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Thread: Business plans & templates

  1. #1
    Platinum Member desA's Avatar
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    Business plans & templates

    It's time to begin committing my business concepts & ideas to paper. For an engineer, this is not always an easy task.

    I'm looking for information on setting up sound business plans, templates, spreadsheets, links.

    If anyone has useful information in this regard, I would be most grateful. Thanks so much for your kind contribution.
    In search of South African Technology Nuggets(R), for sale & trading in South East Asia.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    I know TFSA gets some organic search traffic on business plan templates. Most of the traffic goes to the rather aptly named business plan template thread, but there are also some useful links in the ice production business plan discussion.

    You did get me thinking about why I'm not a great fan of business plan templates, though. Perhaps it's because I've never used one, or maybe because I'm concerned that I'll just end up trying to fill out a form to generate a pretty result rather than really think through the issues. I've always mapped them out pretty much from scratch. To me it's about asking the right questions and working out the solutions, figuring out the relationships and finding the optimal points.

    Sure, I've looked at some of these templates, but more with a view to identifying key questions than to use them to generate my actual business plan.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    desA (21-Mar-10)

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    Platinum Member desA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave A View Post
    I know TFSA gets some organic search traffic on business plan templates. Most of the traffic goes to the rather aptly named business plan template thread, but there are also some useful links in the ice production business plan discussion.
    Excellent links there, Dave A. Thanks so much for those. The idea here was to basically look through the essential elements of a generic business plan & to make sure that they are adequately answered, as part of a holistic process, rather than as a shortcut, information-filling exercise.

    You did get me thinking about why I'm not a great fan of business plan templates, though. Perhaps it's because I've never used one, or maybe because I'm concerned that I'll just end up trying to fill out a form to generate a pretty result rather than really think through the issues. I've always mapped them out pretty much from scratch. To me it's about asking the right questions and working out the solutions, figuring out the relationships and finding the optimal points.

    Sure, I've looked at some of these templates, but more with a view to identifying key questions than to use them to generate my actual business plan.
    These are excellent points & I concur completely. Thank you.

    Perhaps you could help steer this thread into new areas by opening up your thoughts on the essential elements that should be in a generic business plan? We could then work these all the way through towards a final product.

    I'd like to use this business plan as a foundation document for attracting investors into a joint-venture business to be established in SA, not for direct bank loans. So, in this sense, it also needs to embody a marketing bias/spin.

    This could be an incredibly useful exercise - something both informative & productive for the TFSA readership. I know that I would welcome the process of discovery, as I'm also guilty of having been one of the 'fly-by-the-seat-of-pants' business-persons in past times.

    I want to do it correctly, this time.
    In search of South African Technology Nuggets(R), for sale & trading in South East Asia.

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    Diamond Member wynn's Avatar
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    You probably need a 'mind map' more than a template, you know the circle in the middle with other ideas and needs spiderwebbing outwards and so on?

    see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mind_map
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    desA (24-Mar-10)

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    Platinum Member desA's Avatar
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    Thanks wynn. An interesting approach. Helps to make sure that all bases have been covered.

    Good thought.
    In search of South African Technology Nuggets(R), for sale & trading in South East Asia.

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