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Chris LoCurto


March 31, 2014

Business Plan Budget and Action Plan

March 31, 2014 | By | 4 Comments">4 Comments

We’ve been in a series on business plans and have covered Why You Should Write A Business PlanBusiness Plan Mission And VisionBusiness Plan Goals and Selling Strategies and Business Plan: Open Door Phase. Today’s blog on budgeting and creating an action plan is the final post of the series., Chris LoCurto, Business Plan, how to write business plan, small business plan, business plan budget, business plan action step, business plan of action, action plan, why you need business plan, creating business plan, business plan 101, start business, start-up business, start-up plan, business budget


Business Plan Budget

“Is there anyone here who, planning to build a new house, doesn’t first sit down and figure the cost so you’ll know if you can complete it? If you only get the foundation laid and then run out of money, you’re going to look pretty foolish.” ~ Luke 14:28

A business plan isn’t complete unless you have a solid understanding of how much it’s going to cost to run the business. All too often I see entrepreneurs set out to build a business on a great idea, with no clue if they can pull it off financially. This usually leads to a great deal of stress, loss of money, strain on relationships, etc.

While I’m usually the first person to celebrate with you about your great idea (High I and D personality style), I’m also going to be the first to push you to process through every possible income and expense of your new venture. Desperate doesn’t sell!

Here are some things to think about adding to your business plan budget:

  • Products, production costs and unit costs
  • Salaries, commissions, subcontractor fees
  • Advertising, marketing, sales expenses
  • Legal and professional fees for getting the business started
  • Office supplies to get up and running
  • Rent and utilities of any needed business space
  • Travel expenses

These are just some of the things that people don’t think to budget when starting a business or project. For a more detailed process, check out my podcast and blog on budgeting called Budget Correctly or Fail! It’ll give you a really good idea of HOW to budget correctly for your business.

Action Plan

The final step of the business plan is to create an Action Plan. Once we have all of the previous details (see additional posts mentioned above) and a budget, we need to know what it looks like to deliver the product or provide the service. In other words, when we’ve completed all of the previous steps:

  • What will the first 90 – 180 days of business look like?
  • How are we accomplishing the goals we set?
  • What are the KRA’s of those involved?
  • What are the performance indicators?
  • What do we change if we’re not hitting our performance indicators?

Having an action plan that answers these questions proves the business has thought through each element and is ready to rock.

I also like to have a section at the end of each business plan to keep track of what we learned while implementing the plan. Considering answering follow-up questions like this after the first 90 days:

  • What surprised us?
  • What were we not prepared for?
  • What didn’t work?
  • What did we not think through?
  • Where did we under or over budget income, expenses, time, etc.?
  • What else have we learned?

This will not only help adjust the plan as we go, but it’s a phenomenal way to see how we process information and ask the questions. Did we do a good job thinking through everything?

Lastly, what does phase two of this process look like, if there is one, which I highly recommend. What does the roll out of a second product or service look like (knowing it won’t launch for quite awhile).

Processing through all of this information will help you to make key decisions about going forward with your business or project.

Question: What areas of a business plan would you add?

  • Davinallan

    I can quote a long list of books that talk about how the business world is getting more and more complex, chaotic and moving at ever increasing pace. (“funky business”, “future files”, “break from the pack”, to name a few). Combine that with information overload and you can see why a three-year business plan document is completely pointless.

    -Planning is guessing

    -Plans let the past drive the future

    -Plans are inconsistent with improvisation

    -Decide on what you are going to do this week, not this year

    -Ignore the details, focus on the big picture

    -Your estimates suck; break things into smaller things (weeks vs. years)

    For more details visit :

  • Carla MusarraLeonard

    This is exactly what I need! I am working on a Business Development Plan right now. At this point, I am a solopreneur, and my name is on just about every box in my org chart. The only thing is that I haven’t officially launched yet. I am still working on sourcing my fabrics for my lingerie line, and since this is a new field for me, I am not quite sure how to proceed regarding the unexpected expenses. I don’t know what I don’t know!

    As I am typing this, I am kind of getting an idea of what I need to do: ask my production team lead for a list of all those “unexpected” expenses. Ha! Would you look at that? This post already helped me take the next step :)

    Thanks Chris for this post.

    • Chris Meyerson

      While I love Chris and what he dose and follow him like a hawk and will more then likely get a professional restraining order from him.. Another place of inspiration for my ideas recently has been Gary Vaynerchuk dealing with Social Media..

  • Zechariah Newman

    Great post Chris. I learned this the hard way. When we opened are second location I almost lost everything because I didn’t budget correctly on construction costs and took out loans.

    We took a loan out to buy the building, took part of the construction on loan, and had a shady contractor not pay subs for 40,000.

    A big mess that could have been avoided with patience (not taking loans) and diligence (inspecting our expectations) Took us two years to clean up the mess.

    Budgeting slows us down so we can speed back up. Thanks agian for this