When we became serious about our nautical tourism business idea and had a clear mental image of the plan, writing a business plan became the important next step. Any serious business idea should be written out in a formal business plan. The plan is useful not only for a bank or investor but also for the business owner. The process of writing the plan helps to systematically think through all the details of the business and formulate a plan to tackle them.
It was a surprise how helpful the process was. It was time consuming and challenging but worth the effort. The process made me work through all the details of the business from the daily operations to the marketing plan ins and outs. And ultimately was required by the financing institutions we applied and were approved for financing from.
I found SCORE to be an extremely helpful free resource during the process. I used a SCORE template to outline my business plan. It breaks down each section and walks you through what should be included. I also found the financial projections templates to be an amazing tool. The excel spreadsheet templates have all the formulas build into 18 different sheets and you just plug in your numbers and the template does the rest.
SCORE also has free mentors available for advisement. The mentors are retirees and experienced in some relevant arena of the business world. Their advisement is confidential and we found it a valuable resource as well.
If you are reading this post you likely have an idea or a dream in mind. I encourage you to challenge yourself and just start. For me it has been helpful to just begin and take on one task or action at a time. It is difficult to take the first step when you look at how difficult the task is. But once you start piece by piece it all comes together.
“Remember, don’t try to build the greatest wall thats ever been built. Focus on laying a single, expertly-placed brick. Then keep doing that, every day.” -Will Smith