Business Planning

Who Needs A Business Plan?

“Do I really need a business plan?”

Well, if you’re not planning to start a business, or you are not running one, then you don’t need a business plan.

So it’s quite simple—if you own or plan to start a business, you need a business plan.

A business plan is a document that describes your business, its objectives and strategies, the market you will operate in, and your financial forecasts.

Without a written plan, it can be difficult to successfully run or plan any business.

According to one study, businesses that follow business plans have 30% greater chances of growth than those that don’t.

Whether you are a freelancer, a small business, a new business or an established corporation, a business plan is for everyone.

Let’s find out how having a business plan can help you with your business type.  


mother at laptop with daughter on lap

If You are a Freelancer

Freelancers or sole traders are their own bosses as they can choose their own work hours, and the projects or clients they work with.

If you are one of them, creating a business plan might not be your priority. You might think that it’s only for a major company or big establishment with multiple subsidiaries.

Of course, you don’t need a business plan as long as you want to be in the same place as you are now, in terms of working hours, client numbers, job satisfaction and above all, income level. Or if you think that the work marketplace, the trends and the work you do won’t change over time. Fine. As you were.

But if you are planning for better pay, shorter working hours, smarter work, and a bigger, better client base, consider making a business plan.

While there are many things that you might come up with on your own as a freelancer, one of the most important aspects of running a successful freelancing business is having a good and well-thought-out business plan.

For example, the biggest challenge that many freelancers face is in finding work. Having a business plan can help address this concern.


Let’s say you offer web designing services for small businesses.

When you create a business plan with this in mind, you become aware of your market and target audience. You get to know what most of your clients offer, how much they can spend and your competitors. Based on these insights, you can create an efficient plan to convince them. Maybe you lower the cost of your services to get a competitive edge.

A good business plan will also help you as a freelancer in setting realistic goals for yourself.

Many independent contractors take on projects without really thinking through the process or knowing exactly where they are headed with regard to their careers; this can often lead to problems when deadlines are not met or expectations are not met from the client’s end.

Your business plan should give you an indication of what your goals and expectations should be so that it becomes easier for you to meet them. This will help in ensuring that your clients enjoy working with you and also keep coming back for more work.

Another important benefit of having a good business plan is that it helps you in tracking your progress; if the client demands a report in terms of how much work has been completed or if there has been any other bump on the way, then you can use your business plan as an indicator of whether or not things are going well.

You can easily see where weaknesses exist within your freelancing business and make changes accordingly so that issues do not continue to crop up later on.

Last but not the least, having a good business plan will help you in getting funding for your freelancing business.

If you are planning to expand your workforce or purchase new equipment to be able to do more work, then you must have a solid financial plan in place along with increasing your rates and adding new services to your portfolio depending on what the client wants.

Having a detailed business plan can go a long way in helping you get funding from investors which will definitely help when it comes to taking the next step forward.

Even if you never show your business plan to anyone, it can help you keep track of your goals.


If You are a Start-Up

Let’s accept it.

Many budding entrepreneurs kick-start their ventures without having a business plan in place. Either they take it as mere paperwork or consider it for the later stages as their business grows.

But getting started without a business plan is just like going on a trip without a map. As a result, you are likely to experience bumpy roads, dead ends and even running out of fuel.

Likewise, without having a business plan, you might not be able to determine or foresee your gains, expenses, customer markets, risks, etc.

With a business plan, you can clarify your strategy, identify potential roadblocks, decide what to do and when to do it, and assess the viability of growth plans even before you start a business.

By creating a well-thought-out business plan at the beginning of your start-up, you will be giving yourself a solid foundation on which to build and grow. This means that you can focus on reaching your milestones and achieving success.


If You Are Looking To Start A Business

Starting a new business is an exciting and rewarding experience, but it can also be overwhelming if you don’t have a clear plan in place.

Creating a business plan at the outset of your venture can help you navigate the various tasks and decisions that come along with starting a new company.

