The One Page Business Plan Concept

“Read over your existing business plan like you read the menu at your favorite restaurant.” – Darren L Johnson


Here’s a big, bold Yorkshire Powerhouse statement: If you can’t describe your business plan on one A4 piece of paper then the plan is too complicated and lacks focus!

Use visuals, use numbers, use graphics, use pictures, use Brands, use logo’s but, once you have a plan, keep it to one piece of paper.

The truth is, a ‘full and comprehensive business plan‘ is essential when you’re raising finance, recruiting partners or still working things out … BUT – a full plan is simply too clunky for day to day review and most plans end up never being reviewed after the launch of a business.  A condensed one page business plan can change this and provide you with a genuinely useful tool to keep your business on the right track.

What you should include:

Use your branding to illustrate the plan itself, the logo, the colours, the font; all will be used on the document itself. Simply looking at the document without reading should show the style of the business and connect with any reader.

Make the purpose of the business, clear and straightforward.

Show what your point of difference is, what are you going to compete on and then what will you be better at, and how will you be the best?

Confirm the metrics … leads per source, sales conversations, conversion rate, orders, average transaction value … all these total up to sales. Its vital to have these documented clearly so when you do better or worse than your plan you’ll know which metric is responsible.

Within the metrics, also show what your costs will be … people, product costs, overheads, etc.  Also split them by fixed and variable costs to help you understand further profit potential.

Show your profit in big bold numbers!

Cash flow is essential so insert statements of intent about payment terms and then show your positive cash flow per month, once mature. in big bold numbers.

Marketing plans … show the tools and channels you will use to communicate with your customer, for example Twitter, email, advertising, trade shows, networking, etc.  Accepting (and sticking to) this discipline now will provide you with a reference point to avoid the latest idea or fad as they occur.

Show what will you be brilliant at … this ties in with your Point of Difference but recognises that we can’t be marvellous at everything.

Creating your One Page Business Plan will be agonising, you’ll cheat by reducing font sizes and curse the idea, but the discipline and thought processes you’ll exercise will prove to be the most valuable time in your business development.

What to do with your One Page Business Plan?

Keep it close to your heart.

Stick it on the wall in front of you.

Look at it regularly.

Publicise it to key staff and stakeholders.

The best businesses will show it their customers, happy that their offering justifies the profit and cash they will make.

Most importantly, test every decision and action you take against it.

Creating your One Page Business Plan will be agonising, but the discipline will prove to be the most valuable time in your business development.  Seek the expert support from a business coach or mentor who can help you keep your plans precise and simple to follow.

Straight talking Yorkshire Powerhouse advice!
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