how to write a business plan? step by step guide + templates
You. May ask why, do I need a business plan why can't I just launched. My business and get to market the. Importance, of a business plan cannot, be understated, first. You have to define your business and how you're going to compete you. Need to understand, the market and where, is your business going to occupy, its space in that, market, versus, your competitors, you'll. Need to clearly, define your product and why, your customers should be interested, in it, once. You've defined that product, have, a good, understanding of how you're going to take it to market after. You've, decided how you're going to take a product to market you need to understand, and articulate, how you're going to operate that business and, create, an operating, plan to, support those operations. Now. That means you're going to have people and you'll, need a plan for managing your people and the resources, that come along with them you'll. Also need to define the administrative, responsibilities. And how you're going to fulfill them. Once. You've got all that down you'll, need to project your financial, results and create a clear, financial, plan that, helps you understand, how should, the business perform. Over time. Now. With all of that done you'll, need to think through what are some of the major pitfalls that you could face as you launch your business and make, sure you incorporate those, into your plan, now. Depending on the type of business you're running not. All of these elements will be relevant, however, these, are the major components, of the business plan and why, you need to put them in place. The. First step in writing your business plan is articulating. The problem, that you solve is this. A problem that people are willing to pay you to, fix, you'll. Need to define who has the problem is it, companies, is it individuals. Spell. Out what your typical customer, looks, like, then. Think through how big is this problem how, does it show up for your customers, is it, a question of things are expensive, and they have a cost problem do. They have a time problem is it, a quality issue with the products that they're turning out and you can help them improve that, quality, when. You write this problem statement, you should be able to take it to your target customers, and they, should read it and say I have, that problem, please, come, fix it and that's where the demand for your product or service, is going to come from. As, you're. Writing your business plan having. A clear understanding of, the size of the market is going, to help you understand, how attractive. Is the business you're trying to get into, does. The market consist of businesses, or is, it consumers, how, many people, are in your addressable, market. Articulate. How does the market organize, itself, is it, organized, by product, by segment, by, problem. Is it organized by geography. Spell. Out some of the common, characteristics, of the customers, in that market, now. How big is the addressable, portion, of the profit, pool that. Profit, pool is the dollars, that are available in that market, and how, much of it can the problem that you solve address. Now. Some ways that you can size the market are things like looking, at market research gathering. Analyst, reports, even, looking at what some of your competitors are, doing and how, they've reported, the size of the market a, good. Market, sizing, will tell you what you need to do to, scale, your business it will, also help you understand, is this, an attractive enough, market, for me to make a return you're. Going to be investing as you build this business you. Need to know how, much market, is out there that you're going to be able to capture, now. Obviously, bigger markets, are exciting, however, niche, markets, can be just, as lucrative, so. As you're running your business plan.
Articulate. What the market looks like and how, much of it you think you can capture. Your. Business plan needs to clearly, define, your product. Explain. The product in simple. Non-technical. Terms, avoid. Buzzwords. And also. Assume, your audience, is completely, unfamiliar. With your product. Describe. How that product, solves, a problem and talk, about the benefits in a very concrete way, so. As you're writing your business plan make, sure your product description, is clear and simple, and articulates. Concrete. Benefits, for your customer. Your. Business plan has to spell out your revenue. Model for, your product or service, this, is a huge, determinant of how successful, your business is, going to be how. Are you going to make money at this is it, going to be a one-time, charge or are, there recurring, or subscription, charges for your product are there. Going to be cross-sell. Or upsell, opportunities. Are, you going to sell add-ons, that complement. The product or service. How. Are similar products, priced in the market, what are your competitors, do what's their revenue, model if you're looking for ideas. Also. Ask what, are your customers willing to pay conduct. Some pricing, market research or look, at competitive offerings, and how they're priced then. Analyze, the value of your product and the value it creates, and price, as a portion, of that don't leave value, on the table and your, choice of a revenue model is going to determine how, much of that value, you're going to capture so. When you articulate, your revenue, model make sure you think through what's, the value you're, delivering and price, accordingly. Once. You've described, the market you're going to compete in and the, way your product solves, that problem you. Need to do a SWOT analysis, and describe, why you're going to win in that market, it's not good enough to just have a product, you, need to understand, how you stack, up versus. Your competitors and what, your competitive, advantage, is going to be you'll. Conduct a SWOT analysis. Strengths. Weaknesses. Opportunities and. Threats, those. Are going to highlight implications. For how you're going to approach the market and compete there so. When you conduct your SWOT analysis, don't, just leave it at doing the analysis, think, through the implications of. Those strengths, and weaknesses. And the threats and opportunities you face and turn. Those into a plan, for how you're going to compete effectively.
