It might sound disappointing but, actually, not all students have the bright and interesting life after they graduate. Most of them find themselves stuck in the offices doing jobs they don’t like much and not getting enough money.
However, this doesn’t mean that it will be the same way for you. You are able to build the life you want as well as create the career of your dreams – but you have to prepare to work hard to achieve this.
We’re not going to advise you what you should do to earn yourself a living – that’s up to you to decide. However, if you want to be independent, able to do what you want, and to be in control of your life, we suggest you try to become an entrepreneur. This way you’ll create a business opportunity for yourself instead of trying to find someone who’ll do it for you.
Of course, it isn’t easy – and it shouldn’t be. Creation of your own business requires a lot of work and a thorough preparation. The more prepared you are, the better it is for you – and that’s why you need to create a proper business plan.
How should a good business plan look like?
Actually, not all people have a clear plan when they start their own business. However, if you want to make the whole process as smooth as possible as well as ensure that you’ll be able to succeed in a chosen sphere, you really need one. A good business plan helps people avoid different roadblocks, count initial investments, and get a clear vision of a future business.
Basically, a good business plan writing for your future career is a summary of your business. It answers the following questions:
– What your business is about?
– What do you need for its development?
– How should it look like in the future?
Of course, it all might seem too unclear for a beginner entrepreneur – that’s why a certain timeframe is a must. We advise making this timeframe big enough but not too big at the same time – a period of 12-24 months would be enough.
What do you need to include in the plan?
To make your strategy as clear as possible, you have to include the following things:
– Your marketing objectives and goals. One of the best examples of such goals is the number of customers you want to gain: think of the minimal number you’ll have at first and try to imagine how many of them you want to gain by the end of a certain period;
– Your financial goals and other financial information. This includes investments, your profit, your potential losses, as well as approximate sales details;
– Information needed for your business to function smoothly. This includes all the important details, such as the location of your business, a list of things and equipment you need, your potential suppliers, and so on;
– A schedule. It’s better to tailor your goals to the certain dates: this will allow you to measure the success of your business more effectively.
While you might not want to think about it now, it is also good to come up with an emergency plan. If you know how you’re going to react in most of the possible critical situations, it’ll be easier for you to handle them.
Now you know what is needed in order to come up with a successful business strategy. However, this still doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to create one smoothly once you try, especially if you didn’t deal with such things before. But don’t worry – we are here to help you, offering 5 important tips to write an amazing business plan!
Use the resources you have on campus.
Being a student, you probably don’t have much real entrepreneur experience. However, what you have is an opportunity to learn and receive advice from more experienced people – your professors, career counselors, and so on.
These people not only have the experience you might find impressive but they also have something even more important – connections. Some of them might use their networking resources to help you make your dream come true.
Another good thing to try while you are still on campus is a business center (or an entrepreneurship center). Many universities have them these days and they are an important source of knowledge for any student wanting to become an entrepreneur after graduation. People working there can help you to create a nice business plan as well as teach you some other useful tricks.
Use SMART targets.
You’ve probably heard about these targets: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. Using them is very important if you want to make your business plan to not only look good but also to be as effective as possible.
These targets are good for writing a business plan because they help you set more realistic goals as well as come up with a right schedule. Beginners often overestimate or underestimate themselves, so SMART targets can help to avoid that.
The best way to become more experienced in a field of interest is to try working there. However, not all future graduates are willing to walk that path, especially when they already have a clear understanding of what they want to do. That’s why an internship is a good option for many students – it is usually quite short-termed compared to the ordinary job. At the same time, it allows you to not only understand how the business works but also talk to the people who’ve already succeeded in it. This might seem challenging, but successful people are usually open to sharing their experience with ambitious future entrepreneurs.
(Editors Note: It is the view of the editor that this is one of the best things that a graduate can do; particularly if they are unsure about what they want or only want to start a business because they don’t know what else to do. Use an internship opportunity to read and learn as much as you can as well as network with as many good people as you can. You really can pick anything you are curious about doing. School and college conditions you to think in certain tram lines, but in the real world, you really can pursue your intuition!)
Be careful with resources.
One of the biggest mistakes future graduates can make when writing a business plan is fail with planning the resources effectively enough. You have to find out exactly how much time, energy, and money you will need in order to achieve a certain goal, otherwise your business might end badly despite the thorough planning.
It’s good to know not only how much resources you’ll need but also how you’ll be able to allocate them to achieve a certain goal. Yes, if you aren’t experienced, you probably don’t know this for sure. But even in this case, it’s wiser to settle for fewer resources than for more.
Don’t forget to review.
So, you’ve finished your business plan – that’s great! However, this doesn’t mean that your work with it is done. You have to review it constantly in order to be sure that you achieve all your goals as well as do it on time.
Choosing an interval is up to you: you could do it every two weeks, every month or two, etc. However, be sure that intervals aren’t too long – otherwise, you might not have enough time to adapt your business plan to an existing situation.
As you see, while the process of creating a good business plan might seem too challenging, it still isn’t impossible. Moreover, if you are still a student, this means you are lucky enough to use all surrounding resources in order to learn and develop entrepreneurial skills.
We wish you good luck with that and hope that you’ll be able to create a bright future for yourself by starting a successful business!