planning

The Executive Summary: Write It for Whomever Will Read it.

by Tim Berry

Let’s take a couple of real-world cases. First, the executive summary for a formal business plan, which will be used in a venture competition or as a tool for seeking outside investment. Second, the executive summary for a bank, as part of a loan document. Third, the executive summary for internal use, for employees, or... Read more »

planning

How To Write An Executive Summary

by Tim Berry

Your executive summary is the doorway to your business plan—after looking it over, your prospective investor is either going to throw your business plan away or keep reading, so you'd better get it right. We'll show you how to write an executive summary that sets your business plan apart from the stack. Read more »

Your business plan on a napkin

by Noah Parsons

Women 2.0 has a great concept for a business plan competition: the business plan must fit on a 5×5 napkin. I love this for a few reasons: First, this contest forces contestants to focus on their elevator pitch and executive summary which are arguably the most important parts of a business plan. Requiring a focus... Read more »

funding

The Perfect Pitch

by Noah Parsons

 You may have a winning business plan, but that doesn’t mean anything unless you are able to perfect the art of pitching your idea. Your pitch is your opportunity to get your audience interested in your idea and your business. No one is going to read your business plan unless they find your pitch interesting,... Read more »

planning

The Art of the Executive Summary

by Noah Parsons

Great post over at Guy Kawasaki’s blog on The Art of the Executive Summary. We’ve recently been reading a lot of business plans for the spring business plan competition season and it’s depressing how many terrible executive summaries are out there. Here are some of the common pitfalls: 1. The language barrier: Many plans assume... Read more »