Whether you’re pitching a new project at your company or seeking funds for a start-up, you’ll need to develop a persuasive business case if you want your idea to go anywhere.

Your primary goal is to help people decide whether to invest resources in your idea. If you’re making a case for a project or initiative within an organization, you’re not starting in a vacuum. You have insight into your company’s strategic priorities, and you probably know the people you’re pitching to. But you’ve still got plenty of work to do. Your audience—the leaders of your unit or company—will expect you to put yourself in their shoes. (What are their chief concerns? How does your project address them?) They’ll also expect a thoughtful analysis of the ...

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