Often business owners get distracted by the complexity of their own business and end up wasting time and energy working on the wrong stuff. The business model canvas is a technique that documents your business model with a simple diagram. I have found it invaluable in helping businesses gain greater clarity about what activities add value to their business.
Having now used the canvas for some time, I have generated my own version of it, that better suits the type of businesses I have been working with. Often just filling out this template or canvas, creates many powerful discussions that benefits the business.
Below is my adapted version of the canvas: (you can click here for a pdf)
In the formative stages of growth of a company, it is particularly important not to loss sight of both the quantifiable value proposition and what your sustainable competitive advantage is.
In my incarnation of the canvas I have included two new boxes:
- Problem – What is the problem your product or service solves?
- Unique Proposition – What do you have that makes you unique and keeps competitors at bay? Particularly ones with deep pockets.
If you are new to the “business model canvas” , here is a link to a book review and summary that I published a while ago on the original book. It’s great to see this book appearing on book shelves all around the country.My hope is that business owners are using it to accelerate decisions in their business on a daily basis and note just letting it gather dust.
PS: Like all tools it works better when you under stand how to use it. If you want a hand getting used to using this model on your business– come along to one of the GMC business planning workshops.
PPS: I have just updated my version of the canvas read my V2 GMC Canvas post Oct 2012
The BMC is quite a nice, simple tool especially for embryonic startups seeking to validate their business idea. It provides a quick visual dashboard that iterates between the testing of each hypothesis. While not completely abolishing the need for a full bplan it certainly provides a tool for getting to ‘the perfect one’ or killing the idea faster.
Im keeping an eye on Steve Blank’s use of the BMC in his Stanford Uni class with the hope of bringing it into the Spark education programme and hopefully even some of the university’s business teachings.
im very much looking forward to the iPad app of the canvas
This is nice. I’d done an adaptation too, but I like yours better 🙂
One thing I added to mine was a strip above the cost & revenue streams boxes for a key success metric. This is a crucial activity or result that maps to customer retention or revenue. I think I got the idea from Ash Muraya and incorporated it because it helps to remind me that the point of an early-stage model is to test & learn – to prove something.
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Check out this video describing the business model canvas
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