From USA Today:
The concept of developing a business plan has come under fire in recent years. People have challenged the necessity of creating one, even for the most complex businesses.
I’ve heard successful entrepreneurs boast that they’ve raised millions for a venture without a business plan. What they fail to mention is that they’ve previously started or run other, highly successful companies, and those millions came from venture capitalists who’d made a fortune backing their previous enterprises. So sure, if you’re one of the founders of Google or eBay, and you’ve got another good idea, you may be able to raise millions just sketching your idea out on a napkin.
But for the 99.9% of the rest of us, we’re going to need a business plan — even if our funding sources say all they want is a few slides and some financial projections. Why? Because you can certainly expect that when you finally get that all-important pitch meeting with them, they’re going to grill you on every aspect of your business. If you haven’t developed a thorough business plan, you won’t have good, polished answers to give them.