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Start-Ups

Identifying the Flaws in Your Business Plan

By Garrett Spence   |    May 17, 2016   |    10:32 AM

Learn How to Find and Fix Issues With Your Business Plan

You’ve created a business plan for your startup. You’ve even read it from the perspective of investors, and perhaps you’ve already revised it as your plans change and your business evolves.

No business plan will ever be perfect, and there will always be flaws in every plan you read. While you can’t create the perfect plan, you can put in the work to systematically identify and fix those flaws. Here’s how you can find the flaws and how you can correct them.

Learn about some of the most common business plan mistakes

Do you know some of the most common business plan mistakes? You can’t identify what you aren’t aware of, so review your business plan to see if you notice the following:

  • Spelling and grammatical errors.

  • An inconsistent writing style.

  • The layout of your document is sloppy, with mismatched margins and the like.

  • The plan is vague, incomplete, and doesn’t answer common questions.

  • Alternatively, the plan is too detailed and technical.

  • You don’t include enough, or any, supporting research and data.

  • You deny that there are any risks or competition.

As you review your business plan with the goal of finding it’s flaws, carefully watch for these characteristics. Demonstrate professionalism with proper grammar and a clean presentation. Answer all of the questions that a business plan needs to answer, using relevant data where applicable, and speak truthfully to the risks and competitive landscape in your industry.

Let someone else find the flaws in your business plan

You’ve probably pored over your startup’s business plan for hours on end, and it’s unlikely that you can read your plan with a fresh and unbiased perspective. This is why an extra set of eyes can be so useful when combing through your business plan to find any issues.

Ask a trusted member of your network to review your business plan, specifically looking for any mistakes. You could even show them the list of common errors that were mentioned earlier to guide their review. If your startup is highly technical, you may even want to ask a non-technical person to review your plan.

Why would you want someone who doesn’t understand your industry to review your business plan, though? Because there’s a chance that the investors reading your plan won’t understand all of the small, technical details. If you understand this before important decision makers read your plan then you’ll have a better chance of wowing them with your ideas, and you won’t alienate anyone with jargon.

By understanding the common mistakes that are found in business plans, reviewing your plan on your own, and getting input from other trusted members of your network, you’ll produce a robust business plan that answers investor questions and concerns. The result? More funding, and more startup success.