A good business plan serves as your roadmap for setting goals and measuring progress, as well as helping you anticipate future challenges.

One of the most important reasons to create a business plan when starting a company is that it helps you stay focused on your goals and objectives. When you’re starting, many distractions can divert your attention from what’s really important. A good business plan serves as a roadmap for your company, helping you stay focused on what you want to achieve and how you want to get there.

When you’re launching a new enterprise, many unknowns can throw your plans off course. A strong business plan will help identify potential risks that may impact your company, and it will give you the information you need to mitigate those risks.

If You are an Established Business

An established or large business can use a business plan to outline certain requirements.

Generally, they use it to secure financing for expansion or a major purchase.

A well-crafted business plan can also help them identify potential issues and opportunities within your existing business that could affect its future success. Additionally, if they are looking to bring on new partners or executives, it is essential to have a clear and thorough business plan to convince them of your vision for the company.

Whether you need funding or simply want to ensure that your established business is on track for continued success, a well-written business plan can help you achieve your goals.

With careful planning, attention to detail, and strategic thinking, you can create a comprehensive plan that will guide your business to continued growth and success. ​

As an established business, you know the importance of having a clear roadmap for planning and decision-making. A well-crafted business plan can help you anticipate risks and opportunities within your existing business, as well as position your company to gain support from lenders or investors when you need it most. If you’re looking to expand your company or bring on new partners, a strong business plan can help you convince others of your vision and secure the support you need for continued success.


By this point, you will have understood why a business plan is important, irrespective of the size, scope and history of your business.

A business plan is an essential document for any small business owner. It provides a roadmap of your goals and the steps you need to take to reach them.

And it leads to some key benefits listed below….

It establishes clear milestones for evaluating progress along the way

You set out goals for yourself at the beginning which helps provide structure to what can be an overwhelming process if left unplanned. The milestones act as checkpoints on the road to success, allowing you to evaluate how far you have come and what further steps are needed to achieve your goal.

It allows you to forecast your profit margins

A business plan provides a clear analysis of your industry, market and competition. This means you can forecast your sales revenues and estimate the projected costs of goods sold to calculate gross profit margin. You also get to set targets for growth as well as see clearly where any potential issues may lie.

It shows you have thought through all aspects of your plans

Investors and lenders will be impressed by a business plan that has been well-researched and reflects thorough planning on the part of the entrepreneur or company behind the venture. They will recognise this as an indicator that they are dealing with someone who is professional, organised and serious about their endeavour.

It gives you clear goals to strive towards

Having a business plan gives you a roadmap that you can use as a target. When things become difficult and challenges arise, it is easy to lose perspective and motivation when there isn’t a clear set of goals in front of you to work towards. A well-planned business makes sure that this doesn’t happen by setting crucial milestones throughout the journey.

It helps gain support from lenders or investors

A good business plan provides all the necessary information for financial planning and decision making which allows others to see clearly where the business stands at any given time. This means they can more easily determine whether they want to provide funding or invest in your company, thereby boosting your chances of success significantly.

The Conclusion

Whether you are just starting or looking to expand your established business, a well-crafted business plan can help you achieve your goals and overcome the challenges that come along with running a company.

With careful planning, attention to detail, and strategic thinking, you can create a comprehensive plan that will guide your business to success now and in the future.

Let’s end this blog on a great note with this apt quote by Ms Abrams, author of Successful Business Plan: Secrets and Strategies:

“You may not need a business plan if you’re six Stanford engineers in Silicon Valley who have an app that’s got a million followers, because you’re going to be acquired so you can be hired. But if you’re starting a cafe in Des Moines or a graphic design business in Phoenix, you really want to plan. It doesn’t have to be a big document, but you get to make your mistakes on paper, rather than in real life.”

(Source: NY Times)

So why wait? Start creating your business plan today!

The Virtual COO was founded to help small businesses access expertise to deal with operational problems and more, without having to hire or pay for a full-time Chief Operations Officer.

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