3 Tips for Entrepreneurs Planning a Startup

Written by Theresa Shafer. Posted in Consulting Business, Startup CEO: Question of the Day, Startups

How do you plan when you are in a small software startup? Big company planning models are not just overkill, they are not appropriate for small firms. Startups need a lightweight planning and development model to thread the narrows between “just do it” and “let’s study the problem a little longer.”

We use an one-page planning model. The one-page business plan is different from traditional models. It’s an ACTION plan. Traditional models are out of date by the time they are finished! That’s one reason why they don’t work. They are also very general, trying to fit everyone, as a result are never really useful.

But a one-page model is not a vehicle for raising money or soliciting investment – that requires a different approach. This is an operating plan. The important thing here is the process of planning, developing a better understanding of the business and the options available.

  • Define and understand yourself, your competencies, your product, and your customer.
  • Identify your immediate, mid-term, and long term goals as well as an action plan to reach them
  • Clarify and clearly state your business model and path to revenue

Here’s 3 tips to make it usable.

  1. Keep it simple and usable.
  2. Stick to one page.
  3. Use bullets to jot down ideas. It is not about writing volumes.

Our Idea to Revenue workbook has individual worksheets. Each key concept is presented in a tight, one-page question-and-answer format. We also guide you through the process in the Idea to Revenue Workshop.

Trackback from your site.

Comments (1)

  • SKMurphy » Planning in a Bootstrapped Startup: a Model from Will Kamishlian

    |

    [...] Adapting von Moltke’s observation that “No battle plan ever survives contact with the enemy” for a startup you might say that no startup’s product or operating plan survives contact with the market, either in the form of customers or competition. But prior preparation enables quick response and will likely allow you to avoid unnecessary expense and some mistakes. His suggestion for a journal format is also a good one, and one of the reasons why we believe that a wiki page makes a nice medium for your operating plan. I like Mr. Kamishlians’ comments a lot–although I have never met or corresponded with him–they contain a succinct problem statement and guidance that corresponds to our prescription for an appropriate level of planning in a software startup. [...]

    Reply

Leave a comment

Quick Links

Bootstrappers Breakfast Link Startup Stages Clients In the News Upcoming Events Office Hours Button