The situation: You have decided to explore the idea of opening your own pet food and supplies retail store. You have 10 years of retail management experience, a college diploma in business and a strong love for animals. You currently live in the Toronto area – but are willing to move. You are leaning towards serving the higher end of the market – but are not sure. You want to provide a good range of products, maybe focused more heavily on higher quality goods that cater to other pet lovers like you. At the same time, however, you know the value of a dollar and that everything seems very expensive. So you are a bit unclear on the specific direction you should take. You know that a great deal of research and analysis is needed to better understand the opportunity, formalize your mission/goals and shape your business. Your research will also help inform how your business may grow. You also know that at the end of the day, you may need to make very important assumptions – some of these at a very high level. Indeed, you know from your time as a student that the perfect set of relevant research may be unavailable or incomplete.
This outline should include the following:
1. The structure of your plan – what are the key sections?