Your. Business plan needs to spell out the major customer, and market, trends that you're going to face and more importantly, how, you're going to react to those trends, what. Are the major trends, do they help you or do they hurt you is the. Market growing is it flat is it shrinking is the. Market fragmented. Or is it consolidated. And how. Are people behaving, in that market, are you seeing acquisitions. Are you seeing divestitures. Who. Makes the buying decisions, from a customer, standpoint and are, those patterns changing. At all, think. Through what other products and services do, your customers want, and need are there emerging. Trends, where customers, are asking for new things, some. Of the sources for this information, are things like market, research conducting. Focus groups doing. Some competitive, analysis, for. Your business plan articulate. What the major trends, are and the actions, you're going to take either to offset, the negative trends or take, advantage of the positive ones. Your. Business plan should go into great detail in, terms of how your product or service ranks, versus your competitors now. Be honest, about your standing, versus your competitors I like. To create what I call a moon chart and that's, where you lay out all of your competitors and then articulate how you stack, up versus. Them one. Thing you should never say in a business plan is we have no competitors, that's, not believable and it's risky because, it's pointing out that you have a blind spot in terms of the market and where you stand now when, you create this moon chart what you're going to do is list all of the competitors, across the top and then, down the side you're, going to list out all the, performance, dimensions, and how you stack, up and within. Each square on that matrix. You're going to spell out whether you're the best the, worst or somewhere, in between and again, that's compared, to your competitors offerings. This. Document, is going to help you pitch, your, idea and how you're going to position yourself. With your customers. So. When you look at your business spell. Out who those competitors, are lay. Out the evaluation. Dimensions, and then, compare, yourself, on each dimension versus. Those competitors, then. At the end of that section of your business plan spell. Out the implications, of that positioning, in terms of how you're going to pitch your, product or your service to. Your customers. Your. Business plan has to spell out what the threats are to your product and one of the biggest threats you'll face is substitute. Products. What. Can replace, your product what can solve the customers problem, just, as easily and do, it cheaper. What. Substitutes, are competing, for the same dollars, that you are and remember, it may not be a direct competitor to, you be. Able to articulate, what those substitutes, are and why your customer, is going to choose your product versus, that substitute, so, when you spell out your business plan lay, out what those competitive, offerings, are and what those substitutes. Are and more. Importantly, what, you're going to do to make sure the customer, chooses your product, versus, the substitute. Your. Business plan has to spell out your go-to-market, strategy both. In terms of building awareness for your product or service as well, as how you're going to deliver it how. Are you going to reach your customers, what are the channels you're going to use again. To market, to them as well as to deliver to them are going, to go direct, are you going to go through distribution, how. Are you going to build awareness for your product or service will. It be through partnership. Or licensing. Understand. The economics, of each of those channels so.
As You're writing your business plan make, sure you articulate. Both types, of channels, and understand. The economics. Involved in each one. Your. Business plan needs to spell out the value, proposition, of your product, or your service what. Are the tangible benefits, that your customer, is going to get from, using your product, are there, things like cost, or time or quality. And you, need to quantify these things to the extent, that you can, perhaps. You include testimonials. In the business plan or test. Results, if you. Can't quantify it because, you're selling softer, benefits, there's, an approach that I call the what, do you have to believe approach for quantifying it so. You need to articulate, your value, proposition for your product or service, and to, the extent you can quantify. It in terms of the benefits your customers is going to receive. Your. Business plan needs to clearly spell out the points of differentiation, for your product or service, compared, to your competitors and those, points of differentiation need, to be things that your customer, cares about now. The differences, need to be substantial. Relative, to competition, by, saying you're one to two percent faster, than your competitors, that, won't get a customer's, attention, 20, percent faster now you have their attention. Second. They don't just have to be substantive. Differences, that to be meaningful, if your customer, cares about cost but, not at all about speed it doesn't matter if you're twenty percent