for every single thing that goes wrong. They don't know how many times you fell flat on your face before making it work. They think that you simply come up with a cute little idea over dinner one night and within a couple of months you're flying high living the rich man's life. The reality of the situation is very different. Statistics consistently show that most successful entrepreneurs failed a handful of times before finally finding that winning formula. It's during the failure years that you earn all of those future vacations and big fat salaries. Delayed gratification takes on a whole new level, doesn't it?
Hurricane Katrina, Death, and a Different Type of Entrepreneurship
I've seen terrible images today on the television and internet-bodies of the elderly and infants floating in attics, buildings collapsing, seals washing up in the middle of highways. All I can say is that our thoughts go out to those in New Orleans, Gulfport and surrounding areas in this sad time. We will keep the people who have been hurt or passed away and those who were close to them in our prayers today and in the weeks to come.
The Desire For Money, Do You Have Business Sense?
For those of us who grew up with parents who worked for businesses rather than owned them, the world of business can be quite a mystery. Even more so if we've dared to try to start one of our own. There is the factor of what type of business to start - a product or service business. There are the issues of doing a good market analysis, licensing the business, understanding the codes of law governing businesses, and determining just what type of business structure to choose - especially if the business will have employees. For example, should we start a sole proprietorship or a corporate business? It's a lot to work on, and it's not an overnight process to the road of success. But, the most crucial challenge to whether a business succeeds or fails lies deep within the realm of emotional versus financial intelligence.
An Entrepreneurs Biggest Cost
When launching a new product or company, an entrepreneur must consider their biggest cost - the opportunity cost. Opportunity cost is an economic term that is defined as the cost of passing up the next best alternative when making a decision. For instance, if an asset such as capital is used for one purpose, the opportunity cost is the value of the next best purpose for which the asset could have been used. In the entrepreneur's case, this asset typically includes the entrepreneur's time and money.
For Business SUCCESS... Listen To The Voices of Experience
Discover the pitfalls of owning your own business BEFORE... [you make a BAD choice!]
Raising Capital for Your Business ? How Long Does it Take?
Most companies vastly underestimate the time commitment necessary to successfully complete a financing. In actuality, a company seeking financing needs to budget between 500 to 1000 work-hours to the capital-raising process, spread out over a 6-9 month time period.
Increasing Business BIGTIME with a Successful Referral System
What I've discovered from most of my small business clients is that most would prefer to build their business through referrals rather than through direct mail, advertising in newspapers, radio, TV. However, most leave the referrals to a somewhat chaotic, unplanned approach. When they have a repeatable system of going after referrals their business growth suddenly explodes.
Franchises - A Proven Business System
Franchises offer the first time business owner a proven and successful business opportunity. If you are looking to start your own business for the first time, franchises provide you with the greatest opportunity for success. When you purchase a franchise from the "Franchisor", and become a "Franchisee", you are not only purchasing a business, but a complete business system.
Book Yourself Solid: The Simple Selling Process
As a service provider you may not want to think of yourself as a salesperson. You are in the business of helping others and you may not feel comfortable with the sales process. However, you need to let clients know that your service is available. Here are some ways to do so:
Business Startup Checklist
Use this comprehensive checklist to plan each step of your new business and transform your dream of entrepreneurship into reality. These steps may not necessarily be completed in the order listed, however, you can use them as a guideline for completing all of the necessary business startup tasks.
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