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Preview of Lean Business Planning: Get What You Want from Your Business

15 minutes of course content

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Course Description

This is a free preview (15 minutes) of the Lean Business Planning: Get What You Want from Your Business course. The description of the full course (150 minutes) is provided below.

Lean business planning is a simple but powerful way to get what you want from your business. Get focused, grow faster, and adjust to change. A lean business plan is an easy and practical way to align strategy, tactics, milestones, assumptions, and essential cash flow without the fuss of a full business plan.

After taking this course you'll be able to: 

  • utilize a simple, powerful, and easy approach to getting what you want from your business. Any business, existing, startup, or in the planning stage, can take advantage of this approach.
  • use methods to stay focused, grow faster, and adjust quickly to change. Set expectations and track results.
  • use methods to review and revise regularly to simplify and watch the important milestones.
  • know when to stick to the plan, when to change it, and how to tell the difference.
  • learn how to easily forecast sales, expenses, and cash flow, and how to manage ongoing results.
  • set priorities for long term and manage steps in the short term.

This course is for professionals within the following business functions: 

  • Business owners and entrepreneurs: people who want to start a new business or manage an existing business better

What the Experts are Saying:

"Think you don’t need a business plan? Think again! Tim Berry brings business planning into the 21st century, marrying the real need for a plan with today’s “lean” thinking. The result? Truly the last book on business plans you’ll ever need."

– Rieva Lesonsky, President/CEO of growbiz media, author of best-selling ever Start Your Own Business


"Forget the old-fashioned business plan. It's not just for startups, or investors; it's to run your business better. Faster, easier, more focused, and quicker to change. Tim Berry's Lean Business Planning is a methodology, not just a plan. It's about getting the right things done. A must for every business owner and startup."

– Susan Solovic, THE small business expert, NYT best-selling author


John Jantsch"In order to thrive today your business must be nimble. Throw out traditional business planning and embrace Lean Business Planning and set your business free to dominate."

– John Jantsch, author of best-sellers Duct Tape Marketing and The Referral Engine

  1. Orientation - 25 minutes

    1. Business for Life, Not Life for Business
    2. Course Contents
    3. What's Lean? Lean Manufacturing, Lean Startups ... and Lean Planning
    4. Principles of Lean Planning
    5. Links for more information
  2. The First Three Steps - 40 minutes

    1. Step One: Set the Strategy
    2. Real case: when tactics didn't match strategy
    3. Step Two: Tactics Make Strategy Real
    4. Tactics: A Real Case Example
    5. Tactics: Summary and Conclusion
    6. Step Three: Concrete Specifics: Milestones, Metrics, Assumptions
  3. Step Four: Essential Business Numbers - 45 minutes

    1. About this Section
    2. How to Set Sales and Spending Categories
    3. How to Develop Your Numbers and Estimates
    4. Sales Forecast Structure
    5. Sales Forecast Sample Case 1: Bicycle Store
    6. Sales Forecast Case 2: The Deli-Café
    7. Sales Forecast Case 3: Email Marketing
    8. Sales Forecast Case 4: Online Sales
    9. Budget Your Spending
    10. Plan for Cash
  4. Step Always: Review and Revise - 10 minutes

    1. Monthly Review
    2. Compare Results to What You Planned
    3. Change the Plan or Stick to the Plan
  5. Special: Business Plan Financials Simplified - 35 minutes

    1. About these three short videos
    2. Part 1: Planning vs. Accounting, and Six Key Terms
    3. Part 2: Three Common Confusions You Can Avoid
    4. Part 3. What You Need to Know About Cash Flow
    5. Links and recommendations for more information
  6. Additional Information - 15 minutes

    1. Estimating Starting Costs
    2. Sharing Your Plan When You Need To
    3. Know Your Market

About the Expert

Timothy Berry

Timothy Berry

Tim Berry is the best-known and most-respected expert on business planning in the world. Do a Google search for “business plan expert” and you’ll find Tim Berry listed first in the organic, unpaid results. Business writers have called him “the business plan guru” and “the Obi-wan Kenobi of business planning,” in print, in major media. He’s the author of Lean Business Planning, published by Motivational Press, and half a dozen other books published by Entrepreneur, McGraw- Hill, Dow Jones-Irwin, and others. Entrepreneur-celebrity Guy Kawasaki chose to interview Berry as his expert on business planning, and he’s been writing on that topic for more than a decade at Entrepreneur,, and other major media. He did business planning for various divisions of Apple Computer for 12 years, and for a collection of clients, large and small for decades. He's not just an expert; he's an entrepreneur. Berry founded Palo Alto Software and built it on his own, without outside investment, to multi-million-dollar sales, profits, and cash flow independence. He also founded, and he was a co-founder of Borland International, a software company that went public in less than four years. He is now a leader of a local angel investment group. He has a Stanford MBA degree, an MA in Journalism with honors from the University of Oregon, and a BA magna cum laude from the University of Notre Dame. There’s more information about him at
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