Strategy illustration Strategy theory

Creating and evaluating your business plan

A business plan is a description of a business and its plans for the next one to three years. It explains what the business does (or will do if it's a new business); it suggests who will buy the product or service and why; it provides financial forecasts demonstrating overall viability; and indicates the finance available and explains the financial requirements.

A simple business plan should be clearly set out under the following headings:

1. Contents page

2. Details about the owner

3. A description of the business

4. An outline of the market

5. Advertising and promotion

6. Premises and equipment

7. How the business is organised

8. A guide to how much it costs to produce the product or service

9. Details of the how the finance will be raised

10. A outline of cash flow in the first year

11. Plans for future expansion.

Business plan

Business plans are particularly important for new start up businesses, because they provide a framework for the owner to work to. Also if the owner wishes to raise finance from a bank or other lender then it will be essential to provide a clear business plan, so that the bank can feel confident in making a loan.

For larger organisations - the business plan is typically called the 'corporate strategy' based on the American Word Corporation (business) and the term strategy (plan).

The business plan sets out the means by which an organisation will achieve its business objectives. Without a clear plan a business will have little sense of direction.


Supporting Documents

These downloads will help to put strategy theory into context using real world examples from real businesses.

Using the marketing mix in the fashion industry
Ben Sherman logo

Find out how Ben Sherman employed strategy theory to thrive in the fashion industry by downloading our premium case study.

Sponsorship as part of the marketing mix
Ford logo

Find out how Ford used strategy theory to succeed in the automotive industry by downloading our premium case study.

The marketing mix in the food industry
McCain Foods logo

Learn how McCain Foods used strategy theory to thrive in the food & drink industry by downloading our premium case study.

Meeting customers' needs
Travis Perkins logo

Find out how Travis Perkins employed strategy theory to succeed in the construction industry by downloading our premium case study.

Leading a revolution in banking
Intelligent finance logo

Discover how Intelligent finance applied strategy theory to thrive in the financial services industry by downloading our premium case study.