Let’s face it – the traditional business plan as we know it (or as weknewit) is slowly slowly going away. Or is it? Startups and small businesses move at such lightning pace these days that a static document quickly becomes outdated, but the principals and lessons involved with its creation could be valuable in a new form. Many young entrepreneurs still think a business plan is a must-have cornerstone of their business, but as many venture capitalists have said recently, the traditional business plan is not the end-all be-all for startup success.
– Bijan Sabet, Spark Capital
Don Rainey, general partner atGrotech Venturesand author of the blogVC in DC, suggests startups and VCsmove away from promoting narrative business plans. Plans should instead be fluid, open to change, “inter-relational and organic,” he says.
“The next generation business plan should look more like a GANTT chart or database application than a Word doc or an Excel spreadsheet, and it should be a collaborative, living document,” writes Rainey. “In fact, as a venture capitalist, I ask start ups to give me a project/task oriented view of the first 100 days after funding. This view is better than the prepared business plan for my purposes and infinitely more useful for the entrepreneurs as well.”