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Business Plan Training 101

Watch the video below or scroll down to read the recap

This class taught by Harold Patterson, a WV Small Business Development Center Certified Business Coach, teaches the basics of creating your own business plan and the key components of what makes a great business plan. We also dive into some of our MyBluefield Entrepreneur's Bootcamp material to help you better understand business plans.

*This training is geared toward our Food Truck Incubator Program participants, but the information is valuable to anyone seeking knowledge on how to create a business plan for a business.


A little on BEDA's MyBluefield Entrepreneur's Bootcamp

BEDA has partnered with My Own Business Institute (MOBI) of Santa Clara University to offer local and regional aspiring and current business owners 100% free online business training. The Bootcamp is self-paced and has two tracks: Starting a Business and Business Expansion. Enrollees can choose one, or both tracks. Some modules include The Business Plan, Financing the Business, Accounting and Cash Flow, Communication Tools, Marketing, Getting your Team in Place, Achieving Lowest Expenses, Vertical Integration, Franchising your Business, Selling your Business, and much more. Upon completion, graduates earn a certificate from Santa Clara University. Since June 5, 2020, BEDA has had over 200 enrollees and 18 graduates.

Anyone interested in learning more or signing up for BEDA's MyBluefield Entrepreneur's Bootcamp courses, click here.


Key Notes from Harold's Presentation:

What can impact small business success?

  1. Lack of planning

  2. Poor credit

  3. Lack of resources

  4. Lack of support

  5. Lack of experience

  6. Poor management skills

  7. Not enough money

  8. Failure to seek outside help

  9. Ignoring the customer

  10. Poor cash management

The following information covers each section of a Business Plan that Harold covered in the class.

Business Plan Executive Summary

Provide a summary of your business by addressing these key areas:

  • Name and Description of Business

  • Targeted Market and Customers

  • Trends in this Industry

  • Value Proposition

  • The Vision

  • Founder Background: Work/Life experience related to the intended business

  • Your Team

  • Goals for business

Name of Your Business

When choosing the name of your business remember:

  • Ensure it's Easy to Pronounce and Remember

  • Avoid Unusual Spellings

  • Make it Unforgettable and Unique

  • Keep It Simple

  • Not Too Descriptive

Describing Your Business

Some of the things to list in your description should be:

  • Business name, location, hours of operation

  • Who are the owners and legal entity

  • Products or services you are selling

  • Is this a new business, seasonal, expansion

  • What are the growth opportunities

  • NAICS Code and Description

Trends in this Industry

An "industry analysis and trends" section in a business plan is a component that provides comprehensive insight into industry conditions and trends that can impact a company's success and growth.

Value Proposition

Value Proposition Definition - an innovation, service, or feature intended to make a company or product attractive to customers. A value proposition is a simple statement that clearly communicates the benefit of the product or service that you promise to deliver to your customers. It's ultimately what makes your product attractive to your ideal customer.


Uber – The Smartest Way to Get Around

Apple iPhone – The Experience IS the Product

LessAccounting – Bookkeeping, Without the Hassle

The Vision

The Vision describes what a company desires to achieve in the long run, generally in a time frame of five to ten years, or sometimes even longer. It depicts a vision of what the company will look like in the future and sets a defined direction for the planning and execution of corporate-level strategies.


BBC: “To be the most creative organization in the world”

Disney: “To make people happy.”

Amazon: “Our vision is to be earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.”

Goals for Business

A business goal is a broad and overarching target or outcome that a business wants to achieve in the short or long term.

The goals of a company frequently fall into four categories:

  • Client or Customer Satisfaction

  • Financial Gain

  • Growth

  • Employee Development

Financing and Financial Projections

Note: Many business owners require the assistance of a bookkeeper, an accountant, or an SBDC Business Coach (like Harold) when completing this section.

Start-Up Checklist – Capital and Expenses

Accounting Statements – Cash Flows, Profits/Loss Statements, Balance Sheets

Analysis of Costs - List and explain the key costs and profit margins

Break-Even Analysis – How much do you need to pay the bills and yourself?

Internal Controls - check signing policy, strategy for controlling shrinkage, and control of incoming merchandise or supplies.

Business Organization

Explain the form of business organization you intend to use and why it is best for your business in this section.

  • Sole Proprietorship

  • Partnership

  • Limited Liability Company

  • S-Corporation

To learn more about Business Organization types, check out our workshop "Going into Business First Steps".


Our Business Training 102 Session is scheduled to take place on March 2, 2023 from 2:30-4:00pm in our Small Business Success Center. Go to our Workshops and Training page underneath our Resources tab to register.


Let's Get in Touch!

Harold Patterson, Certified Business Coach WV Small Business Development Center | | (304) 767-0532

Jim Spencer, Executive Director Bluefield WV Economic Development Authority | | (304) 902-2332 x 2405

Faith Blackwell, Administrative + Marketing Assistant

Bluefield WV Economic Development Authority | | (304) 902-2332 x 2408

Bluefield WV Economic Development Authority Logo (The words "My Bluefield" underneath an outline of the Bluefield, West Virginia Skyline)

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