SUMMARIZING YOUR BUSINESS PLAN
There are many variations of name as well as content to the Lean Canvas, Business Canvas or similar. Broadly each attempts to summarise a proposition succinctly on one page
Typically it aims to articulate the key elements of a business for investors.
- Value proposition: What problem do your customers have and how are you going to solve it for them?
- Customer relationships: How will you communicate and build rapport with your customers? Each instance of communication should further promote your product or brand as a solution to a particular problem.
- Customer segments: What people and organizations do you create value for? List them out.
- Channels: At what points do you interact with customers to deliver value? How are they purchasing your product? It should be easy for customers to say “yes” to your solution!
- Key partners: What individuals, businesses, or other entities do you rely on to deliver your product to customers? These might be distributors, suppliers, etc.
- Key activities: What activities are absolutely essential to create, deliver, and promote your product? Those are your key activities.
- Key resources: What resources do you need to create, deliver, and promote your product? If it’s not essential, it’s not a key resource.
- Cost structure: How much will you spend on key resources, partners, and activities? That’s roughly how much it will cost you to run your business.
- Revenue streams: How will customers purchase your product and how much will it cost them? Is it a one-time purchase or subscription-based?
Here is business canvas applied to Google.
- Key partners, e.g. Adsense network partners
- Key activities, e.g. manage massive IT infrastructure
- Key resources, e.g. IT infrastructure, intellectual resources
- Value Propositions, e.g. free search engine, targeted ads
- Customer Relationships, e.g. dedicated sales for large accounts
- Customer segments, e.g. internet users, developers
- Channels, e.g. global sales and support team
- Cost structure, e.g. sales & marketing costs, admin costs
- Revenue streams, e.g. ad revenues
Here is lean canvas applied to Uber.
- Problem, e.g. difficult to find a cab when you need it
- Solution, e.g. guaranteed fast pick-up from your location
- Key metrics, e.g. apps installed, journeys booked
- Unique value proposition, e.g. taxi service, but cheaper, easier and safer
- Unfair advantage, e.g. high brand awareness
- Channels, e.g. friend referrals
- Customer segments, e.g. young, internet-savvy Londoners and tourists
- Cost structure, e.g. marketing, PR
- Revenue streams, e.g. 25% of fare based on route and idle time.
I find using such a structure, and keeping it to one page of A3 is challenging but worthwhile thinking tool for solopreneurs and small businesses, as it is also for innovation teams and product development. There is no correct way to do this and I encourage clients to customise to suit their own needs.
A3 LEAN CANVAS (BUSINESS)
This was my canvas when I started my business. It is not perfect and many things have changed along the way, but it has helped me gather my thinking and sometimes is a prompt to check performance and progress.
THE POWER OF TESTIMONIALS
As much as it is important to be clear about your message to the world, success is generally based what people (customers, colleagues, clients) say about you. I think it is really useful to ask “What would a good testimonial say”, this them really helps to focus on what the customer wants, needs, values and will say about you. Even better, once you are up-and-running seek testimonials and feedback.
What Clients Say…
- Tim’s style, manner and pragmatic approach has been very valuable. His contribution will have a positive and lasting effect on the way we work as a team. [AH 2020]
- Tim’s approach will always help you explore and reveal more options and solutions. Tim knows how to motivate and guide you to find and achieve your goals. His ideas and way of thinking are built to help you eliminate any challenges you might face. Happy to have worked with him and would warmly recommend to anyone. [Cosmin Saltan 2020]
- Tim’s passion and commitment has helped drive through a number of process improvements. He regularly seeks to challenge the norm, is innovative in his thinking and actively seeks to help others identify solutions to issues and problems across all business functions. Tim is a pleasure to work with and someone I trust to deliver. [MH 2017]
- It’s great working with Tim, it took me a few sessions to understand that there was almost nothing he couldn’t help on. He’s encyclopaedic on concepts that aid all areas of working life. His ability to be a head of the conversation creates a clear and effective pathway for any idea or challenge that is presented to him. He helped me with understanding the potential of myself, improved how i communicate and manage information, whilst maintaining a deep integrity for detail and complexity. Like with all excellent educational experiences my first thought is, how I wish more people can access it. He’s helped specifically in two areas, to present a systems approach methodology to a governmental group, and to rationalise my ideas for a small food business that I am a director of. [IH 2020]
- Tim Rogers (Adapt Consulting) is an enthusiastic and knowledgeable business partner. He is able to distil complex matters into simple tasks. He is practical with advice and responsive to business needs with a clear focus on helping achieve the businesses objectives. [RW 2020]
- Tim Rogers independent and external view provided an excellent sounding-board and some practical challenges to the delivery of the IT Strategy and the development of the Service Delivery Plan and related Key Performance Indicators. What was particularly helpful was the use of a coaching and collaborative style that kept us in the driving seat, but allowed us to call on Tim’s experience at strategic intervals. We believe this allowed is to achieve on 6 weeks what might otherwise have taken 6 months. [MO 2020]
HELPING PEOPLE AND ORGANISATIONS WITH TOOLS, TIPS, TRAINING
The above can easily be done alone in a room, but my experience is that it is best developed in partnerships with colleagues, clients, customers or maybe a coach or consultant since this provides the necessary challenge and ensures clarity and coherence.
Coaching is a process that aims to improve performance and focuses on the ‘here and now’ rather than on the distant past or future. Good coaches believe that the individual always has ideas and opportunities to resolve whatever is holding them back but understands that they may need help to define their goals, set their path, and achieve their success. Coaching is about listening, reflecting, asking questions and unlocking YOUR potential.
Mentoring is to support and encourage people to manage their own learning in order that they may maximise their potential, develop their skills, improve their performance and become the person they want to be.’ Mentoring is development driven, looking not just at the professional’s current job function but beyond, taking a more holistic approach to career development. Mentoring is non-evaluative, while coaching is based on measuring performance change. Due to the personal nature of mentoring, a mentor will more often than not draw on their personal experiences and expertise to help their mentee. This could be in the form of sharing a story that taught them a valuable lesson, or a challenge they overcame in their career.
Tim HJ Rogers
Ex-Athlete, now Change Practitioner, ICF Coach, IoD Mentor, Mediation Practitioner
Helping people and organisations achieve their goals.
ICF Trained Coach IoD Business Mentor, Mediator, Management Consultant, Change Practitioner Mob 447797762051 Tim@ThinkingFeelingBeing.com Tim@AdaptConsultingCompany.com
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