Just the Right Business Plan for the Creative Entrepreneur

Do you dream of taking your own unique talents, pursuing that thing you’re passionate about and starting a business?

Do you long for the opportunity to make your own unique contribution while at the same time generating a decent income?

Or maybe you’ve already got your business up and running, but you’ve become stuck and stagnant. Maybe you’ve never had a clear sense of the direction your business should be taking.

Have you taken time to write up a business plan yet?

Or was the question itself enough to have you shrinking in terror, feeling the tight grip of fear around your heart?

Are you sweating already?!

If you’re a “Right-Brain” creative type, you’d much rather be surrounded by paints and canvas than faced with having to ‘create’ an Excel spreadsheet.

And unless someone’s breathing down your neck to get a business plan written, there’s a good chance it’s not going to happen.

Getting your own business up and running can bring out the very best of your creativity. The passion and excitement that you bring to making your business dreams a reality can mean that, despite the long hours and steep learning curves, working on your business is fun and energising.

But start throwing phrases like “business plan” and “monthly reporting” into the mix, and feel the energy drain away!

What you dreamed would be an amazing and exciting new business could well be stopped in it’s tracks the moment those words are uttered. Even the best-intentioned entrepreneur may be gripped by terror and paralysis at the thought of having to face these decidedly “left-brain” activities.

Starting a business without a business plan is like starting out on a road-trip without a map.

Sure you can do it. If you don’t particularly care where you end up.

But if you have a destination in mind, if you have financial and other goals for your business, you really need that map!

There are many entrepreneurs who are quick tell you that you don’t need a business plan, that it’s really better to just get in there and do it, and figure out the details along the way.

Which may be great advice in the short term. It might just help you move past the inaction that results from trying to get every detail just right before you begin.

Personally, I wouldn’t recommend it!

I did it myself. Jumped in. Started both my online bookshop and my blog. With many pages of ‘notes’ and ideas. But without a “Plan”.

It didn’t take long at all for me to start feeling ‘stuck’. Because I’d never taken the time to put it all together, I really haven’t had a clear picture of how the pieces of my business fit together.

I hadn’t asked myself the questions that I would’ve if I’d taken time to research and write a business plan.

And without that clear picture of my business purpose and goals, I started to find it more and more difficult to move forward. (It’s a whole lot harder to write a blog post when you’re not exactly sure how and if it fits into your overall business goals!)

But what if creating a business plan was as much fun – or maybe even more – than the rest of the work you do on your business?

A couple of weeks back, I was fortunate enough to discover Jennifer Lee, of Artizen Coaching, and the Right-Brain Business Plan.

There’s loads of interesting stuff on Jennifer’s website, including her Right-Brainers in Business Video Summit and Right-Brain Business Plan e-course.

But what mostly got my attention was Jennifer’s book. And so – having a thing for books as I do – I quickly ordered a copy for myself with my next supplier order.

And I figured that if I loved it, I could also share it with you!

The Right-Brain Business Plan: A Creative, Visual Map for Success.

I love it when a box of books turns up at the door, and yesterday, when my copy of Jennifer’s book arrived, was no exception!

The Right-Brain Business Plan is, honestly, all that I expected, and more.

The beautiful cover and perfectly-suited recycled paper will appeal to creative right-brainers before you even begin to delve into the wealth of ideas and inspiration in this book.

The gorgeous photos throughout the book show how other right-brain entrepreneurs have used the Right-Brain Business Plan to create their own comprehensive business plans. (And these are definitely not business plans that will end up in a folder or archive box, never to be referred to again.)

Mixed media card decks, wall posters, collaged accordion folders, even hanging mobile business plans. There’s no shortage of ideas for creating a business plan that’s perfectly suited to you and your unique business.

This is not a book about art techniques though.

The Right-Brain Business Plan is filled with fun and creative exercises that will help you determine

  • Your vision and values
  • Who your perfect customers are (and how to reach them)
  • How much money you’ll need (and how you’re going to get it)
  • Your ‘Creative Cohorts’ – people who’ll support you in your business
  • How to make your vision real

You’ll be inspired to have a go at creating a “Detective Bulletin Board” to help you uncover the markets, trends and competition that make up your business landscape. This will help you to know how best to position your own business.

Or you might be inspired, as I am, by the “Sticky Note Project Plan”. This looks like exactly what I need to keep track of the goals I’ve set and the tasks I’m wanting to complete. (As I write, I have two big pieces of poster board, colored sticky notes and a permanent marker waiting for me to begin my creation. Hopefully it won’t be long before I find time for it – I’ll make sure to post a photo when it’s done!)

If you’re at your very best when you’re creating but the thought of creating that business plan has you breaking out in cold sweats, The Right-Brain Business Plan is probably the perfect solution for you.

You’ll find Jennifer’s book here at Amazon or at Jennifer Lee’s website.

I’d love to hear about your experience of creating a business plan. How has having or not having a plan has affected your business? Share your thoughts by clicking on “Leave a comment” at the top of this post!



6 thoughts on “Just the Right Business Plan for the Creative Entrepreneur

  1. Brigid, this book sounds sensational. I will be ordering my copy from your website!

    I have done the traditional business plans before as a management consultant, and at times tried some more creative approaches throughout my career. It can depend on the group dynamics on how well the creative stuff goes down!!

    I did a simple one page business plan for our current business which I kept updated for the first few years, seeking input from staff at our monthly staff meetings. However, that has fallen by the wayside now, so I am so looking forward to some fresh ideas to get it back on the agenda but in a new format!!

    1. Kerrie, I think you’ll love it! Am hoping the copies I’ve ordered will be here in the next few days – I’ll let you know when they arrive. And I’ll try to get the book up on the website before the weekend, so you can put the order in.
      You sound like you’ve had heaps of experience with doing business plans! Jennifer’s book is great because it covers all those same questions that you ask for a traditional business plan, but in a creative and fun way. Hopefully it will give you some exciting new ideas for your businesses, as well as a unique way of expressing those. Will look forward to hearing how it goes!

  2. Hi Brigid,
    I prefer to operate from the right-brain but we live in a left-brain dominated world. I too have gotten stuck with my blog and I think that it is time to write another business plan starting with where I am now.

    I will look into Jennifer Lee’s website to get some more insights and ideas.

    1. Hi Justin, thanks for visiting The Inspired Notebook! I hope that you do find Jennifer’s website helpful with ideas for your new business plan.
      I can imagine that many bloggers and business owners these days need to revisit their business plans much more often as technology constantly changes our approach to business. I love the idea that a ‘Right-Brain’ creative business plan may be more dynamic than the traditional (left-brain) umpteen page business plan!
      Best of luck with your own work on your business plan and blog direction. Hope you enjoy the process!

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