Once again I am indebted to Rob Warlow of Small Business Success for providing the contents of this blog/article.
Take it away Rob
Professional Business Plan Writers: Should You Hire One?
Are you interested in starting up your own business? If so, you should carefully consider writing a business plan. The thought of preparing a business plan tends to fill most business owners with dread; it can be a difficult, stressful, and time consuming process. For this reason alone you may want to think about seeking assistance.
One of the many ways that you can seek help to write your plan is by hiring a professional, who in this case is a professional business plan writer.
What Is a Professional Business Plan Writer?
Before deciding whether or not you should hire the services of a professional business plan writer, you should first clearly understand what they are. In most cases, you will find these individuals to be experienced, professional writers who are well versed in business terminology and who can effectively understand the needs of businesses. It is important to understand when writing anything, even a business plan, that it is the wording which makes all the difference; the words used can be the difference between success and failure. That is why a large number of small business owners turn to professional writers for assistance.
What a Professional Business Plan Writer Can Do For You
When it comes to searching for a professional business plan writer, you will find that different writers perform different duties. For example, a large number of writers will merely take your ideas, which you have already thought out and developed, and present them in a professional matter; they will just present your plans in a more professional way than you could.
Then there are the professional business plan writers who will work with you to develop your plan from the inception of the basic ideas for your business to the finish document. Naturally since more work and time goes into to assisting you with developing a business plan from the bottom up you will probably find that the services of these writers cost more than traditional ones.
It is important therefore that before you start your search you be very clear in your own mind as to what level of support and input you require.
Why Hire a Professional Business Plan Writer?
There are a number of different reasons why small business owners turn to professional business plan writers. One of the key reasons is of lack of experience when it comes to putting ideas on paper and not knowing what format a plan should take. If you have never created a business plan before you can easily find yourself staring at a blank piece of paper for hours on end!
Although it is relatively easy to learn how to create your own plan, it can be a time consuming process to undertake the research and get into the appropriate mindset. With the right experience, a professional business plan writer will be able to create a detailed, professional business plan in half the time that it would take you to create the same plan.
How Do You Find Someone?
If you are interested in acquiring the services of a professional business plan writer, you have a number of different options. One of those options is to search for someone locally. Dealing with a local business plan writer is great, especially if you want to deal with someone face-to-face. Your search can focus on your local government business advice centres or even asking fellow business colleagues. If there is a writing group or circle in your locality then you can approach them for potential names.
The only problem that you may find is that not all areas of your country will have professional business plan writers. This means you may have to turn to the Internet for assistance. By conducting an online search you will find a large number of professional writers who specialize in creating or writing business plans.
What Should You Look For Before Hiring?
When choosing a professional business plan writer it is important that you don’t choose either the first person that you come across, or the cheapest. If a well written business plan is crucial to the success of your plans then you must be careful in your selection. Your business plan may not only be used for your personal guidance, but it may also be used to attract financing for your business and that is why your plan must look professional, be detailed and readable.
Before hiring a writer, you should request samples of previous work and also ask to see testimonials from business owners who have used their services. This will help to ensure you are getting your moneys worth and that you end up with a business plan you can proud distribute.
As with any contract you enter into be very certain what you are getting for your money. Does the contract include the provision for free updates or unlimited revisions before the final version is agreed? Will you be charged per word, per page, or by the hour? Make sure you fully understand the deal.
By following these points you should be able to decide whether or not a professional business plan writer can assist you. Whilst they can be an additional cost you may not be able to afford, in the long run it could be the best investment you ever made.
You will find a complete guide on how to write a business plan in my e-book ‘The Secrets of Writing a Killer Business Plan’ .
Small Business Success
© Robert Warlow
Robert runs a number of websites focusing on ideas and tips for small businesses, and people running online businesses. Check out his websites for free newsletters, e-books and articles: http://www.smallbusinesssuccess.biz ,
You are now back to me.
As you can see, this is another excellent article from Rob and I can also recommend his other connected E-book "Secrets Of Getting Your Bank Manager To Say Yes"
Most business plans are prepared to help raise finance and as Rob is a bank manager, this is an invaluable guide to way they think.
As someone who does offer business plan writing services I also want to add in my thoughts on this subject.
I can certainly understand how daunting it is when you sit down ready to start writing a business plan. That's especially true when you're not sure of what to do or even what your business will really do.
But in my view that is an invaluable learning experience. Preparing a business plan forces you to ask and answer some difficult questions. It is something that every aspiring entrepreneur and business start-up should do.
Your business plan may show that your business concept just doesn't work (most under-estimate how long it takes to work through the sales cycle and start producing a consistent stream of revenue).
Don't feel that it is a wasted exercise or feel tempted to tweak things around so that the plan looks sensible and the business appears a viable opportunity. It is much better to lose money on paper than in real life.
If you are an aspiring entrepreneur I would recommend that you have a go at producing your own plan. That way you really own the ideas and numbers. However if you struggle to communicate effectively in writing (and many people do) it is a good idea to pass it to an experienced business professional for review and "polishing".
There are plenty of guides to help you to write a business plan and show you the content that you need to include. I would also recommend that you consider using specialised business planning software that will provide a template (a series of questions) that you then answer. The software should also help you to produce your numbers.