Online College Courses for Credit

The Business Plan

The Business Plan

Author: Rob Eubanks

Identify the elements of a business plan.

ID benefits of having a business plan.

See More
Fast, Free College Credit

Developing Effective Teams

Let's Ride
*No strings attached. This college course is 100% free and is worth 1 semester credit.

47 Sophia partners guarantee credit transfer.

299 Institutions have accepted or given pre-approval for credit transfer.

* The American Council on Education's College Credit Recommendation Service (ACE Credit®) has evaluated and recommended college credit for 33 of Sophia’s online courses. Many different colleges and universities consider ACE CREDIT recommendations in determining the applicability to their course and degree programs.


Video Transcription

Download PDF

[MUSIC PLAYING] Onward we move into building a private practice. So in this session, we'll cover the following-- first, benefits of having a business plan, next, building a business plan, market analysis, and SWOT analysis. So having a business plan is essential. Let's first define what this thing is before we dive deeper into it, though.

A business plan is a plan that outlines business goals and details how the goals will be achieved. Values, vision statement, mission statement, and business strategy are the backbone of a stable business plan. Now, the business plan is more detailed than the vision, mission, and business strategies and includes more information about the business and the surrounding market.

Business plans are necessary to secure loans and investments. They also provide a path toward growth and help ensure the future of your business. They detail financial startup costs and potential revenue. They provide an analysis of the market as well as strategies for success based on need and competition. Within a business plan, you'll find such details as where your clients are coming from, how are they going to pay, what your costs are, how much you need to make to meet your goals.

So there are many different ways to construct a business plan. And different business plans include different elements. Many elements of business plans can be found online, and reviewing various templates can be helpful. So business plans generally include the following-- a description of how one's company is different from other companies, financial figures about the business, data about the business, information about the surrounding area or location, a marketing analysis, a SWOT analysis or identification of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, a description of strategies that will be utilized to fulfill the plan.

OK, so let's go back to market analysis for a minute, as this is a critical piece of your business plan. A marketing analysis is an analysis of the market in which the business exists. A market analysis can include information about the following-- information about the market, size of the market, special characteristics of the market, percent of the market you expect to gain, pricing, regulatory restrictions, competition, barriers to entry into the market. Important note here, folks-- private practice is a needs-based business, so you want to be sure that you're in a location and market where need for your services exists. It can be helpful to talk to individuals with knowledge of the population in need of services in the area, such as doctors, other mental health professionals, or related professionals.

Business plans also include SWOT analysis, as I mentioned earlier. SWOT analysis is an analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. It may be written as list where strengths and weaknesses are compared and opportunities and threats are compared. Strengths and weaknesses tend to be internal to the company, and opportunities and threats tend to be external to the company.

So here's an example. I understand that I have blank strength to combat blank threat. And thus, the strategy I would use is blank.

So to fill in those blanks, I have financial backing, which places me ahead of the competition, who does not. So, I can advertise aggressively. So here's what we covered in this lesson-- benefits of having a business plan, building a business plan, marketing analysis, SWOT analysis.



(00:00-00:59) Introduction

(01:00-01:40) Benefits of a business plan

(01:41-02:20) Building a business plan

(002:21-03:38) Marketing Analysis

(03:39- 04:35) SWOT analysis

(04:46-:04:56) Summary