Vivek is a seasoned entrepreneur who has taken both the bootstrap and funding-driven paths. He teaches entrepreneursship and writes regurlarly for BusinessWeek.
In this article he starts with fallacy of business plans in the Ideation stage. My favorite line: A startup business plan is always a good piece of fiction filled with great ideas. He then goes on to describe the Demo/Sell/Build process from which the business plan emerges.
Very true! I took some sage advice from a friend and crafted a similar approach using a vision document.
This document was short, covered the basics of what I wanted to do but also conveyed the passion and anticipated direction of the company. I threw in a few wireframes and then was off to designing the first version. I treat the vision document as a living document, meaning I update it as I learn more about my market and customers.
I now use the vision document to remind me about why I started the business and where I'm headed. It is easy to forget that in the heat of working on it.
Few, if any, business plans can give you that kind of motivation in the early stages of a startup!
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