A business development plan is not something that forever dictates how your business must operate. It's a starting point, and you should create one for your business. There are many reasons, though, why you'll need to change it. If you're unwilling to make the necessary changes, and respond to new facts and circumstances, then you're setting yourself up for business failure. You may have to change your business development plan for the following reasons:
1. Taking a New Path
If you've been in business for a few months and have a better understanding of what it is you really want to do, it may not be the initial business you had in mind. You'll need to change your business development plan to reflect the new path you've chosen. The financial and other data you collected in your initial plan will need to be changed, and you will have to conduct additional market research. Your competitors may or may not be the same, and it's important to get fresh information so that you can effectively compete.
2. Decision to Include New Marketing Strategies
Even if the new marketing strategies you want to implement cost nothing, it still has an impact on your overall business development plan. You need to change the plan to reflect that. For example, if you started your business long before social media became so influential, you should change your plan to include the specific social media strategies you plan to implement. While it's free to set up accounts on various social media channels, you may need to budget some money to expand your presence or hire a freelance writer to manage your social media activities for you.
3. Joining with a Partner
Your spouse may have joined you in business, or you may have decided to team up with another work-at-home mom. Whoever your new business partner is, your business development plan has to reflect that significant change. Your business goals, salary payouts and other aspects of the plan will most likely change when someone new is added to the mix.
4. More Competitors
Most businesses have at least one competitor, and you may have had only one or two when you first started. Now, there may be several or hundreds of competitors, and you'll need to make changes in your business development plan to stay competitive. At the very least, you'll need to adjust your marketing strategies to distinguish yourself, but the financial, team members and legal aspects of your business development plan may have to be modified.
5. New Business Model
Business models change almost as often as technology continues to advance. If you're changing your business model based on access to different technology or for other reasons, then that change needs to show up in your plan. For example, you need to make changes to your plan if you're switching from a mail-order business to an e-commerce store. The changes you make to your business model affects your finances as well as client and customer relationships.
Using a business plan software program makes the process of making a change to your business development plan much easier. A software program can do the math for you, and spare you the hassles and errors of trying to do financial calculations manually.
Daphne Mallory, Esq. is the co-owner of Mallory Writing Services and has written more than 100 articles helping home based business owners and entrepreneurs start and market their business. You can learn more about her here.