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Chapter 1.2. A Model for Strategic Planning, Analyzing Cases and Decison Making

Chapter 1.3 Forest & Forest Case

Chapter 2. Influencing / Persuading

Chapter 3. Negotiating / Conflict Resolution

Chapter 4. Networking / Self Marketing

Chapter 5. Entrepreneuring / Venturing

Chapter 6. Business Plan Outline

Chapter 7. HBS Case Method Deprives Students of An Authentic Learning Experience

Chapter 8. Improving Your Ability to Recognize Business Opportunities

Chapter 9. Why Business Schools Need to Know What MBAs Want to Learn and How to Find Out

Chapter 10. What do MBAs Want and What Do They Get?

Chapter 11. Applying Services Marketing Concepts to the Administration of A Business School

Chapter 12. A Model of the Business School as A Developer of Achievers

Chapter 13. Obtaining More Options in Your 401(k) or 403 (b) Retirement Plan

Chapter 14. Breathe Slowly - Reduce Your Blood Pressure

Chapter 15. The Body Mass Index (BMI) Is Wrong

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Chapter 6. Business Plan Outline (BPO)


As an entrepreneur, you must prepare a business plan to: evaluate the feasibility of your enterprise, develop a document to help you acquire needed resources and start you toward the sound planning that will be part of your management style. The time and effort that you invest in developing a complete and detailed plan will be regained many times over in future business success.

I. Summary (selected highlights) of the plan. 

 A. Purpose of the plan, for example: to attract investors and/or to evaluate feasibility and/or to provide an operating plan.

 B. What is your product or service? From the buyer's perspective, in what ways is it different from and better than competing products?

 C. Who will buy the product or service? How much do they buy of your type of product? How much do you expect to sell them?

 D. The environment: competition, trends in relevant external factors, such as the economy, regulation and technology.

 E. Public relations campaign for the new venture.

 F. Marketing strategy: personal selling, advertising, sales promotion, direct marketing, pricing, service and warrantee policies.

 G. Plan of operation and qualifications of the management team.

 H. Capital requirements at start-up and who the providers will be.

 I. Financial projections for the next three years.

II. The product and/or service you are offering to buyers. 

 A. What are the features of your offer? Describe your offer in detail: product, service(s), price, quality, capabilities, durability, taste, flavor, color, variety, prestige, convenience.

 B. What benefits does your offer provide to buyers? Why will buyers prefer your product to competing products? How strongly will they prefer it?

 C. Is your product or service fully developed? If not, show a timetable.

 D. Market tests that have been made and test results.

 E. Follow-on (next generation) products and services.

III. The market. 

 A. Description of the market segment(s) to be served.

 1. Demographic characteristics (location, sex, age, education, income, religion, social class) of buyers.

 2. Values, opinions, interests, life styles, attitudes.

 3. Size of the market segment (number of buyers) and growth trends.

 4. Purchase volumes (units and dollars) and trends.

 B. The media (TV, magazines, newspapers, radio) they watch, read or listen to.

 C. The retail outlets they patronize.

 D. How satisfied are these buyers with presently available offerings? Are they searching actively for new products (or services) and new sources?

 E. How buyers make their decisions.

 1. Purchase criteria employed by buyers: price, quality, features, durability, taste, flavor, color, variety, prestige, convenience.

 2. How often do they buy? How often do they change brands, sources, vendors or suppliers? For what reasons?

 3. Who participates in the buying decision? What factors are important to each participant in the buying process?

 4. Do any of these purchasing-process participants consult others before deciding? Whom?

 5. In this market, who are the early adopters of new products or services of this type?

 6. Who are the later adopters? How long does it take them to adopt? Do they consult the early adopters?

 F. Description of related market segments.

IV. Environmental analysis: opportunities and threats. 

 A. Strengths and weaknesses of competitors. For each important competitor:

 1. Market shares, current and trends.

 2. Product(s).

 3. Distribution channels.

 4. Promotional activities.

 5. Pricing and discounts.

 6. Patents, copyrights, experience, cost of production.

 7. Financial resources.

 8. Organization.

 9. Management.

 B. Economic conditions, current and projected.

 C. Legal and regulatory concerns.

 D. Changes in technology.

 E. Societal and cultural changes.

V. Public Relations (PR). Objectives and programs. Your PR programs for the following PR objectives. Each program covers news conferences, print and broadcast media, themes, schedules, persons responsible, budget and evaluation systems.  

 A. Announcing formation of the new company: products, services, markets, management.

 B. Attracting desirable employees.

 C. Assistance in raising capital.

 D. Helping to market products and services.

 E. Preventing unfavorable publicity, or lessening its impact.

VI. Your marketing strategy. 

 A. Channels of distribution to be used and their buying decision process.

 B. Promotion to consumers, channels, other decision influencers.

 1. Personal selling.

 a) Size of the sales force.

 b) Organization.

 c) Recruitment and selection.

 d) Training.

 e) Territories and work-loads.

 f) Quotas, compensation and motivation.

 g) Budgets and control plan.

