Luxury Coach & Transportation

April 2019

Magazine for the professional limousine, charter and tour industry.

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LUXURY COACH & TRANSPORTATION APRIL 2019 31 APRIL 2019 M ost business owners claim to have a business plan, and many think they do. However, many don't write it down and document specific components of their plans. If your "plan" is in your head, does it really count? I would say not. All About The End Game Building your business plan challenges you to voice the main points of your company's mission and how you envision ap- plying them to the market you are pursuing. This blueprint also must consider your company's overall financial situation. This blueprint should prompt you to define goals and suc- cesses, and establish an "end-game" so each action, strategy, and decision you make reflects this basic rationale. Finally, the blueprint should cause you to be honest about yourself and what you hope for and fear as you lead the com- pany toward achieving its end-game. Most small business owners just go to work every day and act/react with no plan. That's why so many businesses fail. 1: Create A Business Outline What does your company do? Why are you doing it (this is the most important question)? Who is critical in carrying out your business? When will your business be deemed a success? How will you measure the success? Think of it this way: How would you explain your business to a stranger? Start with the basics. What's your mission? 2: Understand Your Financial Condition • Know your current and projected cash on hand (in excess of liabilities) • Borrowing and funding capability (line of credit, friends, family, investors) • Cash flow from operations • What are and will be the best ways to use financial resources? 3: Identify Market Opportunity • What is the best way to address it? • What are the most efficient ways to acquire new customers? • Are there problems in your marketplace you can solve? Before you conduct market research, make a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis of your company. 4: Invest Into Sustaining Client Relationships Know your churn rate: How many customers and related revenue did you lose last year? How much profit do they rep- resent? Think about your strategy to keep clients. If you lack one, create it. Do everything you can to keep customers. 5: Know Your Three Most Important Company Values These must support your mission. What are the values you started your company on? Why should someone use your business? Identify three points that separate you from every- one else. Understand and leverage them. 6: Determine The Best Way To Organize Your Company You have to carry out your business efficiently to generate constant profits. Start with a personal goal for what you want to achieve this year. That goal will affect the people you hire, vehicles you buy/sell, and financials. 7: Identify Your Information Systems • Which ones are in place and being used? • Operations data • Relevant data on business performance • Important client data Use QuickBooks to create a profit and loss statement monthly. Without a P&L, you don't have a balance sheet, and without a balance sheet, you don't know the health of your company. 8: Create Your Profile As A Leader A profile should include age, business experience, primary career success and setback, overall long-term goal, how you react to stressful situations, how you handle success, and how you manage people. 9: Identify Your Most Unique Service Attributes What are some standout offerings of your transportation service? It's not about what you have, but what you DO that one-ups your competitors. Identify and do it every day. 10: Identify Your Greatest Opportunity What is your most troubling threat and how do you plan to overcome it if it presents itself? Taking time to think, plan, and write down your business plan will change your life. Profit Motives BILL FAETH | bill@limogrowth.com Small fleet operators generally don't have them, but if you want to run lean and grow, a guide will push your company to excel. BILL FAETH is the founder of Limo University (www.LimoGrowth.com), Inbound Marketing Agents (www.inboundmarketingagents.com), and 23 additional startups, including Silver Oak Transportation of Nashville, Tenn. As a successful former operator and active advocate for the industry, Bill continues to invest into educating and training operators on how to grow, manage and sustain a more profitable business. You can reach Bill at bill@limogrowth.com. By Bill Faeth Why You Should Write A Business Plan

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