How To Create An Effective One Page Business Plan
The 1953 Yale Study of Goals
You know the study that states that people who write down their goals are more likely to be successful than those who either don’t write down their goals or worse, don’t even have goals?
Motivational speakers and career coaches from Zig Zigler to Tony Robbins have all mentioned this fact, but in 1996, Fast Company magazine went out in search of the 1953 Yale Study of Goals and came back empty handed.
Is everything we’ve been told a lie?! How can this be?!
Never fear! Recently, Dominican University tackled the commonly misreported statistic. And they have reported some cold hard facts (backed with scientific research and everything). The study revealed that over 60% of the participants who wrote down their goals reported successful goal achievement. That percentage increased to over 70% when participants created “action commitments” and then sent weekly progress reports to a supportive friend.
Why am I sharing this story with you and what does it have to do with business plans?
Business plans are essentially your goals, written out and shared with you company – your boss, your board, your assistant and anyone else who might be affected. If you want to accomplish your goals, if you want to have a successful business, then you NEED to have a business plan.
Maybe you’re thinking, “…but Tyler! I don’t have time!” I hear you and I don’t buy it. If you aren’t willing to sit down and think about the future of your business, then you have no business having a business. If the task of creating a business plan seems overwhelming, then you’re overthinking it.
However, business plans don’t have to be huge analytical and evaluative reports. My business plans are one-page flow charts. It’s so easy and so simple; each quarter I schedule time to review my business plan to make sure my team and I are on track. I don’t have time to create a sixty-page report! And even if I did, when would I have time to go back and revisit it? It would be completely useless!
The proof is in the pudding (or in this case the PDF).
I’m providing you with three of my business plans. The first two are from early on in my career so you can see the transition.
As you can see they are super simple, easy to read and (relatively) straightforward. Each plan includes three pillars of business: marketing, operations and finance.
If you don’t already have a business plan or you need to revamp your business plan, I highly recommend you check out my easy business plan creator. It takes less than 5 minutes to complete, and it totally free!
>>>>>> That sounds awesome! I want to make my own business plan for free!
PS – I realize that as you look through my biz plans, you might wonder what some of the shorthand means, how I got from point A to point B, or where my numbers came from. Of course you can leave your questions in the comment section below but I also put together a short FAQ.
Business Plan FAQ
You can use the time stamps to jump to a specific question:
0:01 – I’m brand new to the biz and haven’t sold anything yet. How do I figure out the finance section?
0:43 – If you’re just getting started, what should you add to the marketing section?
1:46 – If you have a team or partnership, do you create one for the team, or one for each member?
3:00 – How do you know when to add team members?
4:37 – How did you figure out how many leads you should expect from each marketing channel?
6:00 – How often should you update your goals?
7:23 – What you shouldn’t put in my business plan?