Developing A Business Plan

Developing a business plan is a critical step in setting up, growing or developing your business. Below is a sample outline of key elements to include when preparing your plan.

I.The Business Overview

A. Description of Business
B. Marketing
C. Competition
D. Operating procedures
E. Personnel
F. Business insurance

II. Financial Data

A. Loan applications
B. Capital equipment and supply list
C. Balance sheet
D. Breakeven analysis
E. Pro-forma income projections (profit & loss statements)
      a. Three-year summary
      b. Detail by month, first year
      c. Detail by quarters, second and third years
      d. Assumptions upon which projections were based
F. Pro-forma cash flow

III. Supporting Documents

A. Tax returns of principals for last three years Personal financial statement (all banks have these forms)
B. For franchised businesses, a copy of franchise contract and all supporting documents provided by the franchisor
C. Copy of proposed lease or purchase agreement for building space
D. Copy of licenses and other legal documents
E. Copy of resumes of all principals
F. Copies of letters of intent from suppliers, etc.

One of the best ways to learn about writing a business plan is to study the plans of established businesses in your industry.

Sample Business Plans from SBA and Plato Software

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