All businesses need a business plan, so why not write a green business plan?
Writing a green business plan will help pull together your company’s ideas for the future. With a framework to follow you are significantly more likely to make your aspirations a reality.
On top of this, a green business plan is a fantastic resource to present to potential investors. They will be impressed with your foresight and may be more interested to invest in a sustainable future.
Consumers are also looking for sustainable brands to spend their money with. It does not matter if you are a company like quantum ai, or Macdonald’s customers want to feel they are doing their part in saving the environment.
So, here are 8 steps to take when putting together a green business plan:
Searching for ‘business plan templates’ on Google may be a good start for what to include on a business plan, but it is obvious to any investor when you follow a template. If you want to wow your investors scrap the template and put your excitement for your green business on the page.
Let’s be honest, not every investor is going to read your plan page to page. This is the purpose of an executive summary and it is the perfect introduction for your green business plan. You need to use this to create a hook, it would not hurt to say how many investors you already have attracted.
Highlight your risk management
Every investor does know the risk of investing in a new business. Which is where risk management comes in. Investors also know that sustainable entrepreneurs might get caught up in sustainability and forget about the business. By showing your risk management you are proving you are not a gung-ho environmentalist, but a businessperson.
Do some market analysis
Many a business has fallen due to their lack of understanding of the market they are joining. As with the previous point, it is easy to get wrapped up in the environmental agenda and skipping this important step can finish your business before it starts. Everything you write about needs to be backed up with evidence from market analysis. Creating a green business plan blind, without any market research will not end well.
It is not to say that you should not include any technical language. However, jargon fuelled business plans will alienate investors. Your business plan should be easy to read. It should also be easy to understand. An investor needs to understand what they are investing in. If you do use jargon, explain what it means.
Don’t be intimidated
Your first business plan can be an intimidating prospect. The blank piece of paper staring back at you does not appear that it will take over your life for the next 5 years. Once you get going the words will flow. Start with a basic structure of what your business plan needs, then build from there. You can always go back and make some amends, but first, you need to get something down!
Sustainability is the core
Every step of your green business plan should have sustainability at its centre. All your decisions should focus on sustainability and if that is not reflected in your plan you might have a problem. If you set your business up as environmentally friendly there is nothing worse than consumers discovering that you are not. Your green business needs to be beyond reproach. Be the paragon of sustainable business your customers want you to be.
It will almost certainly change
Personal plans change, and so do business plans. Do not get hung up on one idea, every market can be volatile. Look at the last few years, the pandemic changed every business. Don’t worry about it and be adaptable.