The first step in any entrepreneur’s journey is creating a solid business plan. However, the real work begins after drafting the business plan. After creating a business plan, entrepreneurs must pay close attention to emerging opportunities while managing risks effectively.
Here are six things entrepreneurs must do after creating their business plan:
1. Refine and Validate the Business Plan
Business plan is not a done-and-dusted thing. It requires continuous updates as new information comes to light. After drafting the initial version, entrepreneurs must thoroughly review the business plan to identify any gaps or flawed assumptions. Conduct additional market research, competitive analysis, and financial modeling to validate key aspects of the plan. Also, consider bringing in financial advisors or mentors to provide an objective perspective.
2. Build the Right Team
No entrepreneur can do everything alone. Identify key roles and responsibilities for launching and managing the business. Then start building a team with the right skill sets and experience. Leverage your personal and professional networks to find talented people you can trust. Don’t just hire people; inspire them to share your entrepreneurial vision and values. Foster a collaborative culture focused on solving problems creatively.
3. Fundraise and Manage Finances
Implement your fundraising strategy to secure the necessary capital as outlined in your business plan. Many entrepreneurs bootstrap in the early days through personal savings, loans, credit cards, or grants. You may also need to pitch your business to angel investors or VCs. Manage finances meticulously, track burn rate, and develop contingency plans. Build relationships with legal, tax and accounting partners.
4. Handle Legal and Administrative Tasks
Take care of licensing, permits, registrations, trademarks, insurance policies, leases, and other legal formalities to establish the proper business structure. Choose the right business name and register your brand identity. Set up business banking accounts, accounting systems, HR policies, etc. Document everything diligently right from the start.
5. Develop Products or Services
Create a minimum viable product (MVP) that encapsulates the core value proposition of your offerings. Refine this constantly based on customer feedback. Build partnerships and supply chains to source quality materials or components. Focus on delighting early adopters, who can become brand advocates. Invest in R&D for future product pipelines.
6. Market and Sell Effectively
Create marketing assets and sales collateral aligned with your brand identity. Develop data-driven digital marketing campaigns on relevant platforms. Build partnerships and a distribution network. Personally connect with early customers to understand their pain points. Offer promotions and discounts to incentivize sales. Keep iterating until you find the right product-market fit.
The key is to maintain a relentless focus on flawless execution across all of these fronts in a coordinated manner. Pay close attention to emerging opportunities while managing risks effectively. With robust planning and agile adaptation, you can make your business vision a success.