Business Plan – Charter

Back when I was 21 years old I figured you had to start somewhere.  Our business plan started with a “charter statement” which – in hindsight – was roughly equivalent to a vision statement.

1 CHARTER

Feld Technologies intends to become the industry leader in semi-custom software. It will do this by understanding and addressing all of the components of database application software for small businesses, thus defining the industry.

Feld Technologies is also a vehicle through which to tap the productive abilities of its founders, with the intent of creating a “world” for its employees.

The Company is established for their benefit. The Company will act as a mechanism to leverage the founders intellectual and implementational talents in an attempt to make them authorities in the software industry.

In 1987 the software industry was still pretty young (guess how big Microsoft was – if you don’t know, you’ll find out in the next post in the series.  Hint – Lotus was about the same size.)  So – it was probably conceivable to us that we could “define the semi-custom software” industry (since it didn’t exist).  I remember spending a lot of time trying to figure out a unique label for what we were going to do (we hadn’t thought of Web 2.0 in 1987) and ultimately settled on “semi-custom software.”

We were young and idealistic so we were determined to “create a world for our employees.”  While our world ended up being modest (we sold the business when we were 20 people), we did create something that was unique and impactful to the lives of most of our employees (including us).  A little idealism never hurts.  It’s not quite as pithy and elegant as “don’t be evil” but you get the point.

  • Dave Jilk

    My recollection of our vision of “Semi custom software” is approximately what are now called “packaged apps” such as CRM, ERP, etc. We were too early (I always am), obviously.

  • http://cba.loyno.edu/faculty/gahoward George Howard

    This is just FANTASTIC! i used to run a large record company, and saw too many poorly written business plans. Having since entered academia, I’ve made it part of my mission to instruct my students on the art of the good business plan; this will be wildly helpful! I hope you don’t mind if i directed my students to your blog.

    thank you,

    George

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