Chapter 1

Writing a Business Plan

In This Chapter

  • Recognizing the value of a business plan
  • Understanding what goes into a plan
  • Creating a map for your business
  • Getting your message to your plan's audience
  • Setting your business time frame and milestones

The fact that you're reading this chapter means the task of writing a business plan has made it onto your to-do list. That's a big step in the right direction. Now come the questions. What exactly is business planning? What should it include? Where do you start the process of writing your business plan?

This chapter should confirm your hunch that business planning is essential — when you start your business and at every growth stage along the way. It helps you think about the audience for your plan, what its key components should be, and roughly how long you'll need to put it together.

Writing a business plan is not exactly a breeze. It takes time and thought. This chapter provides a quick and easy overview to get you oriented and on your way to business-planning success.

Selling Yourself on the Importance of Planning

Nearly all business experts agree on one thing: the importance of drafting a business plan. Yet plenty of companies plunge into the competitive arena without a formal plan. Why? Plenty of excuses have posed as reasons. A lot of new businesses are carried away and figure their passion and optimism are enough to build a successful company. Others say they were just too busy to develop a formal business plan. But operating ...

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