ExecVisa Presents the Compelling Advantages of the Business Model Canvas Over the Immigration Business Plan
While many attorneys may be familiar with formulating a Business Plan very few of them have heard of the Business Model Canvas, the brainchild of Dr Alex Osterwalder. The Business Model Canvas was co-created by Dr Osterwalder, world renowned entrepreneur and co-author of the international bestseller Business Model Generation which sold over 1 million copies in 30 different languages. The Business Model Canvas is used now by leading organizations around the world like GE, P&G, intel, 3M and NASA.
The Business Model Canvas was co-created by Dr Osterwalder, world-renowned entrepreneur and co-author of the international bestseller Business Model Generation which sold over 1 million copies in 30 different languages. The Business Model Canvas is used now by leading organizations around the world, like GE, P&G, Ericsson, NASA, PWC, intel and 3M.
Dr Alex Osterwalder is a frequent keynote speaker and guest lecturer in top universities around the world. These include Stanford, Berkeley, MIT, IESE and IMD. During his lectures, he argues that the current structure of business plans are inadequate and no business plan survives the first contact with customers. He postulates that the real focus should not be a planning document containing conjectured figures and financial projections. The focus should be on a Business Model Canvas format which is going to change throughout the entrepreneurial journey. This includes a start-up, or an intrapreneurial journey (such as corporate managers starting new initiatives that build growth in a big company by setting up a new distinct business unit).
This logic and guide is reflected in the approach used by ExecVisa.com, a company dedicated to assisting immigrants to secure a wide variety of visas. The assistance they provide to many immigrants in the U.S. highlight the importance of the Business Model Canvas for the launch and survival of start-ups. Even after a business is up and running, these immigrant entrepreneurs and executives continue to manipulate their Business Model Canvas to adapt to external pressures.
Nine basic building blocks
Dr Osterwalder redefined a business model as a description of the rationale of how an organization creates, delivers, and captures value. Osterwalder states that a business model can best be described through nine basic building blocks that show the logic of how a company intends to secure revenues. The nine blocks cover the four main areas of a business: customers, offer, infrastructure, and financial viability. The business model becomes a blueprint for a strategy to be implemented through organizational structures, processes, and systems. This concept becomes a shared language that allows to easily describe and manipulate the business model to create new strategic alternatives. Without such a shared language it is difficult to systematically challenge assumptions about one’s business model and innovate successfully (Osterwalder, 2009).
Immigration Business Plans
The U.S. Citizenship and immigration service (USCIS) evaluates many thousands of immigration business plans each year for start-up visas such as E-2, L-1 and EB-5. In many cases, these start-up visa applications are rejected. This is due to USCIS’ concerns over flaws or weaknesses in the said immigration business plan. Surprisingly, many start-ups, which do manage to be approved by USCIS, still manage fail within the first 2 years of operation. Failure to generate sufficient income and/or create enough U.S. jobs, subsequently results in rejection of visa renewals or the rejection of a Green Card application. Utilising the Business Model Canvas approach, ExecVisa.com has been providing the means for immigrant entrepreneurs to obviate these shortcomings and adapt to external pressures.
Recognising Business Model External Pressures
Business models are continuously subject to external pressures that oblige a company to constantly adapt their business model to a changing environment. The following figurative example illustrates how the iTunes business model has changed considerably since 2001 due to external pressures. The original iPod/iTunes now tailors to smart phone (iPhone as of 2007) and tablet (iPad as of 2010) technology. Moreover, iTunes has extended its offerings from originally music to include other downloads such as Apps, videos and ebooks.
Here follows a selection of those external pressures that impact directly or indirectly the business model:
Technological change - Technology comes in many forms (e.g., ICT) and its application in business is rapidly changing. Since technology is increasingly applied to every aspect of business, technological change pressures managers to reflect on how technology can be adopted to improve the business logic of the firm (Osterwalder, 2004).
Competitive forces - A second-major pressure on a company's business model comes from its competitors.
Customer demand - Pressure to adapt a company's business model may also come from the customer demand side.
Social environment - Sometimes the social environment and social mood can influence the business model of a firm.
Legal environment - Often changes in the legal environment also make it necessary to adapt business models.
The insights and expertise propagated by Dr Osterwalder are worthy of further examination and implementation by any immigration attorney unfamiliar with his work.
About The Author
ExecVisa.com is a team of experienced professionals and partners that advise and guide those seeking visas. ExecVisa book is available at http://amazon.com/author/execvisa
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