Small Business Operations

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Student Name:
Worksheet for developing your
PRODUCT/SERVICES
Component of your Business Plan
This worksheet will allow you to compile your general company description as well as your
products and services information based on a series of questions. This worksheet is not meant
to be your plan segment, but a vast source of compiled information you will draw from in order to
write your business plan. Type your information within the textbox located underneath each
question posed.
Your General Company Description
Purpose: The purpose of the General Company Description is to give a brief overview of the
company and answer the question of what business you are truly in. To get at the heart of this,
answer the following questions:
What is the name of your business? What business will you be in? What will you do? (Are
you a start up? If not what is your history and achievements have you had to date?)
Mission Statement: (You are required to have a mission statement for this project)
What is your vision or your general company goals for the company?
(Company Goals: Goals are destinations—where you want your business
to be. For example, a goal might be to have a healthy, successful company that is a leader
in customer service and that has a loyal customer following.) What is your business
philosophy: (What is important to you in business?)
To whom will you market your products? What customers will you serve? (State it briefly
here—you will do a more thorough explanation in the Marketing Plan section).
Describe your industry. (Be sure to also identify whether you are in manufacturing,
retailing or service industry) Is it a growth industry? (Do more than “yes” or “no”!) What
changes do you foresee in the industry, short term and long term? How will your
company be poised to take advantage of them?
Describe your most important company strengths and core competencies. What factors
will make the company succeed?
What do you think your major competitive strengths will be as a company? What
background experience, skills, and strengths do you personally bring to this new
venture? (This should be brief—a summation—as you will be going into more detail in
your market research plan.)
Your Product/Service
Purpose: The Products / Services Plan details the total bundle (product and service) offered
to the customer. As implied by the title, this section discusses the products and/or services to be
offered to customers. This should be an in depth description. Any innovative features should be
identified and patent protection, if any, explained. In many instances, of course, the product or
service may be similar to that offered by competitors—for example, starting an electrical
contracting firm. This section should clearly show customers what you have and convince them
to choose your business. Any special features should be clearly identified. Important questions
to be answered in this section of the plan include:
Provide an in depth description of the product(s) that you are offering. Consider these
questions when answering:
 What product and service are being offered?
 What makes up the total bundle?
 What does the product look like?
 What are the unique characteristics of the product and service?
 What are its special advantages?
Describe what factors relating to your products and service will give you a competitive
advantage or disadvantage. Consider these questions when answering:
 What makes this firm’s product and service superior?
 How does this benefit the customer?
 How does the product or service compare with the products or services of
competitors?
Describe your evaluation of risk, stability, growth and expansion of your product
offerings. Consider these questions when answering:
 What additional products or services are being contemplated?
 What legal protection applies - patents, copyrights, or trademarks?
 What government regulatory approval is needed? (i.e., do you need a restaurant
license? Commercial construction license? )
 What are the dangers of obsolescence of your current product offerings?
 What dangers are related to style or fashion change?
 What are there risks involved in selling this product?
 Ideas to relieve the reader’s mind about the risks.
 How has the product been tested or evaluated?
Sources:
GRADING Summary (50 points):
 Grading of the worksheets will based on breadth, depth and reliability of information.
 Worksheets will be WORD PROCESSED and submitted via Blackboard to the instructor.
 Worksheets will cite the source(s)
 Worksheets need not be in a report format. However, proper spelling and word usage
are required. The worksheet information should be presented in a logical format.
However keep in mind that the less you do now the more you will need to do at the end.
Worksheet grades will be reduced for lack of content.
 Keep in mind that worksheets will be scanned using the SafeAssign plagiarism software.
Plagiarized business plan documents will receive a zero. Therefore, be absolutely sure
that you are creating your plan with your own words.