Business Operational Plan vs. Implementation Plan
It’s the weekend again, so we all have time to spend on developing, editing or review our business plans. This weekend we’ll focus on the operational plan or operational strategy section of the business plan vs. the implementation plan and implementation strategy section of the business plan. The operational plan/strategy is how your Company will be run and the implementation plan/strategy is how you plan to get to the point where you are actually running the Company.
Depending on where you are in the development of the business will dictate which is more important. I assume that if your seeking information on a business plan your probably in the start-up stage or your seeking some type of capital. Therefore, your probably more interested in the implementation strategy vs the operational strategy. The interesting thing most founders fail to develop a implementation plan for the business instead focusing on the operational plan. The reason for this, I think, is that the implementation plan is much more difficult to write. Envisioning how the business will work is much easier than envisioning/identifying all the step to get the business up and running. This is probably start-up always takes longer and cost more than expected.
One of the reasons, I started this blog is to attempt to figure out certain aspects of a business plan that can be improved. The implementation plan is one of them and I am working on a solution. For now, my advice is to simply create a Gantt chart. A gantt chart can be created with Excel, Access or numerous other free online software. Check out Smart Draw for free software.
The set-up is pretty easy just make column headings for Task Name, Start Date, End Date and then for the illustrated time-line choose a period Years, Quarters, Months or other combination that is relevant to your implementation plan. Once you have the columns established you can begin the formation of the implementation plan based on what ever task are relevant to your business.
Engineering (Followed underneath by specific develop task with start dates and end dates)
This should be done for Sales, Marketing, Executive Team, Advisory Team, Financing and every other objective that needs to take place. The benefit of setting this up is it will keep you and your team on task as well as motivate you to finish tasks by designated end dates.
If you want a good business plan critique be sure to have an implementation plan so that investors, team members and anyone else reading your business plan knows what you have to do and when you will have it done by.