Executing your business idea
By Mbo Luvindao,
Manager at Bank Windhoek’s Emerging Small and Medium Enterprise Branch
Not all SMEs create jobs, however, especially during the early stages of the venture. By nurturing and encouraging entrepreneurship, we can create an environment to grow informal survivalist businesses into more structured business ventures that could have a longer lifespan and create much needed employment.
Entrepreneurship seen from this point of view, contributes to economic growth, toward empowering women, the youth and disabled members of the community.
I have no doubt that entrepreneurship is key to job creation. I do however believe that there is more that needs to be done to foster an entrepreneurship culture in Namibia. This will enable more SMEs to graduate and become larger business ventures.
The most daunting questions that face entrepreneurs who would want to start a business, are: How do I formalise my business idea? Why is a business plan necessary? What steps are involved in developing a business plan? Where to find help in getting the business started?
Entrepreneurs are often defined as innovators. They are creative and often start a business because of a need or gap they have identified in their communities.
A business idea should come about as a solution to a challenge in a given community or society at large. If the solution is applied efficiently, adopted by the community with ease and subscribed to repetitively, the business will grow. The willingness of the entrepreneur to keep his finger on the pulse and continuously respond to the changing demands of his market will determine the success of the business in the long term.
However, back to basics. Once you have identified a need for a particular service or product, you will most probably come up with a business idea to meet that need. You will then need to formalise your business idea and create a business plan.
What steps are involved in developing a business plan?
A business plan is document that clearly sets out the goals and objectives of your new business and explains how they will be achieved. The plan should also include any anticipated challenges and plans on how these challenges will be overcome. A business plan is a document that states a business’ background, goals and objectives.
It also includes plans for reaching these goals and objectives and plans to overcome challenges. In simple terms, a business plan is a road map that indicates a business’ goals and how the entrepreneur plans on achieving these goals.
The most important thing is that once the plan is completed, the entrepreneur must fully understand it and be able to defend what it states about the business.