Should You Use Document Sharing to Create Your Business Plan
Through the Cloud and various document sharing programs, you can now share everything with all of your employees and anyone else you want to bring in to assist with your work. In fact, several articles published in Business Tech, Entrepreneur.com, Small Business Issues, and others like them, recommend that you use document sharing programs to update and develop your business plan.
The business plan outlines the heart and skeletal structure of your business. It is a very important document that will often help you to obtain the financing that you need. On the one hand, involving your employees in this process could be beneficial, but at the same time it could also be quite risky depending on your employees and their abilities. Before you make a decision there are two particular factors that you need to consider.
While there are excellent document sharing programs that provide top of the line security, most business owners are not using these programs. If you’re like most small business owners, most of your capital is invested in other areas of your business. Depending on what all you are including in your business plan, this may not be something that you want to put up into a general file sharing program. Even though Google Docs and other similar programs have security features, they can still be hacked into.
This may not be a big deal when it comes to things that are generally known such as your general company registration, but if you have any confidential information in your business plan, as most business owners do, the loss of your business plan through hacking or theft could be devastating. So while this does not discount the possibility that it may be good to share the business plan with your employees, you may not want to use a document sharing program that does not have adequate security features.
One of the benefits of using a document sharing program is that you don’t have to deal with all of your employees all at once giving you their ideas. However, you still need to consider the personality component. What kind of personalities and intelligence levels do your employees have? Are they the types of individuals who would be able to give valuable insight into your business? More importantly, do you trust them with the confidential information that is likely to be found in your business plan?
The employee personality evaluation can be difficult. However, for this to work, you need to be able to trust these individuals. They may be great employees, but they may not be great advisors when it comes to your business. The other difficulty is that if they have access to your business plan through a general document sharing option, they may become offended if you do not take their recommendations. This in turn leads to drama. A way around this is to simply ask them for their input without allowing them to alter the document. Explain very clearly that you just want to get some ideas and that there is no guarantee you will use them.