Having a structured plan is crucial for any small business. If you’re looking for a place to start, then check out these free business plan templates for small businesses.
These will guide you through the framework of creating a small business plan so that you can be sure to stay on track.
While there are many types of business plans available, I would suggest having one simplified version when starting out.
I’m sure many companies and business will disagree but what I found personally dealing with hundreds of small business every single week is, that the more complicated the plan is the easier it is NOT to follow.
The three main types of business plans.
There are three main plans you should be focusing on when you’re running an Australian small business.
This is even more important if you are a sole trader and have no staff as your time will be your most scarce resource.
A structured simple plan will save you countless hours spent on irrelevant tasks and activities. Having a plan will make sure you keep the main objective insight.
I’m not going into detail about how to write the plan as there’s a lot of great content online that goes into this in detail.
Instead, I will leave you with some free business plan templates for small businesses that are easy to follow.
I do, however, want to give you an outline of the three main types of planning you should be focusing on.
This is an overall plan and direction of the business with your number-one goal we discussed earlier to be the ultimate successful result.
Think about this as an elaboration of your ”vision statement” and then the formulation of a strategy to achieve it.
This plan is generally long-term and has large goals at set intervals such as a yearly basis.
Basically, these are the main things you want to achieve in your chosen market. If you need help with where to find market research check out my last post (here).
This is a plan of your daily, weekly and monthly activities that actually allow you to meet your strategic goals.
This is a much more short-term planning cycle and is usually a lot more flexible and adaptive.
Your operational plan should include things like hours worked training, stock control, etc.
This is also the plan that will play a crucial role in your time management and organization.
without a solid operational plan, you can find yourself quickly falling into bad habits and wasting precious resources on irrelevant tasks.
This is the cash flow in, and out of your business alongside any financial budgets used in day to day operations.
This must also include allocations for both fixed and variable costs, and any investments or money borrowed.
Free business plan templates for small businesses
The Australian government has put together a structured template that you can use for free. They have even developed a guide to help you through it along with some information to give you tips on how to write a solid plan.
This is a single plan that covers all aspects of your business and incorporates the three main plan types mentioned earlier.
While I think, this is a great tool it may be too detailed for the sole trader or micro business owner, but you can just use what is relevant
Nab bank provides a free Australian small business plan template that also covers all the main aspects we mentioned earlier.
Just like the one created by the government this free business plan templates for small businesses can be filled in using the handy word document provided and is a great starting point.
There is no formal guide for this plan; However, they have some great articles on planning that should help you through it.
This toolkit created by Commbank is a great looking and easy to use free Australian small business plan template.
The template includes a useful financial section that will help you with your forecasting. Commbank also has some good advice on their website to guide you through the planning process.
So now you know where to find free business plan templates for small businesses you can get to work.
Don’t be scared of making a mistake, you can always adapt your plan as you go.
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If you have a great Australian business plan template you would like to share let us know!