We often ask business owners to include a business plan when they apply for bank finance. Consider that, in the same way as you would test-drive a vehicle before purchasing it, we need information about your company before we partner with you.
Business/Industry Overview contains an overview of the industry and how your business will compete in the sector. Describe the overall nature of the industry, including sales and other statistics. Include trends and demographic, economic, cultural, and governmental influences. Describe your business and how it fits into the industry. Describe the existing competition. Describe what area(s) of the market you will target and what unique, improved or lower cost services you will offer.
Executive Summary. The executive summary goes near the beginning of the plan but is written last. It should provide a short, concise and optimistic overview of your business that captures the readers attention and gives them an interest in learning more about it. The executive summary should be no more than 2 pages long, with brief summaries of other sections of the plan.
Operating Plan. The operating plan outlines the physical requirements of your business, such as office, warehouse, or retail space, equipment, inventory and supply needs, labor, etc. For a one-person, home-based consulting business the operating plan will be short and simple, but for a business such as a restaurant or manufacturer that requires custom facilities, supply chains, specialized equipment, and multiple employees, the operating plan needs to be much more detailed.
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