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Building a business plan help?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by neurotictim, Jun 4, 2012.

  1. neurotictim

    neurotictim Gold Supporting Member

    Since TBers come in all shapes and sizes, I thought I'd see what advice could be found with regard to putting together a business plan.

    I have an idea for a hotel, in a resort area, that's unique without being TOO niche, and I'd like to put together a no-kidding business plan, to actually get my foot in the door to the world of venture capital investors. I have connections to people with the means and business acumen, but I'd rather present them with a professional plan than a vague idea sketched out on a napkin, you know?

    I'm digging around online, and will ultimately end up going to a professional, but does anyone here have experience in business planning? How about the TB small-business owners, any of you have advice?

    Since I'm a veteran, I have options out there through SBA as well, and wouldn't hesitate to take advantage of them, as well.

    (Note: I'm not expecting all the answers to come from TB, I'm just looking for anyone who had experienced this and can inform/warn me of things they wish they had known).

    Thanks in advance.
  2. experimental bassist

    experimental bassist

    Mar 15, 2009
    The basics are pretty simple, prepare a brief "executive summary" of your business idea, know your target customer base, lay out your management/org structure, marketing plan, financial plan, and an educated 5 year projection of where you expect the business to be.

    That's roughly what a business plan will consist of, but you probably already know most of that.

    My advice, REALLY understand the business you are proposing, be enthusiastic about pursuing it, be confident that you can and will make it a reality, and be able to communicate this confidently to your potential financiers/partners.

    Also an organization that you may find helpful is SCORE.


    It's a nonprofit composed of retired execs who help people develop and launch their own businesses. Personal mentoring, advice, and help developing a business plan are given free of charge.

    My wife and myself went through them years ago when we started a small retail business.

    Since you're in Norfolk, here's the link to the Hampton Roads SCORE chapter:


    Good luck! :)
  3. yea, I'm planning on starting a business too. I'll be renting out sheds to people aspiring to live life like the smurfs and hobbits did. Fully furnished :D
  4. ()smoke()


    Feb 25, 2006
    PM me
  5. neurotictim

    neurotictim Gold Supporting Member


    I've submitted some stuff to SCORE, a basic idea at any rate. Hopefully they'll get back to me this week, after I've had more time to flesh out the plan.

    I'm also having a friend of mine in real estate start doing some looking for buildings that would suit my needs, basically just trying to get an idea of the cost of the property. Obviously renovating will be another huge cost, but I figured I should put first things first.
  6. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    Tell me more! How big are these sheds? And are they easily transportable?
    Whats the power situation like?
  7. A couple of questions for you to answer. You don't have to answer them here, but they will come up while you are doing your business plan.

    1. What is different about this hotel (in the resort area)? Ask yourself - "Why would someone stay here instead of the local Hilton Garden Inn?" This isn't to be pessimistic - just asking.

    2. What kind of customer base can you get?

    3. Are there any similar specialty hotels? How are they doing?

    4. What are your operating costs? Energy, utilities, maintenance, housekeeping staff, food staff (if needed), liquor licenses, permits, etc. Any other [DEL]money-drains[/DEL] costs?

    5. What is the capital cost? Are you building a new place? Taking over an existing place? Don't forget you'll need furniture, and miscellaneous stuff for the hotel.

    6. When is the return on investment? I would think that knowing this before you walk into an office would help. Even if it is just a rough calculation.

    7. What are you planning to offer & for how much? How does this compare with services / rental rates of local hotels?

    8. Are you going to franchise / be part of a national chain or be independent? Is there a difference in cash flow analysis?

    Best of luck with your idea - I hope it works out well for you!
  8. oh they're going to be about 10 square feet of floor space and will probably be about 7 feet tall. the power situation....well, that we'll have yet to figure out. we can always try nice large noisy generators, or running out multiple extension cords from an actual house. :D

    for those that want to go in true LOTR style tho, who needs electricity? :D
  9. outyonge


    Jun 4, 2012
    How about the TB small-business owners, any of you have advice?
  10. placedesjardins


    May 7, 2012
    I majored in business management with a specialization in entrepreneurship. There's a lot to create a complete business plan that a person presents to a bank or financier. You'll get all your answers from whoever you are getting your help from.
  11. placedesjardins


    May 7, 2012
    Hmm, sounds like those Japanese hotels where you are sleeping in a tube.
  12. that idea always sort of freaked me out. I mean, how safe is it??

    Then again I haven't gotten my chance to go to Japan.
  13. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    I thinking built in solor/hydro-electric generators, but that only works near a source of moving water.
    We can go solar/wind power for those not near running water.
    Flames and small space dont generally mix well without a few fires.
  14. neurotictim

    neurotictim Gold Supporting Member

    Thanks Chebass88, those are plainly worded versions of questions I've already seen and been fighting with. Lol. I have some good answers, and need to do a TON more, but I'm working on them.

    And 10 square feet of floor space? Like, 5x2 or what? Seems a little... cramped...

    Tell you what guys, if I can make this happen then in a few years I'm going to host one H*** of a GTG - free rooms, free food, all of that. Mark my words, it'll be epic.

  15. neurotictim

    neurotictim Gold Supporting Member

    For those interested, I've got a pretty solid executive summary more or less done, and am starting to get a picture of the financials. At the moment it's still a fuzzy picture, but the research is going pretty well. Several people I've spoken to (confindentially, of course) are pretty excited about this idea, and think it has a lot of merit. Not only that, according to some people "in the know" economically speaking it's looking like I'm in the right time and place to make this happen.

    Of course, that could be a bunch of people blowing smoke up my butt, but they don't seem like the type.
  16. MakiSupaStar

    MakiSupaStar The Lowdown Diggler

    Apr 12, 2006
    Huntington Beach, CA
    Japan is totally safe. Kind of ridiculously safe. The tubes are great. We spent the night in one, just to check it out. I had a tube, and my wife and boy had a tube. There's a little TV, and the bed is pretty comfy. There's usually a communal bathroom that's kept really clean.
  17. placedesjardins


    May 7, 2012
    Oh good, an executive summary, you are working with someone knowledgeable. Good luck.
  18. neurotictim

    neurotictim Gold Supporting Member

    Yeah, and I will quote him here:


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