It is so fashionable these days to be a “designer” or “launch” yet another magazine in Nigeria. But, before you join the bandwagon, really think through the big picture and take the time to write out what your business should look like. Don’t start a business because Deola or Folake just started theirs. Start a business because you are skilled, experienced, passionate, have done your research and know you can enjoy what you are doing and make a profit from it to sustain you and/your family.
If you want to start a fashion business strictly to make money, you would still want to have an outline of your business i.e. business plan so you know what the present and future earnings of your business could potentially look like.
Why write a business plan?
1. To have a roadmap of your business during its lifespan
2. To have something for your investors (formal and informal) and lenders. Most banks in Nigeria will not give you the time of the day if you approached them for a loan for your business. While there are no guarantees anything would change with a business plan, you definitely stand out from the many who go solicit funds from banks and investors and increase the likelihood you will secure the seed monies you need.
What does a business plan look like?
A basic business plan should have the following :
1. A cover sheet (contact information for the business, owners and corporate officers)
2. Executive Summary (mission statement, date business began, location,description, products)
3. Include a table of contents. This will help your investors or lender navigate through your business plan smoothly.
4. Organizational plan (structure, owners, management profile, board of diredctors)
5. Marketing plan (market analysis, sales, PR, advertising)
6.Financials (historic and progressive)
The above is a basic sketch of the essential details that should be in your business plan. While you might feel lazy to go through all the above, you should really break out of that and get it done because it will make a difference in your success as an entrepreneur.