Today, I decided to apply for Impact 3, a local startup competition in Charlotte for new companies with social responsibility as part of their core values. The application itself was a great learning experience because it included a series of questions around business planning that really got me thinking critically about my business idea. These are great questions that any entrepreneur should ask him/herself in the early stages of creating a new business.
- Who is on your business team and what are their roles? In particular who is responsible for Operations/Management, Marketing/Sales and Leadership?
- What are the three biggest drivers to success for your company?
- What is the problem you are trying to solve?
- Who is your customer, how acute is their pain, and what is your market size?
- How will you market, produce, sell and deliver your product or service to the customer?
- How will you make money with your business?
- What is the revenue potential for your business over the next 3 years?
Just answering these questions alone take time and energy. I would venture to say that if you can’t answer these questions thoroughly and confidently, you may need to take some more time and effort to get your business plan in shape for success!