Business Plan Events and Why They Matter

by Tim Berry

(Note: I posted this earlier this week on the SBA Industry Word blog. It’s reposted here for your convenience.) What do you think of when you hear the phrase “business plan?” Does that bring to mind a formal document that starts with a summary and includes modules describing your business’s products, market, strategy, team, and... Read More »

20 Reasons to Write a Business Plan

by Tim Berry

A list of 20 good reasons for business planning in all businesses, not just startups. Strategy, tactics, cash flow, and lots more Read More »

A Good Resolution: Schedule Regular Management Meetings

by Tim Berry

Each year, as you get ready to publish the next year's plan, schedule the plan review meetings. Use some regular meeting schedule such as the third or fourth Thursday of every month. All the managers committed to the plan will... Read More »

Tim Berry Lean Business Plan

Video: Lean Business Planning

by Tim Berry

I was pleased to join Dustin Luther of D&B B2B for this Facebook Live video on lean business planning. Read More »

Planning Principle: Good Business Planning Empowers Accountability

by Tim Berry

It’s easier to be friends with your coworkers than to manage them well. Every small-business owner suffers the problem of management and accountability. Good business planning empowers accountability. Good business planning sets clear expectations and then follows up on results. It compares results with expectations. People on a team are held accountable only if management actually... Read More »

Planning Principle: Continuous Process, Not Just a Plan

by Tim Berry

Don’t think of planning as just a plan that you do once. Planning done right is a process of continuous improvement. Keep your business plan always fresh and current. Never finish a business plan, heave a sigh of relief, and congratulate yourself that you’ll never have to do that again. Don’t use it once and throw it away.... Read More »

10 Myths vs. Reality on Business Plans and Startup Investment

by Tim Berry

I gather from a stream of emails I’ve received that there are a lot of misconceptions on the relationship between a business plan and getting seed money and/or angel investment. So here’s a list of reality checks to apply to all those lists. Business plans are necessary but not sufficient. Even a great business plan... Read More »

5 Management Benefits of Lean Business Planning

by Tim Berry

Don’t think of a business plan as a formal document that’s hard to do, useful only for startups, bank loan applications, and seeking investment. Think of it as lean business planning that’s just lists and tables and is vital for optimizing business management. You plan, run, review, and revise. It’s a process. A constant cycle.... Read More »

How to Start a Business Plan

by Tim Berry

How do I start a business plan? It’s a common question. And you can find lots of definitive answers. People answer with outlines, prescriptions, and recipes. Unfortunately, most of these misunderstand how people are different, and the way they approach the business plan ought to reflect that difference. Let me explain with some examples of... Read More »

Form Follows Function

Lean Business Plan: Form Follows Function

by Tim Berry

Your lean business plan is no more than what you need to run your business. In the beginning, it might be as simple as an elevator speech. Be able to talk through those key points: the customer story, what makes you unique, how you’re focusing and on what you’re focusing, and, if it comes to that,... Read More »