In the previous post on How To Start A Haunted House Business I gave a overview and an exercise for you to do that had the sole purpose of getting your brain turning. The brief overview and exercise should have gotten you thinking outside of the build a maze and scare people realm and into the business perspective of running a large haunt operation or even a small haunt operation. When your doing something to turn a profit in the US you have to make sure you abide by the rules and regulations because once you start making money from something you get everyone interested in what your doing. In this next part I give a overview of a Business Plan and tell you a few basics such as the reasons for having one and what a business plan exactly is.
So lets start with the explanation of a business plan if you are not familiar with it. It is a business roadmap basically. It will be an overall description of your business, it will analyze your business and provide detailed projections for the future. It will cover the financial side of starting, expanding and running your business along with giving you an idea of when you will make a return on your investment.
Why should I have a business plan or spend the time writing one is probably what your thinking now. I am not gonna sugar coat this it is a big undertaking and involves many hours of work. I have done several plans for different business ventures, some have been quick and easy due to the ease of finding information online and others have taken me weeks of research and interviewing to get all the information required but in the end it is so worth it to have a manual to refer to when you need to know what to expect in the next 6 months, how your gonna cover expenses for a given period, what your plans are for growth and how to cover situations like large growth spurts or unexpected incident.
Another very important purpose for a business plan is getting start up capital. If you go in front of anyone rather a banker or angel investor they are gonna want to see this. Investor’s want to see your projected growth and financial forecasts because they want to know they are going to make money on the deal. A business plan shows how the money is going to flow in and out of your business and this is important for you and for investors. I have even come across people interested in investing and I presented the business plan and all they did was flick through the first couple pages but they knew from looking that I had put the time and effort into it and just from seeing it briefly knew I was serious about the undertaking.
The business plan is also useful for playing with numbers and events. By making changes in your forecasts with the various changes you are thinking about making you can see what effect it will have on the overall business and its future. The forecasting from a business plan is very useful and can save you money and make you a lot of money if used properly. By having a plan written out on what your course of action is going to be with your business you are not running blind waiting for events to happen because you already have plans laid out for those events and are prepared for them.
It is proven through studies that new businesses with a business plan are more likely to succeed than a business without. Writing a business plan helps you beat the odds.
There are some things that are beyond the scope of the business plan however that you will have to still deal with. Bookkeeping and accounting systems have to be setup and the choice to hire a professional or do it in house are other choices but are somewhat covered in the management team for the business plan. A business plan normally does not cover taxes either so you will have to setup systems to cover taxes on how they are to be paid and how much they will be. These are just a few of the topics, the list goes on but by having a business plan you are a step ahead of the others who just went out and jumped on the band wagon to own their own business, the difference is you will have a laid out plan for the business while others will just be riding by the seat of their pants.
In the next part of the How to Start a Haunted House Business Part 3 series we will jump in and have you start writing some sections of the business plan out. We plan to cover the basic business description and what is involved in that. Trends and technology and effects they will have. A rough run on the break-even analysis which will have a sales revenue forecast, forecast of fixed costs and gross profits forecasts.