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Starting a business involves a lot of planning. Eminent Dubai-based operational management consultant Francois Dumontel says, ''As obvious as it may sound, a good plan is still the best way to turn your vision into a realistic and coherent business as long as it covers some fundamental rules.''
For starters, Dumontel recommends creating a mission statement defining short-term goals and priorities. Furthermore, having a clear picture of your industry, customers, competitors and market conditions allows you to develop a budget. In the beginning, however, the numbers are not likely to reflect reality.
On the importance of focusing on competition, he believes that it can be a great source of information about what works and what does not. However, you should not model your business after the competitors. The all-important question to be asked is: ''What makes you unique and what value will your company add to the existing setup?''
Perhaps the most fundamental golden rule that lies at the heart of the most effective business plan is that success does not happen without taking risks. Dumontel stresses that within your business plan, you should anticipate possible changes reflecting the real challenges and include a variety of scenario to meet those challenges.
''There is no secret formula but adapting to change requires you to accept that you might have to modify or even abandon business practices that worked well in the past,'' Dumontel concludes.
• A business plan must include elements of fun
• Determine your objectives and financial needs
• Have expectations including possible downfalls
Source: Sana Quadri, Special to Classifieds, gulfnews.com
The writer is a freelancer