For a new practice to succeed, one needs to know where they are going and how they will get there. Creating a business plan forces the setting of goals, determining the resources needed to carry out goals and anticipating problems that might otherwise derail the work.
If the business plan is not being used to solicit financing, an informal plan can be created to serve as a planning tool and a device to stay on track. An informal plan can also be shared with potential partners during recruitment.
There are multiple online resources, software and literature that can support the formulation of a business plan. However, the key elements of a successful business plan include:
- Executive Summary: Provides an overview of the business plan which should include a brief history, snapshot of the practice setup, philosophy and viability.
- Business Description/Overview: Provides the practice’s vision, and includes information about who the practice is, what it will offer, what market needs the practice will address and why the business idea is viable.
- Market Description: Provides an interpretation and research of the existing trends and conditions in the area in which the practice will be located. This can form the basis for marketing and financial plans for the practice.
- Development and Production: Provides a description of the current state of the practice and the plan for continuing or completing its development (eg, hiring staff, buying equipment, leasing space).
- Sales and Marketing: Provides a road map of the strategies and resources that will be employed to generate practice growth.
- Management and Operations: Describes the team that will be gathered to manage the practice, including specific strengths, qualifications and responsibilities of each team member.
- Financial Plans: Documents the viability of the business idea and its soundness as an investment, using specific financial information and risk assessment.
American Academy of Pediatrics