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50 questions: “Creating a business plan is not about bullshitting a document”

By on August 15, 2011

Together with Nic Brisbourne of The Equity Kicker / DFJ Esprit, I am writing a series of 50 questions you should ask when raising venture capital. We expect the series to run for a year, after which we will collate the answers into a book. We view this as a collaboration, so please comment to help make this series even more useful. This is #30 in the series.

This week’s question is really entitled “What are the most common mistakes in a business plan?”, but Nic provided a succinct way of thinking about his answers, and I decided to quote that in the headline above.

A business plan (and the associated executive summary / powerpoint / documentation) are very important documents. They are not like exam papers or coursework that you just have to get “approved” by someone in a position of power: they are the working documents that you use to work through the challenges to your business model, and to share your understanding with an investor who is looking for a long term partnership.

Nic’s full quote is:

“Creating a business plan is not about bullshitting a document. It’s about thinking through the issues in the business and how you’re going to solve them”.

Go and read 50 Questions: What are the most common mistakes in a business plan? to find out how to avoid these basic errors. Hungry for more? Go to the 50 questions homepage for more insights into venture capital.

I’ll be speaking on “Raising money for games: pitching your company, not your product” at Games Invest on 22nd September. Tickets are available for £99 from

About Nicholas Lovell

Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve: