We have established that it is highly important for companies to have a business plan. In the multitude of firms and companies, there is a way to stand out: a successful business plan.
So, what is the recipe for writing a business plan that impress? The art lies not only in the content but in the way it is presented so as to result in a professional, convincing material.
The first requirement is a general one, that should be used in the case of any written (or spoken) statement: in order to transmit information in a coherent, appealing manner, the business plan writer should observe the main principles of discourse. These are: clarity, brevity/conciseness, logic and truthfulness. In order to gain consistency and credibility, the presented information should be backed up with figures whenever possible.
The second main requirement when writing business plans is that you always have to keep in mind the target readers of your work and thus putting emphasis on their particular points of interest. But this stage is a customizable one, that will be grafted on a basic common structure.
Most significant aspects that should be dealt with when writing a business plan:
- A presentation of your business and products;
- A market prospect in the specific area;
- A marketing analysis of the product’s/service’s competitiveness;
- Information on the firm’s management team;
- A financial survey of your business.
Usually, business plans have the following components:
- Executive summary
- Company description
- Product or service
- Market analysis, marketing, sales
- Strategy and implementation
- Management team
- Financial analysis
What to think of for writing a business plan of success: Manner of Presentation plus Plan Purpose.
Beyond content, a business plan needs more to convince: a presentation to arise interest.
A successful presentation can be achieved by taking care of format and accent on the important aspects.
Try to write the business plan in the simplest and clearest possible way, usingsimple language, short paragraphs, not too many ideas in one sentence.
Limit the text to strictly meaningful essence.
Link paragraphs and ideas logically to one another.
Maintain your previsions realistic within reasonable limits.
Put an emphasis especially on figuresbehind words, as they prove a pragmatic mind, inclined towards putting theory into practice.
Granting a Purpose to Your Plan
Obtaining the expected result from presenting a business plan depends very much on the skillfulness and knowledge you can put in highlighting the exact matters that interest your reader. This means understanding and visualizing your business in its most intimate details, so as to be able to present it from different perspectives. Then, there is some psychological research you have to perform, that is, you have to get to know your targeted audience, so as to respond to what they expect to find in your plan.
Supposedly, you know all the ins and outs of your business. The part you should learn about is your audience. How many types of readers can a business plan have? What does the audience expect to find in a business plan?
Usually, a company has more versions of a business plan, according to the use managers put it to. There is no fundamental difference between versions, but their stage of completion. The starting point when writing a business plan must be thedraft of the plan structure or the so – called miniplan — here the main directions are drawn in rough lines. It is an abridged version of the full-length plan, dealing in short with all the aspects of the plan. It will be used as a basis for more elaborate versions. It can be used as a tool for testing the business concept or the interest of an eventual investor. It cannot be used as a replacement for the whole business plan.
Secondly, you have to write working versions of the plan such as internal plan, operations plan, strategic plan, in these plans the structure gets a complete form dealing especially with the concrete aspects of the business — marketing, product planning, financial part, forecasts, milestones, assignments — and less with the part of presentation. It is used as an internal tool for control and analysis. This type of plan cannot replace a formal business plan either.
Finally, there is the formal plan or presentation plan, a plan that will be used for company presentation to external partners. This is the version of the plan that should put your business in the most appealing light possible.
Presently, it is essential for the formal plan to be available also in electronic format,so it may come at hand for computer-supported presentations or electronic data transmission.
The presentation plan is the most complete one, the most professional-looking one, the one that should be treated with all the attention and taking into consideration all aspects, from spelling and formatting to covering, in an exhaustive manner, all aspects of interest in a business by “clothing” everything in the most valuable “garment” you dispose of. Presentation plans might have several versions targeted differently.
- start-up plans for opening a business. They are built on the standard pattern, might be bank-directed when applying for a loan.
- growth plans — usually imply investment, so are investor-directed or bank-directed.
- feasibility plans, proving that a business is worth pursuing.
Writing Business Plans that Result