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5 Steps to Writing a Business Plan

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    Writing a business plan can be daunting, especially if you are using it to help secure start-up capitol from lenders and investors. When coming up with your business plan, make sure to remember that you do not have to follow any strict guidelines. Some business plan outlines may have areas that do not show off your proposed business’s strongest potential and those should be cut. A great business plan keeps things simple while trying to keep the costs low, which includes costs of both money and time.

    1) Vision
    This is probably the most important part of any business plan; the executive summary outlines what your business is and why it will be successful. It specifies your end goal—whether that is to solve a problem or fulfill a desire. Here is where you should gush about your idea. Really sell it.
    2) Mission
    Go into detail about the problems your business will solve and the reason why your company exists. Outline your target consumers and why your business will succeed such as your or a team member’s past experience. Perhaps you found the perfect location. If it will help your business succeed, mention it.
    3) Define Objectives
    Here is where you outline the goals needed to achieve your mission and vision. These can be growth expectations and expected monetary gains.
    4) Basic Strategies
    This is a business management plan. Here you should define how you will achieve your objectives by showing how your company will be structured and who will run it. What unique keys do you have that will contribute to the success of your small business? You should get pretty detailed here. If you have employees already, discuss their experience. If you already have a company and just need money capitol to grow, talk about the ways you are already successful and how your company already runs smoothly.
    5) Financial Projections
    Outline your financial projections. Your end goal of the entire business plan is to convince lenders that your business will be a financial success. This can include prospective financial outlooks for the next five years. Include any charts or graphs you have that already show growth.

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