How to create a business plan in 4 hours – Part 3

This post is by Giles Ellis, an experienced business coach and Director at GECA Chartered Accountants. If you need help unlocking your business potential, then Giles can help.

Congratulations on getting this far and for completing Parts 1 and 2 of your Business Plan. So far you have done a lot. Your business has a clear Vision and Purpose and you know what you want to achieve and the Values you will use to do this.  You have articulated your Value Proposition that explains what you do for who and how you can help them. Finally, you have identified the Opportunities and Vulnerabilities to be addressed in the next 12 months.

In this final section, you will agree the Goals and Key Projects to achieve in the next 12 months and broken this down into 90 day actions.


11.Goals / Key Projects

Start a new page on your Business Plan – I like to do this on the back page so it is a true one page Business Plan.

Draw up five columns and title as follows:

  • One Year Goals
  • 90 Day Goals
  • Actions to Achieve 90 day Goals
  • Who
  • By When

Start with the One Year Goals and list the main goals you have for the rest of the financial year.  Some of these goals may be actions in order to achieve other goals – these can be grouped together under functional headings such as HR Issues, Marketing, etc.

They should address key opportunities and vulnerabilities that have been previously identified and should align to your purpose, vision and what you want to achieve.

Try and keep it to four goals or less, anymore and its likely one of them could have been grouped into another goal. Too many and you’ll struggle to effectively achieve them.


12.Actions To Achieve Goals

Now for each One Year Goal, on a separate piece of paper list all the actions that will be required to achieve that Goal.    These actions need to be specific, broad enough that there are multiple things necessary to achieve them. Think big picture – don’t get into small specific actions yet – this is what we do in the 90 day plan.


13.Establishing Your 90 Day Plan

Consider the One Year Goals – or goals within a larger goal – that need to be achieved in the next 90 days and list these alongside the One Year Goal in the 90 Day Goals. Now review the action list you compiled previously and list the actions that can be done within 90 days in the Actions column.

These actions need to be specific and a responsible person identified. Ideally no more than five actions per person (or you won’t achieve them) and they must be time bound. Include these details in the appropriate columns of your plan.

If there are parts of your business plan that need further work, add finalisation of your plan as a goal and set actions to achieve this.


Next Steps

And now your Business Plan should be complete! Next consider how to roll this out to your team, customers and suppliers to get the most benefit from your plan. Several clients of mine have publicised various aspects of their Business Plan such as Core Values on their websites and some have had them put up on the office walls.

Set a date in 90 day’s time to review your plan and put in place your next 90 day action plan.

Good luck creating your business plan and remember, if you need help to do this, contact Giles or his team on  0800 758 766 or sign up for our business planning service.