5 Common Excuses for not Doing a Business Plan

I have often been presented with business ideas for which no serious business plan had been prepared for. When I asked whether they had done a business plan, the excuses I most often got were almost always the same. If any of these sounds familiar, let me walk you through as to why you do need a plan and refer you to some other useful articles and resources.

5 Excuses for not doing a business plan picture

The Excuses

1. “I am an expert, I got a great idea, I got contacts, etc …”

It is possible that everything is true and that you are all set up for success, but I know from experience that sometimes too much confidence can be the greatest blindfold. When you believe that you know everything and have all you need, you relax and make assumptions, rather than critically assessing the situation and your approach to it.

For instance your experience may be outdated, your contacts may not be so good, the competition has a stronger position, the customers may be different from what you expect, you may face unexpected problems such as political instability, corruption, a new competing product, etc. I am convinced a little caution and prior planning can do you a lot of good and allow you to sleep better at night.

2. “Business plans are just for investors”

True indeed, so in fact you owe it to yourself… Surprised? This is the definition of an investor according to the Cambridge Dictionary.

Investor Definition

Fact is, it is you who will spend his most valuable resource, his time on the project, and is there not a saying:

“Time is money!”

Time is finite and you either spend it one way or the other. Time is your most valuable asset. Now ask yourself these questions and if you answer “yes” to either one of these, you need a business plan.

  • Do you want to avoid making stupid mistakes?
  • Do you want to prevent wasting your time and money?
  • Do you want to minimize the financial risk that you may face?
  • Do you want to avoid problems in your relationships with your loved ones?

A business will strain your finances, your health and also your relationships, so make sure that you have thought of everything you can think off before you start. You owe it to yourself and to your loved ones.

3. “It is a simple business there is no need for it”

A business can be as simple as opening a little store and selling burgers, salads and non alcoholic drinks. Sounds simple but there is much more to it if you want to be successful. Otherwise why do you think Mac Donalds and other Franchise invest heavily in selecting the best locations. In addition to this there are many other things to be considered, which normally are not thought off straight away: Necessary financing, marketing, etc.

4. “I have no time to waste”

If that is so, think of what I just said a little further up, it is your time, you choose how you are going to use it, so you owe it to yourself. So imagine if you had not thought of how your competitor might react, or about the seasonality of your customers, so how about you give it some more thought. there are many things you need to consider and learn before you actually start to avoid making exactly this mistake.

5. “It can wait”

Tell me how do you react under stress? Do you have time to think much when things go wrong and people are at your door asking for their money, or you cannot deliver a product because you ran out of resources? I do not think so, so you better sit down before you even consider starting, and think of how to prevent such a situation, or how to cope with both extraordinary success, there have been companies who went under because they could not handle their success.

Just common sense

There is one saying which I cherish and which I was taught at my first company by a friend of mine:

“Proper, planning prevents piss poor performance.”

Business Plan Check off List

So what are you waiting for if you have an idea you cannot wait to make reality, do your homework and start planning! Here are some useful articles and resources. This is a very complete book that I have used and can recommend.

If you have already set up your business.  Let me know whether you did it with a business plan or not? Do you wish you had prepared one in advance? If you have done business plans before, what is the part you most struggle with?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *