Most people, only write dissertations for the purpose of moving up the academic ladder—either as a requirement to obtain a Bachelors’, Masters’ or Doctorate (Ph.D.) degree. This is quite unfortunate and wasteful because there are many successful businesses today that started as a college thesis.
Case study 1: FILED
This is a company that started in 2007 by six project students of Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City, Philippines. The group started selling office merchandize that helped people (especially students) organize their life in a very innovative way. It has grown in leaps and bound since then, expanding into Singapore, and other countries. All from a college thesis! Note, the students all got A grades for the project.
Case study 2: THE PLATFORM COLLECTIVE
This is another startup that started from a college dissertation. Four final year students of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) decided to go out of the norm to achieve what many would believe was an impossible dream, and along the way, create real life impact and benefit to others. They created a community where businesses can approach other businesses and barter their products and services instead of cash. And it worked.
Results of Dissertations can Become a Product/Service
Like FILED and THE PLATFORM COLLECTIVE, your next dissertation can also be turned into a marketable business plan. When writing dissertations, one of your major objectives should be to bring a solution (either a service or product) to the market rather than just disseminating a new discovered body of knowledge, or completing a requirement for obtaining a degree.
Ph.D. thesis especially requires you to delve deeper into your field of study than you ever have before, to actually bring something new to the field. A good Ph.D. dissertation help like proofreading tools, professional editors, etc. is encouraged to ensure that what you eventually come up with is a solution that is novel and revolutionary.
The primary purpose (or mission) of your business is to improve the quality of lives of others via your service. Once you’ve figured out how your research (or dissertation) can add value or bring a solution to the market, then you need to build a business plan around it.
Turning Your Dissertation into a Business Plan
A standard business plan has basically 6 main elements. These will help you put the proper structure around your solution in order to take it successfully to the market.
#1. Your Pitch or Executive Summary
An executive summary is a one- or two-page summary of your entire business plan. First, you write out the company’s profile and goals. You will then move on to write out information about a need or gap in your target market, and how your particular solutions can fill it. Convince the reader that you can succeed in your target market, then address your future plans (to spur a desire in him to invest his money or time) in it. Remember, your Executive Summary will be the last thing you write when developing your plan, but it will come in the first page of your business plan.
#2. Business Description
To completely describe the business, you have to describe four key areas:
The company – First, begin with the description of the industry (including facts and figures). Second, describe the structure of your business whether it’s a sole-proprietorship or partnership, and also whether it’s wholesale, retail, manufacturing, or service-oriented. You should also mention who you will sell to, how the product will be distributed, and the business’s support systems. Support may come in the form of advertising, promotions, and customer service.
The product or service – Here, emphasize any unique features or variations (aka USP—Unique Selling Proposition) from concepts that can typically be found in the industry. Is it a breakthrough or revolutionary or patented or trade secret product or service? Don’t hesitate to show the investor how mind-stretching the product is and why the business will be profitable!
Sales Capacity – How big is your industry? It is worth millions or billions of dollars per year? What percentage of that industry is your business going to capture? What are the signs that percentage will be covered? Show it!
Reward – Explain clearly how everyone involved in the business is rewarded and equity-split options for shareholders (or investors).
#3. Products (or Services) Development
No matter how amazing the product (or service) is, you must have a clearly written plan for its development. In fact, I can tell you from experience that for every improvement in the quality of your product or service, you have an excuse to increase price which the market will warmly welcome.
#4. Sales and Marketing
Write out all the different channels where the products will be sold and the structure of how it will be distributed nationwide or worldwide.
#5. Operations and Management Team
Design and write out systems that can run daily, weekly, or monthly (even when you’re not around). For example, set the time the business opens, goes on break and time it closes; daily record and updates (databases, new contacts, events to be filed, etc.); minimum number of daily advert placements; etc. Resume to your office at the set time even if you’re still the only member of the business, follow up on the routines, and close at the set time (if you need to).
#6. Financial Projections
This is where the investor’s interest is sealed. Start with a sales forecast. Set up a spreadsheet projecting your sales over the course of three years. Develop a cash-flow statement showing your income projections, budgeted and unbudgeted expenses, assets and liabilities. And another cash flow statement that shows your breakeven analysis, etc. You might need to employ the services of a financial intelligence expert for this.
The kind of resources that go into a quality dissertation is the kind that can produce quality solutions that are marketable. If you can ensure the six elements above around your research results, your next dissertation can bring the next revolutionary product (or service) into the market just like FILE and THE PLATFORM COLLECTIVE.