When looking to start a business, it is important to have a plan for the first year of the business to ensure that the business is on course for meeting its targets. I was somewhat apprehensive about this assignment due to having no interest in owning my own business in the future, but as I had to do it, I was determined to make a good go of it.
We were introduced to the business model canvas to enable us to get an idea for what we were supposed to be doing. I found this incredibly helpful, as it allowed me to ‘visualise’ the different sections and work out what was meant to be talked about in each one.
Somewhat stuck on an idea, I decided that the easiest thing to do was to expand on the same idea as we had used in the ‘Dragon’s Den’ workshop. My idea was for an ecological surveying team called ‘Ecostern’ that would provide ecological surveying and consultancy services in Bangor and the surrounding area.
After doing some research and discovering that it was a viable idea as there was a lack of ‘competition’, I wrote it up before tackling the maths. I attempted to keep the maths as realistic as possible to ensure that it was accurate, whilst also trying to keep costs low in order to make the business idea seem more realistic.
Writing the plan
I followed the business model canvas when writing my business plan, as I found that it provided me with a checklist of sorts and enabled me to keep track of what I had already covered so that I avoided repeating myself.
- Value proposition
- Key partners
- Customer segments
- Customer relationship & channels
- Key activities & resources
- Cost structure
- Revenues streams
- SWOT analysis
- Appendices (including a summary table for the financial forecast for the first 6 months)
Whilst I received a excellent grade on this assignment, it reinforced my earlier held beliefs that I do not want to own my own business. I do appreciate the skills that it has given me however, and note that other people taking this module who do aspire to owning their own businesses will hopefully have found it more useful than I have.