I teach that you should seek to learn from competitors; obviously never copy another business's idea or what they are doing, but you can absolutely learn from their mistakes or see what they are doing and discover ways to improve it. All of that analysis belongs in your business plan: make sure you have your competitors under the microscope and make sure that is a solid chunk of your plan. That is some of the best research and information you will gather about what will make your business successful in future.
What should be included in the business plan? Without being too prescriptive, there are certain necessary elements which need to be included. Such elements are: · Preliminaries _ such as contents, contacts and definitions; · An executive summary; · A description of the business; · A review of the market, the competition and market positioning; · The vision, mission and objectives; · The corporate strategy; · The plan for developing the products and services; · Financial projections; · An outline of the risks and opportunities; · A conclusion. Understand gaps and weaknesses within the plan.