If you want your business to run successfully, you need to come up with a business plan. A business plan is an outline you’ll show others that you want to join you as a partner, investor, or any other way. It pitches your business idea to everyone else with the idea of bringing them into the fold with you. This is crucial in your startup endeavor because it helps to show the goals you have for starting your business and what steps you need to take to achieve them; once you’ve finished your business plan, having it will keep you on track and remind you of the goals in the first place.

How do you start creating a business plan, though?

Figure Out Your Purpose

Every business venture needs to have a purpose behind it—one that goes beyond making a profit. Why does your business exist in the first place? Why would employees want to work for your business? What does your business stand for? These are crucial questions to ask yourself because businesses need a stronger foundation than being a means for a profit. Entrepreneurs need to take time out of their day to really consider their business’s purpose. Consider figuring this out by consulting with your team—they’ll be able to bring ideas to the table that you might not have thought of before.

Build Upon Your Vision

Once you’ve figured out your purpose, you need to build upon it. Your goals are what’ll lead you and your business to success, and without this vision, you’ll be more likely to fail. Write out three to five strategies that’ll let you reach this vision before beginning to outline your business plan to give yourself stepping stones toward your goals. You can continue to build upon this vision by writing out a mission statement: state why your business exists, what you’re going to do, how you’re going to accomplish it, and who your business is catering to.

Determine Your Business Model

Business models are how you’ll go about completing your business, and a good business model will include the details of your formal business plan. Like a business plan, your business model should be updated as your business grows so that it projects the realities of your business instead of what you imagined initially.