Some 22 years ago I learned about business plans. Before that I had heard little of them. I was surprised at how many businesses owners did not write a business plan at all... The owner / entrepreneur had some ideas in his/her head and just went forward. If you've ever worked for these people, you've probably also experienced a lot of screaming and frustration. That's not the way I wanted to build a business.
I discovered that writing a business plan actually enabled others in the business, not only to understand the big picture, but to be pro-active, make better decisions and work together to forward the action in favor of the big idea. But I hated planning, I was more of hip-shooting kind of guy... but a friend of mine had a deal going with Apple Computer and they wanted to see his business plan. It had to cover all the bases - the engineers wanted to review the product section, the management people wanted to know about the managers, the finance people needed to be sure that his company was sustainable, and so on. Being a former catalog copy-writer for the Sharper Image Catalog, I figured I could help him out. From my perspective at the time, a business plan was a bit like a giant brochure. It must sell at all levels. Long story short, he got the deal. But it wasn't over for me...
I kept meeting people who wanted me to help them with their business plans. I helped write some good business plans! Then it struck me (standing in the shower, of course), what if I took all of my materials I used to write a business plan and put them together into Word and Excel templates and offered them on a disk? I ran some classified ads... the phone rang, people loved them... I was in business.
Jian (jee'-on): a zen word that means the master of every art (vs. jack of all trades and master of none!) is a contemporary American software company applying modern techniques to the art of building businesses. For more than 20 years, we've focused exclusively on developing business software to help entrepreneurs and business owners to
complete important business projects in a fraction of the time it would otherwise take to do them from scratch.
JIAN introduced the revolutionary BizPlanBuilder® in 1988. Rated their "Best Buy" by PC World and winner of Success Magazine's "Editor's Choice Gold Medal Award," BizPlanBuilder has been one of the most popular business planning software tools in the World. With almost 2,000,000 copies sold worldwide, more than a BILLION dollars have been raised through angel investors, venture capitalists, the SBA and bank financing.
So, what is my philosophy behind Jian?
I thought I wanted to either get rich on something silly like a "Pet Rock" or change the world with something serious like Penicillin, but I've
always wondered what happened to the inventions featured in Popular Science and Popular Mechanics. Perhaps the inventors and others could benefit from my business plan template. Perhaps supporting others to introduce their solutions for our world was better leveraging of my skills and a more important contribution for me to make to the world right now. Years later, I wrote the book, "Business Black Belt" to share my business-building observations - stuff none of the consultants, MBAs and other gurus I've worked with along the way never mentioned. With the line of business tools we are constantly developing and refining, you could say that our philosophy is this:
Start a Business, Stay in Business, Make a Difference!