Guide to business planning
iSmooth in the kitchen

Good business plans provide an overview of your business objectives and the financial forecasts for your enterprise.

Business planning helps you set out clear goals, define your business ideas and outline the ways in which you will measure progress going forward. It’s also an easy way to spot potential issues.

As a social business, your business plan will differ slightly in focus from that of a more conventional business.  The key aspects included in it, however, will remain the same.

How to write a business plan for a social enterprise?

There will be more information relating to the social purpose of the enterprise compared to a commercial business plan. This does not mean that the treatment of the financial and return on investment can be any less rigorous.

Use your business plan to showcase the social purpose or social return on investment as the additional features of an otherwise profitable and effective business.

The legal form and governance of social businesses often suit the involvement of stakeholders such as employees, customers and the community as well as the more common stakeholders (e.g. owners and shareholders). The business plan needs to reflect this, explaining the structure and governance in clear, concise terms.

Business plan checklist - getting started

You will find similarities and differences between the many guides and templates available on the internet.  Adopt the ideas that work best for you and use a writing style that you are comfortable with.

Although there are no hard and fast rules about structuring a business plan, there are some elements that all guides and templates include, such as financial projections and product/service descriptions. Start with these and build up the plan with elements specific to your business.

Use our business planning resources as a starting point:

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Social business help and support from Business Wales

Business Wales offers a wealth of information, advice and guidance for business owners. Below, we’ve listed some useful resources for your social business planning.