faster, so. Make sure as you're articulating. These points of differentiation you, look at substantive. Differences, as well, as meaningful, ones, now. Knowing, how you're differentiated. Is going to help you know where to invest your, time and money, because, this is a planning, exercise and you're, going to focus on those differentiating. Factors, and where, to compete or not, compete, in the marketplace, this. Is the part of your business plan that's going to keep your strategy, focused, and staying. On strategy. Is going to make you more effective and more competitive, it'll. Prevent you from chasing, work, you shouldn't pursue it'll. Prevent you from investing. In things that are going to be diluted that your customers, won't care about so. As you articulate, your business, plan make, sure you think through those points of differentiation that, your customers, care about and that you have a meaningful. Performance advantage. On versus. Your competitors and by, spelling those out clearly you're, going to make sure that you focus, on strategy, and you. Have a more competitive offering. Just. Because you've built a business it doesn't mean it's safe and in, your business plan you should articulate, how, you're going to protect what, you've built how. Are you going to protect, another, company, from taking, your customers. Maybe. You look at things like proprietary. Rights that you have to the product or service, you. May look at things like patents. Or copyrights. Do. You have trade, secrets that nobody can replicate, perhaps. You put in place some non-compete. Agreements, or other proprietary, knowledge. And skills that's, going to keep your business safe from, competitors, taking, your customers, now. Recognize, a lot of people want to go down the patent or copyright path. However, that's, costly, and it takes a lot of time. Additionally. Just because you have a patent, or a copyright, it doesn't, mean it can't be defeated there. Are companies out there that will infringe, upon your patents, there, are companies who will sue you in court and while, you may ultimately win, the case it's, gonna cost you a lot of time and money to defend it so just, be aware of the, pros, and cons of each of these defensive, mechanisms. Also. Don't, underestimate, speed. And size as defense, mechanisms, for protecting your market, in your. Business, plan lay, out what mechanisms, you're going to use to protect your business from the threats you're invariably, going to face. Your. Business plan has to lay out your product, development, roadmap that roadmap, should, spell out what the major phases are in product, development as well, as the timelines, that go along with it, describe. What's in your Minimum, Viable Product. The first product, that you put in the market what, are the features you're going to release then.
Discuss, What the next level of prototypes, are going to be as well, as when that final, product is going to be available and released into the market, the. Business plan should also describe, your approach to testing, research. And development, and what, that future product, roadmap, will be. Explain, the key risks, in your product development lifecycle and, how. Are you going to mitigate, or account for those risks, when. You layout your product, development roadmap lay. Out those features, and functions, at each stage, of development and articulate. What the gates are for, you to build that next level of functionality. The. Next section of your business plan needs the layout product, or service, delivery how, are you going to get your product, in the hands of your customers if. It's a product, who's going to ship it are you going to ship it the rack through the post office, or UPS, or Federal. Express are. You going to sell your product through retail, if it's. A service are you going to go to the customer, or are you going to deliver your service remotely. Or, you going to have the customer come to you to be serviced and then. Once you've laid out how you're going to get that product and service to them explain. The operational. Hurdles, and challenges you'll. Face as well. As how, you're going to get over them make, sure you lay out the, channels, you're going to use to deliver, your product or service, and how, you're going to overcome, the challenges, you're going to face. A. Brand. Is a promise and, you should. Spell out what, you want that promise to be also, lay out why are your customers, going to care why is that promise, important, to them, then. How, are you going to advertise and, promote your, product or service in a manner that's consistent with. And builds. That brand how. Are you going to communicate with your customers will. It be online. Advertising. Public, relations. Perhaps, it's personal, selling or printed, materials, are there, other promotional, opportunities, you're going to take advantage of spell. These things out in the branding section of the business plan, then. How are you going to emphasize, your points of differentiation, are. You going to point out the problem, you solve and why you're better than anyone, else at solving it so, in your business plan spell, out what the promise is that you're making to your customers, why.
