Business Plan, why write one?
I’ve heard this a lot recently: “Business plans don’t matter”. Matter to whom? The only person it should matter to is YOU.
Yes. It is correct that likely no one, other than your most loyal colleagues and advisors will actually read the whole thing. It is certainly not something you send to an angel or VC (normally).
But it is important on a higher level. You write this so that it can be your internal compass.
When things start to change, new people come onto your team, with new ideas, you have this to look back on. As a barometer, or simply a way to see how much myself and the family here at BlackBird has grown from once was. It’s history.
Does a truly brilliant author write a book wondering who will read it?
He writes it, quite simply because he can and because he wants to. If someone wants to give it a read, then cheers to them.
There was a time when I came to one of my trusted senior colleagues, and asked him if my idea was a fundable entity. Before I could explain the idea, he said no; you don’t have a business plan.
That night, I began working on one. Using references and the whole nine yards. I wanted to be MBA precise.
I tried to stay on the course, but a business plan is long and “I was born a ramblin’ man” so it turned into something that could pass for a business plan, but it was really the philosophy and thoughts that would become my first incorporated business.
It was like the essay, or outline that would determine a lot of things.
Especially in hindsight. Looking back at it 3 years later. It was the direct reflection of the concepts and ideas that were in my head at the time. I realize now that he asked me to write it to see if conviction was truly there, and I wasn’t just picking up on some market trends or tech gossip.
Remember, there are two types of entrepreneurs.
The first one has no conviction. No clear, genuine vision if I’m being harsh.
They chase the hot word. AI or Blockchain. Whatever the hot vertical is that year. These are the same people that will tell you not to waste your time on a business plan, or a business reflection (let’s call it that from now on).
Because they have no conviction, they need the immediate and direct approval of others. A process elegantly called ‘customer validation’. Now don’t get me wrong, you need to validate, talk, engage with your potential customers, but as Steve Jobs once said; “the customer doesn’t know what they want until you show it to them.” As a customer of many things, I agree.
The second type of entrepreneur has conviction. Beyond the hot topic or the trendy gossip. The second type of entrepreneur may not even know what a business plan is, but in some shape or form, will take the time to write down, or scribble down internal thoughts, so that one can reflect, read back, question, ponder, think.
They will do this because this is not a fleeting, superficial notion. The problem they are trying to solve is real to THEM. Wether it is a problem to others, well that IS an assumption that needs validation.
Go write things down, if only for yourself. It is easy to go to a networking event and write down a clever idea. It takes true conviction to execute on it.
If you want a road named after you, you better pave that road yourself. Nobody is going help you. They might recommend what cement to use, but at the end of the day, they won’t even mention your road until they are driving on it.
Even then, they will say something like “Man, what idiot decided to build a road here”.
Build it for yourself. Ask questions later.
’Tis my own personal thoughts that I have to offer to you at this moment.