As we all know, you can't chose your family, but...
Your business plan for your Canadian franchisor is your blueprint for success, and it is also something lenders will consider when evaluating your loan application. If you haven't made a business plan before, the process can seem a bit intimidating, even with a template. Your plan will need to be tweaked for your specific needs, but here are six sections every complete plan will have.
This is the part of the plan that will describe the premise of your business and its goals. Include a short description of your franchise's service or product and list all of your objectives. Give the readers and yourself the answers to the important questions here, such as what the growth potential is and how you are going to fill a gap in the marketplace.
The description section of your plan should be a thorough and accurate explanation of the business. There should be information you can use here in the history and overview of the franchisor section of the disclosure document.
In your management summary, you'll list the key management team members. These are the people who will be a significant part of your daily operations, and you should include all their background information and experience, highlighting the parts that are relevant to their roles in your franchise.
Marketing and sales
Generally, it's the franchisor who dictates the marketing and sales tactics. Research your franchisor to see how they target new customers, and explain their advertising and marketing support for franchisees.
This is the tougher part of your business plan. Even though the disclosure document contains financial information about franchisors in your systems, profits often vary by unit. Speak to other franchisees and the franchisor for guidance here, and remember that it's always better to be conservative in your financial estimates.
A sound financial plan will have cash flow statements, a balance sheet, and a profit and loss statement. A lot of this data will be in your disclosure document, including the estimated initial investment. Research other fees and speak to your franchisor to ensure you have the clearest idea possible of your expenses and costs so you plan for enough capital to launch the franchise.
There is no one-size-fits-all formula for a business plan for your franchise, but the elements covered above are fundamental. Keep in mind that your business plan is like a sales document in the sense that it should show how and why you will have a successful franchise.