Bus and Motor Coach Library

A Business Plan - a Basis for Success & Profitability...

Author – Brian Niddery (2002)

As we approach the end of one year and the beginning of the next, it is time to begin that process of reviewing where your company is, and where your company should be heading.  In short we are talking about a "Business Plan". 

A Business Plan acts like a road map, and if properly drawn up provides a clear and concise set of directions to follow and objectives to be met.  A proper business plan makes the managing of a company a less difficult matter, and usually results in a greater measure of success, and dare we say – a more profitable one! 
We want to draw your attention to the important benefits of a written business plan.  It would take far more space that this article allows to describe the entire process, however, it is such an important element in a successful enterprise that we need to touch on some of its benefits and demonstrate why it should become a high priority in your organization.  

A business plan is subject to three basic "Givens".  The first given is that you probably know your business better than anybody else - and that includes accountants, bookkeepers, your banker, your customers and your suppliers.  As owner and sometimes chief bottle-washer, you are probably the only one that is really capable of writing a viable and effective business plan. 
The second given is that much of the information that goes into a business plan is probably already in your head.  The problem is that most of this valuable information simply rolls around up there without a starting point or an ending point.  It gets mixed up with all sorts of mundane day-to-day stuff.  The really important information usually ends up on the back burner of one's brain, and one seldom has the opportunity to sort it all out.

The third given is that you are a very busy person!  The cold hard truth is that you will never have the time to invest in developing a business plan - unless you absolutely force yourself to do it!  It must become your highest priority, and thereby become the single most important part of your job.  Otherwise, it will not happen.

The key to any business plan is that it must be a written plan.  By having to write a plan, you tend to deal with only the important stuff - separate the chaff from the wheat so to speak.  Verbalized or mental plans are quite useless!  By writing a plan down on paper, it forces you to think through every individual point.  It causes you to review each point, and results in setting priorities and focusing your thoughts into a set of attainable goals and objectives.  It requires that you review your company's performance over the last year.  It permits an analysis of your current activities, to determine what you are doing right and what you could be doing better.

A business plan necessitates a review of all aspects of your operation, to ensure that all functions are being handled in a most efficient and satisfactory manner.  It will ensure that each person in your employ has a proper workload and bundle of responsibilities, and that operating procedures and policies are being handled correctly. 

A business plan enables a more detailed and intimate understanding of your operation; and gives it a certain transparency that allows you to take a more objective look at your organization.  It also acts as a catalyst for new ideas, and ways and means to make your organization more efficient, often resulting in cost savings that accrue directly to your bottom line.