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Business Plans for Dummies

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Overview

Would you take off on a road trip to a new destination without a map or good directions? Probably not. Yet, sometimes business owners go full speed ahead without even having a destination in mind, much less a map on how to get there. That’s why so many businesses never make it. In today’s competitive marketplace, 3/4 of all new businesses fail within two to three years. Whether you’re launching a new business or working to strengthen or expand an established one, a business plan...

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Overview

Would you take off on a road trip to a new destination without a map or good directions? Probably not. Yet, sometimes business owners go full speed ahead without even having a destination in mind, much less a map on how to get there. That’s why so many businesses never make it. In today’s competitive marketplace, 3/4 of all new businesses fail within two to three years. Whether you’re launching a new business or working to strengthen or expand an established one, a business plan is your road map to success.

Business Plans For Dummies, 2nd Edition helps you keep your businesses on track and reach your goals. Written by Paul Tiffany, PhD, professor at UC Berkley Haas Business School and the Wharton School of Business and Steven Peterson, PhD, Professor at UC Berkeley Haas Business School and CEO of Strategic Play, it helps you

  • Realistically determine where your business is and where you want to go
  • Create a detailed business plan and put it into action instead of in a drawer
  • Use the plan to secure financing
  • Prepare for opportunities avoid common pitfalls

In short, Business Plans for Dummies helps you determine where you want your business to go and create a map for getting there. You’ll discover how to:

  • Identify and approach potential financial backers, including venture capital firms, angels, bankers, and others
  • Clarify and crystallize your company’s mission, vision, and values
  • Analyze your industry and your competition
  • Identify your customers, including their needs, habits, purchase triggers, and decision-making processes
  • Objectively analyze your company’s strengths and weaknesses
  • Analyze your financial situation in order to do realistic forecasts and budgets
  • Recognize trends and anticipate changes, both in the overall economy and in your industry
  • Plan for growth, considering the product life cycle, new products, or new markets
  • Structure your organization and nurture leadership

Complete with diverse techniques and approaches plus a sample business plan, Business Plans For Dummies gives you detailed how-to for designing a dynamic, business plan that will keep you on course in spite of the inevitable curves and detours in today’s marketplace. It’s a plantastic resource for business owners and entrepreneurs.

This fun and easy reference for entrepreneurs, managers, executives, and small business owners covers all the components needed to develop a successful business plan--from creating a mission statement to developing goals and objectives to executing and managing the plan. Cartoons. 384 pp.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764576522
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 12/27/2004
  • Series: For Dummies Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 230,062
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.78 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul Tiffany is the managing director of Paul Tiffany & Associates, a Santa Rosa, California-based firm that has offered management training and consulting services to organizations throughout the world for the past fifteen years. In addition, he has taught business planning courses at some of the top business schools in the country, including Stanford, Wharton, and The Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, where he currently serves as adjunct professor. He holds an MBA from Harvard University and a Ph.D. from Berkeley. He can be reached by e-mail at tiffany@haas.berkeley.edu.

Steven Peterson is a senior partner and founder of Home Planet Technologies, a management training company specializing in hands-on software tools designed to enhance business strategy, business planning, and general management skills. He is the creator and designer of "The Protean Strategist," a state of the art computer-based business simulation. The simulation creates a dynamic business environment where participants run companies and compete against each other in a fast-changing marketplace. Each management team in the simulation is responsible for developing its own strategy, business plan, and program to make the plan work. Steven has used The Protean Strategist to add excitement, hands-on experience, teamwork, and a competitive challenge to corporate training programs around the world. He has worked with both large and small companies on products and services in industries ranging from telecommunications to financial services and from high technology to consumer goods and industrial equipment. He can be reached by e-mail at peterson@HomePlanetTech.com.

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Table of Contents

Introduction.

Part I: Knowing Where You Want to Go.

Chapter 1: Preparing to Do a Business Plan.

Chapter 2: Understanding the Importance of a Business Plan.

Chapter 3: Setting Off in the Right Direction.

Chapter 4: Charting the Proper Course.

Part II: Describing Your Marketplace.

Chapter 5: Examining the Business Environment.

Chapter 6: Slicing and Dicing Markets.

Chapter 7: Getting Better Acquainted With Customers.

Chapter 8: Checking Out Your Competition.

Part III: Weighing Your Company’s Prospects.

Chapter 9: Assessing Where You Stand Today.

Chapter 10: Making Money Doing What You Do Best.

Chapter 11: Figuring Out the Financial Details.

Chapter 12: Forecasting and Budgeting.

Part IV: Looking to the Future.

Chapter 13: Managing Uncertainty.

Chapter 14: Thinking Strategically.

Chapter 15: Growing Up and Growing Bigger.

Part V: Putting Your Business Plan into Action.

Chapter 16: Shaping Your Organization.

Chapter 17: Leading the Way.

Part VI: The Part of Tens.

Chapter 18: Ten Signs That Your Business Plan Needs Refreshing.

Chapter 19: Ten Questions to Ask about Your Plan.

Chapter 20: Ten Business-Planning Never-Evers.

Appendix: A Sample Business Plan.

Index.

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