Monday, May 25, 2015

Life After Retirement: Writing a Small Business Plan

Just because you're retired, it doesn't mean that you plan to sit at home doing nothing with your free time. Sure, maybe you'll get up an hour later than usual or take a few more vacation days, but perhaps you've got an idea percolating for a new business or extra retirement income. Congratulations!

Before you do anything else to earn retirement income, it's important to create a business plan to guide your efforts and help fund your new venture without having to tap into your retirement savings.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) recommends that a successful business plan should include the following:
  • Executive summary
  • Market analysis
  • Company description
  • Organization and management
  • Marketing plan
  • Services or products
  • Request for funding
  • Financials
The Executive Summary
Your business plan's executive summary explains what your company is and where you want it to go. Because the summary is the first thing prospective investors and lenders will read, it needs to quickly catch their attention and make them want to keep reading.
Market Analysis
It's important that you include a thorough market analysis to demonstrate that you understand where your product or service fits. The SBA suggests items to include are an industry description and outlook, target market information, market test results, lead times and an evaluation of your competition.
Company Description
Your company description should be a high-level look at the following key components:
  • What kind of business you're planning on running
  • The markets you wish to reach
  • Your key differentiators
  • Profiles of top company management
  • The factors that you believe will make your business a success
Organizational Structure
The easiest way to illustrate your new company's structure is with an organizational chart. You can create it in PowerPoint or Word - it doesn't have to be fancy. But it does show that you've given a lot of thought about who will be doing what.
You'll also want to include the legal structure of your business, whether it's a sole proprietorship, an incorporated business, limited liability partnership or other business entity.
Marketing and Sales Strategies
You won't be earning much retirement income if you don't get the word out about your business. How will you do that? With a website and traditional advertising? Social media? Can you do it yourself or do you need to hire a marketing and sales team? Take some time to determine the right marketing course for you.
Products and Services
What are you selling? What services do you provide? For customers, it's all about "What's in it for me," so it's key to concentrate on offering products and services that have a distinct appeal to your customer base.
Requests for Funding
In this section of your business plan, you'll want to focus on the amount of funding you will need to start your business. Include your current funding - such as your retirement savings - your future funding needs over the next five years, how you will use the funds, and any long-range financial strategies that would have an impact on your funding.
Finally, don't over look the financials. Here's what you may want to consider including in your business plan:
  • Historical Financial Data. If you already own a business that's producing retirement income, include the last three to five years of your company's income statements, the balance sheets and cash flow statements.
  • Prospective Financial Data. Prospective financial data is just as important in your business plan since lenders will want to see how you expect your company to do in the future.
Don't Be Afraid to Dream Big
Stepping outside of your comfort zone, dreaming big and going after that dream is a real possibility. All it takes is some smart financial planning and you're on your way to a new adventure - and the potential for more retirement income.
Read the original article at
Article Source:

Article Source:

No comments:

Post a Comment