They'll Care and how, you're going to get that message out into the market. Pricing. Is one of the most critical decisions you're going to have to make and your, business, plan needs to spell out your pricing, model as clearly, as possible, you. Need to understand, even, a 1%, differential. On pricing, can have a disproportionate. Impact on your total profitability. Let's. Assume your business has a 10%. Profit margin, if you. Raise prices by just 1%, on the top line for revenue, you've, increased, your profitability, by 10%. That. 1% will go from your revenue line all the way to the bottom and your, pricing, will drive margin, from 10% to 11. Pricing. Is huge, do not under, invest, in thinking. About it so. How do you come up with your pricing, benchmark. Some of your competitors, look, at their pricing, model as well, as their price points, and use. Those price points as anchors, for pricing, your own service, also. Determine, your pricing model and the rationale, behind it, are you. Going to sell on a cost-plus. Basis, are, you going to sell on a value, basis, is it, going to be a one-time, fee or ongoing, fees or, some, combination thereof. Laying. Out this model, is critical, because you're going to have to message it to the market as well. As build the model into your ultimate, financial model, as part of your business plan. In, the. Sales section of your business plan you have to spell out how are you going to sell your product, or service, will. You use a sales force or will you just go direct, consumer, maybe from your website if you're. Using a sales force what's, the sales cycle going to look like how long will it be what's. The conversion rate, from prospect, to customer, and make sure in the business plan if possible. Have supporting, evidence for, that how. Are you going to compensate your sales force will it be a base salary we, pay them a commission is it going to be a combination, of the two because. That's going to drive your sales forces behavior, and in. The sales section how are you going to conduct, contracting. Will, you have long-term contracts. Will. You have certain payment, terms that you're going to expect what. Type of salespeople do, you need and how, are you going to compensate them, and having. That clarity in your business, plan is going, to make it clearer, how, those people will perform as well as how, it will show up in the financial, performance of, your business. Another. Operational. Area to cover in your business plan is how are you going to support your, product, or service. Just, because you sell it doesn't, mean you're done what's. It going to take to deliver aftercare. To handle returns, to. Deliver. Customer, service when your customers, have questions, how, are you going to staff, that, service, are, you going to insource, it and have people within, your organization who. Do it or are you going to outsource, it to another organization or are, you going to make it self-help, what. Are the expectations. That your customers, are going to have for, this support how. Many calls do you expect, how many incidents, are you going to handle what's. The return rate on your product going to be and what. Expertise. Is going to be required, to handle, some of these issues you need, to spell out all of these operational, components, in your business plan because. If you don't think, about them you're going to have operational, challenges down the road the. Lesson, here is think, about how you're going to support your business before, you make any operational. Changes, and this, is exactly, what you'll be doing as you, write, this section, of your business plan.
Your. Business plan needs to lay out your people, plan and that, people plan needs to be built from the bottom up you need to look at the demand factors, that are going to drive how, many people you need what. Job families, do you need and where, will you hire them from do, you need operational. Folks do you need finance, HR, IT. Will. They be employees, or will they be contractors. How, are you going to use vendors, to augment your internal personnel. Strategy, you. Have to think through what are the ramped up times and the training requirements, for somebody just, because you say you need someone, doesn't, mean they're going to be effective, in the role on the day you hire them you, need to work backward, and say, it's gonna take us three to six months to find this person and after, we have them it's gonna take two months to train them this, all needs to be part of your people plan how. Are you going to staff, as you grow your business and what's going to drive that staffing growth, so. If you take on new customers how, many new customers do, you have to have before you hire an incremental, person and when. Do you achieve those scale benefits, when, is that hiring going, to flatten out while the business continues to grow, you'll. Also need to lay out how much do these people cost what's, the turnover, going to be how much are the benefits, you're going to pay them all these. Numbers, are going to feed into your financial, plan and by. Building your people plan based on the demand factors, as your business grows and laying. Out that plan on a quarterly, basis, you're going to be able to more accurately predict. What your financials, will look like so, as you lay out your business, plan think, through all the different job families, and what's going to drive their growth how. Much they're going to cost you, and what the pace of hiring will be. A, major. Component, of your operating, portion, of your business plan is how you're going to manage production. Where. Are you going to make your product, are you going to insource or outsource. But, suppliers, are you're going to use will, you own or, lease the equipment. You'll. Also need to discuss how are you going to meet demand, manage, facility, utilization. And deal, with peak, or slack, periods, of demand. Once. You've built your operating, plan ask do. Your operations. Match, your product strategy, and it's, something you should think through in this, section of your business plan. For. Your business as you write your business plan think, through what your major inputs. Are to make in your product, and then, who, are the suppliers do.
