Is it necessary to create an official, old-school business plan? In our opinion, yes. Do most businesses create one? No! Do most businesses succeed? No! Did we have one? Not exactly. Let me explain.
Our cleaning business was an accidental business, one that I sort of ended up in out-of-the-blue one day, when a fellow worker told me she had been cleaning houses for years and that she kind of missed it. She taught me all about it while we worked our dead end hourly J.O.B (just over broke). I walked into work one day and quit. The next day I began flyering. I had had it with dead end jobs, and I never looked back. For me, it was sink or swim and I have to say, not for everybody. I found it to be scary fun.
Why scary? I am a compulsive planner by nature. I have filled dozens of spiral notebooks with ideas and notes since I started that cleaning business in 1996. I still fill up notebooks, although now I fill up hard drives as well, with compulsive planning. It was risky to step out of that dead end job, but I embraced my anxiety and did it because I had to. And then the fun began.
What we are talking about here is the one and only, intimidatingly professional sounding “Business Plan.” You know, the thing you are supposed to have in your hand as you stroll into the banker’s office in the hopes of getting start-up capitol. Since I had no use for start-up loans (because I had no hope of getting one), it did not even occur to me to go down that route. I’m an out-of pocket DIY-er kind if guy by default. I still build my web business by myself, one page at a time, slow and steady as she goes.
I do think there is incredible value in going through the business plan process for your cleaning service start up, even if you are not attempting to secure a start-up loan. It will force you to get real about what is needed and how to go about implementing it.
The standard & traditional reasons for writing a business plan are to:
What makes a successful business plan?
You need to have a well thought-out idea for your cleaning service. Your business plan should have clear and concise writing and provide evidence of a logical structure to be enacted in the operation of your business. It must show how a profit is possible and how the business will scale over time. It will make clear how management will effectively run the business and the management theory from which the business operates.
How would one start such a process?
You could purchase a book on writing a business plan, but the best option is to use business plan creation software. It is much easier to wade into the waters of a very unfamiliar lake by using software that guides you with instructions as you need them.
The best way to guarantee that you succeed in your cleaning business is to have a well thought out and vetted cleaning business plan in place from which to operate and to review and adjust appropriately as you grow your business.