#42 Raise Expectations

Unicorn Business Plan's Definition of Commit

Don’t be afraid to commit to your business plan. ‘We will’ is a better approach than ‘contingent on.’ Raise expectations with conservative optimism.

We see so many business plans peppered with phrases like:

  • “Following a successful Series A funding round…”

  • “Ideally...”

  • “The Company intends to…”

Just say it’s going to happen. Visualize a world where the capital is raised and your plan is in action. It makes for a better read, and it immerses your investor in the world you intend to create.

It’s also a great reality check for you. Now that it’s going to happen, is it still something you want to be involved in?

In the midst of building your business plan it’s easy to forget that raising capital is just the beginning of the story of your business.

Raising your expectations helps you confirm how keen you are to actually do what you say you're going to do. Try out our revolutionary free business plan visualization exercise:

“Congratulations, you’re funded.”

Did you expect that to happen? Are you still confident that you've got everything you need to get those million paid subscribers in your first year?


Great! You have a solid business plan.

Raised expectations = realistic expectations = better business plan.  

Case Study.

A Unicorn client is developing a revolutionary treatment for a serious chronic disease. Preclinical trials have yielded incredibly promising results.

Drugs take a long time to come to market. A lot of things can go wrong along the way. So basically, it’s the same as any other business. The pharmaceutical industry is particularly prone to caution - and rightly so. You can’t bluster your way to empirical results.  

The original document’s cautious pessimism was full of ‘ifs’ and ‘contingent upons’. It took a reader through Phase I and Phase II Clinical Trials to FDA approval to selling packets of pills. Ten to twenty years.

Once we applied some cautious optimism, it made for a better business plan in a surprisingly satisfying way.

  • It narrowed the scope.

Now, the company is offering investors the chance to back them through to the end of the Phase II Clinical Trials. 5-10 years.  

Realistically, if the clinical trials are successful, the company will get bought up.  The investors will be paid a fortune, and a bigger company will bring the drug to market.

It’s a great business plan and we wish them all the best.

If your business is ready to raise, get in touch. Unicorn helps you create the business plan, pitch deck, and executive summary you need for investors to understand who you are and why your business is worth their time and money.