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Entrepreneurship. 7. Writing an Effective Business Plan: Crafting a Roadmap to Success. “There is real magic in enthusiasm. It spells the difference between mediocrity and accomplishment.” --Norman Vincent Peale, 1961. Business Plan.

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Entrepreneurship

7

Writing an Effective Business Plan: Crafting a Roadmap to Success


“There is real magic in enthusiasm. It spells the difference between mediocrity and accomplishment.”

--Norman Vincent Peale, 1961


Business Plan

  • A formal, written expression of the entrepreneur’s vision for converting ideas into a profitable, going business

  • The entry card for serious consideration by venture capitalists, banks, and other sources of funding


A Living Document

  • A business plan changes often as a new business develops.

  • Do just enough business planning to get the new company started.

  • Refine the plan with information gathered from running the new venture.


Model of SuccessfulBusiness Planning

Prepare a

relatively

simple plan

Start the

business

Refine the

business plan

Continue to

grow the

business


Business Plan Components

  • What is the basic idea?

  • Why is the new product appealing—and to whom?

  • How will the idea be realized?

  • Who are the entrepreneurs?

  • How much funding is needed? What type of funding? How will it be used? How will you realize a return?


A Successful Plan

  • A serious document prepared by serious people

  • Orderly

  • Succinct

  • Persuasive


Executive Summary

  • Your elevator pitch

  • Provides a brief, clear, and persuasive overview of the new venture

  • Target 2 to 3 pages


Background and purpose

Marketing

Competition

Development, production, and location

Management

Financial information

Risk factors

Harvest or exit

Scheduling and milestones

Appendices

Business Plan Sections


Background, Product, and Purpose

  • What is the nature of the idea driving your company and how did it arise?

  • What does the product have to offer?

  • What is the basic nature of the company?

  • What is the company’s mission?


Market Analysis

  • What have you done to identify the market?

  • How large is the market?

  • How will products or services be promoted?

  • What do you know about competing products and companies?

  • How will the product or service be priced?


Development, Production, and Location

  • Where are the products or services in the development process?

  • What are the projected costs and timetable for making the product or delivering the service?

  • What steps have been taken to assure quality and safety?


Management Team

  • Do team members have the experience, expertise, skills, and personal characteristics needed?

  • Do team members having good working relationships?


Financial Plans and Projections

  • Proforma balance sheet

  • Proforma income statement

  • Cash flow statement

  • Break-even analysis


Critical Risks

  • Price cutting by competitors

  • Unforeseen industry trends

  • Sales projections not achieved

  • Costs exceed estimates

  • Schedules not met

  • Difficulties raising financing

  • Unforeseen trends


Harvest and Exit

  • Management succession

  • Exit strategies


Formal incorporation

Completion of design

Completion of prototypes

Hiring of initial personnel

Product displays

Agreements

Moving into production

Receipt of orders

First sales

Profitability

Scheduling and Milestones


The Intangibles

  • The extra “something”

  • Pay attention to organization, clarity, word choice, and style

  • Have good writers read your plan

  • Revise according to their suggestions


Seven Deadly Sins

  • Plan is poorly prepared

  • Plan looks too slick

  • Executive summary is too long

  • Development stage of product is unclear

  • Fails to answer “Why would anyone ever want to buy one?”

  • Doesn’t state management qualifications

  • Financial projections are wishful thinking


The Presentation

  • Remember: This is important!

  • Prepare, prepare, prepare

  • Choose content carefully

  • Persuade, don’t overwhelm

  • Show enthusiasm tempered with reality

  • Rehearse

  • Don’t overlook the basics

  • Respond positively to questions


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