What exactly is a business plan anyway?

Another client question on Tuesday’s call-in day – “Chris – how do I create a business plan when I’ve never done it before?”
I asked what research he had done so far:
1. had a look on the internet at downloadable packages;
2. had a look in a local PC store at off-the-shelf packages:
3. had a look at his local bookstore.
He was bewildered and confused by the choices.
This client has been in my core dental programme for 3 years.
So I asked him the following questions:
1. have you written a 3-year vision statement?
2. have you created personal and professional cash flow forecasts?
3. have you written operational systems for the practice?
So I shared with him a formula:
Vision + Cash Flows + Systems = Business Plan
He had already written it – he just didn’t realise that those disparate pieces of paper could be joined together.
So, relieved that he has done 80% of the work, he is now off to polish his business plan.


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Chris Barrow

Chris Barrow has been active as a consultant, trainer and coach to the UK dental profession for over 20 years. As a writer, his blog enjoys a strong following and he is a regular contributor to the dental press. Naturally direct, assertive and determined, he has the ability to reach conclusions quickly, as well as the sharp reflexes and lightness of touch to innovate, change tack and push boundaries. In 2014 he appeared as a “castaway” in the first season of the popular reality TV show “The Island with Bear Grylls”. His main professional focus is as Coach Barrow, providing coaching and mentorship to independent dentistry.