What is a business plan?
Simply defined, a business plan is a document that describes a business and it's environment and forecasts it's future. While true, we believe that this simple definition "misses the point". For more read "Why write a business plan?".
A business plan can be as short as one or two pages, but is usually longer to include sections such the following:
The business plan should have a compelling Executive Summary that tells the reader that this is a project worth pursuing. The balance of the report should be factual, well reasoned and well written so that the reader gains confidence in the author(s) and their project. Here is "How to write a business plan".
- Executive Summary - A summary of the plan designed to gain the interest of the reader.
- Company - Describes the entity that conducts business.
- Business - Explains the operation that produces the products and / or services.
- Market - Details the competitive environment and how the business will compete for customers.
- Personnel - Tells about the key people needed to run the company.
- Financials - Provides forecasted (also called pro forma) operating statements, cash flow forecasts and balance sheets for the company. Includes past operating results for established businesses.
- Source and Use - Shows where the money for the above is coming from (the source) and on what it will be spent (the use).
- Assumptions - Gives the basis for the author's conclusions.
For step by step help with your business plan, please use our business plan software.
Below are links to our business articles, we hope that you find them helpful.
Basic Bookkeeping Made Easy.
The Basic Business Plan.
Be a Successful Salesperson in Five Steps.
How to Get a Business Loan in Five Steps.
How to Overcome Sales Objections in Five Steps.
How to Start Your Own Business.
How to Write a Business Plan in Five Steps.
How to Have Lenders and Investors Eating Out of Your Hand.
Secrets of a Great Business Plan.
What is a Business Plan?
Why Write a Business Plan?
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