You Have backups, for those suppliers do, you have a diversity, of sources to mitigate, supplier, risk, how. Are you going to manage the costs, of the things you buy from your suppliers, do. You intend have long term contracts, will, you conduct a scheduled, bid will. You have any partners joint, ventures alliances. For key components. Supplier. Risk, is a huge, risk for your business, if a. Major supplier, goes down or decides, to renegotiate. Rates what's. Your backup plan what. Financial risks, do you face from, supplier concentration. And how. Are you going to mitigate, those risks. What. Operational. Risks do you face by in sourcing, things that, you're not great, at things, that aren't your core competency. What. Reputation risks. Do you face in your supplier strategy, if you, partner, with someone or you buy a lot, of product from a supplier and they, do something, wrong what's, the risk to your business, think. Through some of the large companies who have partnered with famous. Athletes, or movie, stars and that, athlete, or star does something, that isn't so great and look. At the risk that that company, who sponsored, them faces, these. Are all risks. That you should be articulating. In the supplier section, of your business plan so. Understand, where you're going to get your product, what. The concentration. Risks, are and how. You're going to mitigate, it to have a clear, and compelling, piece, of this operating, plan. As. You. Build your business especially. If you're seeking outside investment, the, leadership, team is going to be something people will evaluate, very, closely. Some. Investors, say they'd rather invest, in a great, management, team with an okay idea than. In an okay management, team with a great idea, the, leadership team matters, a lot and this, is your opportunity to show people how, great that team is in this. Section of the business plan define. Who the executive, team is and draw, the organization. Chart who, reports, to who put. In the blank boxes, with job descriptions, for people you'll hire in the future, you. Should include brief, bios of each leader, and include. Their relevant, experience. That shows how they're going to contribute to the team link. Their past experiences. And accomplishments to, the role they'll be playing in this organization. You. Should also describe, the ownership, structure, of the company including. Decision-making, authority. You. May be smart but it's even smarter. To surround yourself with other smart, people this. Is the role of advisers for your business, and you should spell out who those advisers, are within, your business plan there. Are several types, of advisers, you can pursue there's. An advisory, board an advisory. Board typically, gets brought together during, the earlier, stages, of your business they. Can help you get customers, investors, they, can help you build out your team and they. May play an ongoing role, as your, organization, grows, there's.
A Board of directors, these, people are formally, elected, and have legal, responsibilities. They're. Typically not needed, until you receive outside, investment. And you have shareholders. The. Board serves as experts, on special topics they'll, be responsible for compensating, management, and holding. Management, accountable, to, shareholders, other. Advisers. You can have our specialists. They're brought in to advise on a specific. Topic they're. Not usually involved, on an ongoing basis. And they can be paid as consultants, or you can pay them with equity, and your. Board should change, as the business grows and as the needs of the business evolve, so. Think through your, advisory, needs for your business, identify who those people are, and what, the structure of those, advisory, boards will be. Your. Business plan needs to, include a perspective, on how you're going to compensate management. There, are various ways that you can compensate, your leadership team you can give them cash bonus. Or equity. And there. Are a variety of forms of equity that you can issue things, like stock or options, I highly. Suggest you, get some legal assistance from somebody who has done this type of agreement before, when. You are awarding. Equity that equity needs to vest over time even, for the founders, this, way if a founder quits they don't walk away with a big chunk of equity just for having a good idea. Cash. Is also tight when you first start your business so equity, tends to be the preferred way to compensate management. But, you have to realize that equity, is the most expensive, form of financing, and give it out wisely this, is why it's so important, to spell this out in your business plan, deferred. Cash or a bonus is another option, for compensating. Management, if your, executives, don't need cash right now and doing. So it's cheaper than equity, but, it preserves, the cash you need to start up the business no. Matter what put. Employment, agreements in place that, specifically. Spell out compensation, because. When your business plan is complete, and you, think about taking it in front of investors the, way you're compensating, management, is going to have an impact, on the return those investors, might get. These. Can be very complex, transactions. And you do need legal and financial assistance. As you set us up but, it's a section of your business plan that has to be completed, especially. If you're going to seek outside investment. When. You run a business there, are a lot of administrative. Matters you're going to have to handle these, are non-negotiable. Many, of them are regulatory.
