Essentials of business plan – Part I


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business plan A business plan is a written summary and guide to starting and running a business. A well-written plan creates a blueprint for success and can help entrepreneurs obtain financing, create strategic plans, follow marketing and sales plans. For many people, a business plan is the first step in the process of deciding whether to start a business – determining if the plan “fails on paper” first can help prospective business owners avoid costly investments.

A good business plan:

  • Requires objective analysis and critical thinking – what seemed like a good idea can, under mature reflection, be exposed as a business lacking viability due to excess competition, a lack of sufficient funding, etc.
  • Serves as a guide to operations for the first months and even years, creating a management blueprint.
  • Communicates the company’s purpose and vision, management responsibilities, personnel requirements, marketing plans, and competitive environment.
  • Creates the foundation of a financing proposal for investors, lenders, etc.

While each business plan is unique, all business plans share a few common elements. The following are some of the key components of a well-crafted business plan.

Executive Summary

The Executive Summary (sometimes called a Vision Statement) is a brief outline of the company’s purpose and goals. While it can be tough to fit on one or two pages, a good summary includes:

  • Brief description of products and services
  • Business objectives
  • The market space the business will inhabit
  • Justification for viability (including a brief look at competition and competitive advantage)
  • Growth potential
  • Funding requirements

For many people, the Executive Summary is the make-or-break section of a business plan. Companies solve customer’s problems; if the Summary cannot clearly describe how the business will solve a particular problem – and profit by doing so – in one or two pages, then it is very possible the opportunity does not exist… or the plan to take advantage of the opportunity has not been well developed.

In effect, an Executive Summary is where the sizzle must meet the steak.

***Note to readers: This is a four part series, wherein we will highlight every aspect of business plan ***

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Satinder Panesar
Entrepreneur & founder of GWT systems pvt ltd. Satinder's pragmatic approach helped the company not only to survive the worst IT crises but also managed to increase the clientÈle. Satinder is currently working with green companies, around the world, and is promoting Green computing.


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