The title of this article assumes you have actually created a business plan at some point. Though truth be told, many small business owners never do. And even in large organizations where strategic plans are an annual tradition, leaders often put them on the shelf once it’s done. Why do we fail to create one or get a divorce when we do?

1.You’re too busy. You once created a business plan… and it was a torturously long and draining process. Let’s start out with a recommended resource for creating a business plan: The One Page Business Plan. These are inexpensive books and accompanying disks, with versions available for Business Owners, Executives with Management Teams, Non-Profits, and Entrepreneurs among others. They’ve been endorsed by Tom Peters, CNN and O Magazine among others. Just looking at a one page plan makes the task less daunting than the standard 15-page documents.

2.The whole premise smacks of making a commitment. This concept sounds patently ridiculous on the surface, but the truth is that most of us like some wiggle room. Once you sit down and really think through strategies and have them documented on paper, you’re compelled to execute them. You may be worried that you don’t have exactly the right strategies. Does it mean you’re not smart enough to run your business? Well, most of us do get some of it wrong. And we need to keep revising the plan and the strategies in reaction to what works and what doesn’t work.

3.It can bring up as many questions as it answers. If you are doing it right, it will raise a lot of questions. Questions are good. They refine our thinking. The fact that you know it will raise questions means that you already know there are questions you need to be addressing. Let’s get them out on a piece of paper and out where they can be acted upon.

4.You’re afraid you can’t move forward unless you have all the answers. You don’t have to have all the answers to begin executing the plan. Some of the questions can be put to the side to be answered later. You will still be better off to document what you need to do. You can move forward without all the answers.

5.It’s just daunting. If the thought of this is making you want to crawl under a rock, then it is time to hire an Executive Coach or Consultant to help you. In a couple hours, you can make substantial process. Sometimes having a trusted advisor guide you through the process is invaluable in not only getting it completed, but in bringing in a fresh perspective.
It’s time to drop the old stories and beliefs about your Business Plan. They aren’t serving you or your business. Make plans to recommit to your Business Plan today!

Author's Bio: 

Ann Potts is a Strategic Executive Coach & Motivational Consultant who helps business owners and leaders find powerful professional focus that increases work production and quality of life. She brings more than 25 years of successful corporate leadership, communication, and change expertise to support and empower her clients. Ann's ability to continuously improve results was recognized by GE through certification as a Six Sigma Black Belt. Read more about Ann and her services at