Requirements. Which. Firms are you going to use for your finance, HR, legal. Intellectual. Property, who's. Going to represent you, and who. On your team is going to manage administrative. Matters for your company, there. Are some key questions you, need to be able to answer as you build your business plan are all, your licenses, and business, filings complete, and accurate are, you. Sufficiently, insured, are you. Compliant, with all laws like tax, law employment. Law safety. Law if you're doing some manufacturing, is your. Business legally, protected. Do, you have the right legal structure, intellectual. Property, and copyright, protections, are your. Contract solid, and are. Your finances, correct, are you, issuing 1099s. And w-2s. And filing. Your taxes, appropriately. These. Aren't fun things to deal with however, they're critical, especially if, you get them wrong so. Spend some time find. Some external, service, providers, who can help you with this and make, sure you have these things buttoned, up before. You launch your business. A. Major. Component of your business plan is your, financial plan and the, first step in building that financial, plan is documenting. Your assumptions, what. Are you going to assume and what's. The grounding, for those assumptions, maybe. You look at comparables. Market, research or basic, estimates, to figure out what that ingoing, assumption, is you'll. Also need to lay out what the best case and worst case, scenario, is for each assumption, because, they'll drive different, financial performance. Then. Explain, how large of an impact, each assumption, has on your, overall financial performance. By. Having your assumptions, clearly, articulated. You can track your financial, performance and, revisit. Those assumptions over, time to, make sure your forecasts. Are as accurate as possible. Your. Financial, forecast, is the heart of your business plan without. A good forecast, you don't know if you even have a viable business or what, financial results, you can expect. When. You build your financial, forecasts, build them from the bottom up and build, them I month, based on unit, drivers, so, how, many courses are you going to sell how many widgets are you going to produce. Understand. How those drive the financial, performance, you'll. Need to build a full profit, and loss statement, with all line, items accounted, for and use, the assumptions, you've already created, to, drive that financial, forecast, you'll. Forecast, your revenues your, costs, how much cash you'll have what, your balance sheet and income statement look, like and if, you don't know how to do this seek, professional help. From a financial firm when. You build your forecasts, you're going to want to have several cases build. A worse case where, you have accelerated. And increased, costs and delayed. Or lower than expected revenue. Build. An expected, case which should be conservative, and build. A best case which is your costs are as expected, and you have accelerated, revenue, by. Looking, at that complete picture you'll. Understand, what, happens if things don't go well and what, happens if things go great. Invest. The time in, building, forecasts. That are as accurate as you possibly, can, because. They're, going to tell you what your business will look like in the future and help, you plan accordingly. It. Takes money to run a business and there, are three critical numbers you'll have to know how. Much capital do you have on hand, what's. Your burn rate and, how, much runway, do you have, capital.
On Hand is how much cash do you have in the bank your. Burn rate is how much money are you spending every. Month to pay your staff to run your business and then. Runway, is if, you look at how much cash you have on hand and assume, no more money comes in how. Long do you have before you run out of money. Obviously. The longer the runway is the safer, your businesses. You'll. Also need to create a perspective, on when you'll hit cash flow breakeven, which. Is when, is the business, generating. Enough, money enough profit, to pay, the costs of running that business every month and your. Investors, are going to want to know at what point are you going to hit cash flow breakeven because. That's when you don't need any more money invested. Your. Business plan should also spell out where you plan on getting your capital, from will. It be from the owners loans. Friends. And family will. You seek outside investors. Or grants, will, you work with partners, who will give you money. Also. What are you going to use the capital for by, the way the only good, uses, of capital in the early years of running your business are, things that drive sales, marketing. Sales, force or product, development if you're, spending money on anything other than those items, your, investors, are going to question it so. As you're thinking about, your business be very clear, about how much money you're going to need to, hit the point where the business is self-sustaining. Every. Business faces financial, risks and you should lay out in your business plan what those risks are and what, you're going to do if they come to pass some. Of the risks you might face what. Happens if you lose funding what. Happens if you don't get that loan or the investment, you are counting on what. If you lose a big customer or the economy turns, south what. If that marketing, campaign you thought was gonna be huge turns, out to not work, what. Happens if you get sued for intellectual, property or, a major competitor. Emerges, all. Of these are bad things that could happen to your business but. If you think about them now and plan, for them you can put contingency. Plans in place, you. Could do things like cut, expenses, or lay, off staff you. Might seek additional loans or additional investment, or the founders might put more money in you. Could drop prices market. More offer retention. Discounts, for some of your customers, you. May even say we would sell out to a competitor, or partner, with another firm, having. These contingency. Plans in place enables. You to react, more quickly, so. Think through what the risks your organization. Faces. Are and put, them in your business plan along, with the contingency, plans to go along with it. As you. Build your business make. Sure you're clear on whether it's a lifestyle, business or, if you're looking to exit, because. It has huge implications for, how you're going to fund it if your. Business is built to exit, your investors, will want to know how are you going to exit will, it be by acquisition and who, might buy your company will. It be a sale just to other owners now. If you say we're gonna do an IPO, it sounds, a little bit silly especially. In the early stages of running a business so. Be practical. About saying what your exit, might be if, it's, a lifestyle, business just. Understand, that you'll get fewer people who are willing to invest in it, when. You lay out your exit, plan expect. An ROI, your. Investors, will what's, the return on the investment that, they're going to get what's. The timing they should expect it on your, investors, will want their money back and then some so. Your business case needs to spell out is it going to be a lifestyle, business for you where you're not seeing external, investment, and you're just looking to build something to, give you personal income or is, it something where your investors, can expect a return. You.