Three Questions to Ask a Business Plan Consultant
What Do Funders Want?
One of the most important topics that business plan consultants can offer their expertise on is what investors and lenders (and specific classes of each group) want to see in a business plan. If you have written a draft, they can relate this knowledge to what you have created with specific guidance on how to develop the plan further. Also, asking questions about what your type of intended funder want to see in a business plan will give you a good idea of whether the consultant has experience in this area or not. This can help you evaluate potential consultants if you are shopping for one to contract for additional work.
Is My Research Complete?
Research into the market, customers, competitors, and costs you will encounter can never cover every potentially useful piece of data, as this would be cost-prohibitive for entrepreneurs. However, ask whether your research is complete enough to support your argument and calm any worries about the business's feasibility. As research is one of the most time-intensive areas of business plan development, and generally an area consultants can help with, this is a good question to find out if you are on target.
Does My Strategy Make Sense?
While it is difficult for an outsider without the same knowledge of your resources, industry, and specific situation to know if your strategy is the right one, they should be able to say whether it makes sense in the context of the business plan. If the strategy does not seem logical based on your resources and research given in the plan, ask for actionable steps you can take to adjust the strategy or additional questions you can ask yourself to this end.