Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Business Plans

I got a business plan by email last week.

Yesterday I took a half hour to go through it and make suggestions, but after sending them and hearing back from them it was clear they weren't really interested in my input.

They want connections. I like what they're doing so I'll send it around, but it's a flawed but good-looking document.

That's not what I want to write about. But it sparked a few thoughts.

If you want people to invest in you, you'll likely need the plan. I can't stand writing them, but there are two reasons I still tell founders to do the work: some investors still expect it, and it really does make you think through the business you're shopping.

The business model is where the rubber meets the road, though. Show your monthly projections, identify your assumptions, allow variable growth rates.

You'll learn a lot more about where the pressure points are by messing with the numbers instead of rewriting paragraphs about market potential.

Lead with your best stuff--ready for a runon sentence?

We do this for these customers who pay us this much money with this frequency because we give them these benefits and then they tell their friends and their friends buy it too, and here's proof.

Sold.

Now back to the grindstone, back to the list and a large bottle of water on a sunny New York day.

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