 2. Advertising.

 a) Target audience.

 b) Media.

 c) Themes and messages.

 d) Budgets.

 e) Measurement and evaluation.

 f) Co-op advertising.

 3. Sales promotion.

 a) Samples.

 b) Brochures.

 c) Point of sale displays.

 d) Incentives to dealers.

 e) Trade shows.

 4. Direct mail marketing.

 a) Target audience.

 b) Lists.

 c) Direct mail pieces and catalogs.

 d) Outside services to be used.

 e) Coupons, 800 numbers, addresses.

 f) Themes and messages.

 g) Budgets.

 h) Measurement and evaluation.

 i) Costs of fulfillment.

 5. Other direct response marketing (internet, print media, radio, TV, telephone).

 a) Target audience.

 b) Media.

 c) Websites, Coupons, 800 numbers, addresses.

 d) Themes and messages.

 e) Budgets.

 f) Measurement and evaluation.

 g) Costs of fulfillment.

 C. Pricing to consumers and channels.

 1. Quantity discounts.

 2. Payment terms.

 3. Promotional deals.

 D. Service and warrantee policies.

 E. Sample brochures, ads, announcements.

 F. Current and planned market(ing) research.

VII. Plan of operation. 

 A. Objectives to be achieved over the next three years.

 B. Who is going to achieve these objectives?

 1. Your qualifications for running the business.

 a) Note strengths. Document them with relevant accomplishments.

 b) Note weaknesses. State plans for curing them.

 2. Organization, functions and relationships.

 3. Short résumés of key executives and directors.

 a) Note strengths. Document them with relevant accomplishments.

 b) Note weaknesses. State plans for curing them.

 4. Management ownership and compensation.

 C. How these objectives will be achieved.

 1. Production: in-house and sub-contracted.

 2. Show budgets and location(s).

 3. Research and Development.

 a) Staff.

 b) Facilities.

 c) Budget.

 d) Plans.

 4. Outside services to be used: qualifications of providers and costs.

 5. Computer system(s) to be used and budgets.

VIII. Capital requirements. 

 A. Amounts of capital needed and timing.

 B. Providers of capital: you, investors, lenders.

 C. How providers of capital will be compensated.

 1. Lenders: interest payments and loan repayment schedule.

 2. Investors: dividends and growth in equity.

 3. Plans for sale of the company to another company, or plans for the Initial Public Offering (IPO), timing or other milestones, amount, price.

IX. Financial projections for the first three years. 

 A. Monthly cash flow projections.

 1. Initial cash position.

 2. List of each cash inflow: sales, interest, borrowings, investments.

 3. Less each cost and expense and other cash outflow.

 4. Resulting cash position at the end of the month.

 B. Year end Profit & Loss statement and Balance Sheet.

 C. Sales volume you need to break even, each year.

X. Legal considerations. 

 A. Legal form of the business: proprietorship, partnership, corporation, chapter S.

 B. Patents and copyrights.

 C. Non-compete agreements.

XI. Allocation of equity: initial and projected. 

 A. Your share.

 B. Shares of management group.

 C. Shares of investors.

 D. Stock options.

XII. Monthly schedule for starting the business. 

 A. Actions.

 B. Person(s) responsible.

 C. Location(s).

 D. Resources required.

XIII. Control system. 

 A. What is to be measured and reported.

 B. Specific targets to be achieved.

 C. Frequency of reporting.

 D. To whom are reports to be made.

XIV. Contingency plans. 

 A. Explicit discussion of risks: what may go wrong?

 1. Which goals might not be met and why: product development, sales, market share, profits, expenses, costs.

 2. Competitive threats.

 3. Lawsuits.

 4. Insurable risks and proposed insurance coverage.

 5. Employee related risks and risk reducing measures planned.

 a) Key employee disability or death.

 b) Key employee leaving for another job.

 B. Actions to be taken if and when such problems arise.

XV. Supporting documents. 

 A. Show data to support your ability to meet your goals.

 1. Actual orders.

 2. Personally known potential key accounts.

 3. Lists of good prospects.

 B. Pictures of the product.

 C. Price lists.

 D. Copies of print advertising.

 E. Examples of catalogs and direct mail pieces.

 F. Descriptions of other advertising.

 G. Layout of proposed plant, including flowchart.

 H. List and costs of capital equipment.

 I. List and costs of tooling required.

 J. Detailed discussion of unusual risks involved.

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Last update: Thursday, August 18, 2005 at 2:47:13 PM
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