Many people write to ask where they can find a consulting business plan template. Well, here’s a free outline of a consulting business plan template. It’s just an outline, though – see here for my full business plan kit, which includes the actual materials I use to help clients with their business plans.
- Executive Summary
- Business Overview
- Products & Services
- Sales & Marketing Plan
- Operating Plan
- Management and Organization
- Action Plan
- Financial Plan
- Investment Opportunity
- Personal Financial Statements
- Financial Statements
Having run a business and marketing consulting firm for most of my career, I’ve written countless business plans. Every last one of them counts, though. While I’m not someone who would ever tell you that you must follow your business plan to the letter – it’s a roadmap, not a jail term – I do believe that having a good sense of direction for your business is important. For most people, the process involved in developing a business plan is actually more important than the output. All the work and thought involved in figuring out where you’re headed is what will really drive your business.
With that in mind, if you are looking for a consulting business plan template, you want one that is easy to customize around your own business. Otherwise, if you follow a pre-written, off-the-shelf plan, how will you stand out from the competition? Your business plan, while following a prescribed template, should help create a business that is unique, sustainable and achievable.
At the same time, it’s no good to have a plan that just sounds pretty. Ideally, your business plan helps you set up the systems you need to get traction and growth in your business. That means creating systems for engaging and retaining profitable clients, operating your business and more.
In the meantime, it’s still okay to start exploring the kind of business you want to start, the marketing you want to do and the fees you want to set. You can start on your business while working on your business plan, if you want.