In Writing a Business Plan, Tell a Compelling Story in Description

When writing a business plan, you need to tell a compelling story that will draw in your readers (bankers, investors, potential employees), especially in this section that talks about your business and its location.

You need to paint a picture or a series of pictures about who you are, what you do, why you do it. You must give the reader a good idea about who your customers are and why they do business with you. What do you offer them that is different, exciting, new? In fact, what is different, exciting and new about you? Anything? Get it into this section. You must tell the reader how you operate your company. Where will you operate your business and why. The most compelling part of this picture is how you intend to profit and grow your business. That, as they say, is truly the bottom line!

When writing a business plan, begin this section on the Description/Location of the Business with your Mission Statement, which is a statement that tells the reader why your company is here; why it exists. Click here to go to Mission Statement Page.

Next, create your Vision Statement. Your Vision Statement, unlike your Mission Statement, is a big, bold picture of your firm’s future. Click here to go to Vision Statement Page.

If you would like to when writing a business plan (and it is not absolutely necessary), follow the Mission and Vision Statement with a Values Statement. A Values Statement talks about your core beliefs and core values. This statement needs to be constructed in a way that does not offend or put off anyone who might hold different beliefs than you. For example, you might wish to talk about how your business leaves the planet a greener place to live due to certain actions that you take or perhaps how you donate $.05 out of every dollar of profit to a children’s fund or another worthy charity.

Writing a Business Plan

Include your goals and objectives in this section of your business plan but keep those goals real, positive and growth oriented. For example, if you will start a coffee bar, for your goals and objectives, don’t declare that you will outpace Startbucks in number of outlets and volume in 10 years. That just looks silly to a hard-eyed banker or potential investor. Come up with doable, real goals that you can reach in the next five to 10 years by s-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g.

When you paint the picture about your goals and objectives, draw an accurate picture with your own “GPS” so that those reading this plan fully understand how you intend to get from Point A to Point B. Let’s say, for example, that you are quite handy remodeling houses and spotting real estate bargains. You develop a business plan to purchase aging but elegant mansions in interesting markets to fix them up to modern code standards and then market them as bed and breakfast facilities. Your concept is the start with one mansion, get it up and running, sell off half the investment to investors and use the newly raised money to buy the next aging mansion and so on. You will continue to replicate this business strategy. In this case, lenders and investors can get a good handle on what you are doing and how you are doing it. It is best that lenders and investors need to understand your business concept at this level. What would be very exciting in the case of this remodeler would be if he or she already had one property up and running and successful. That would get people’s attention (and money).

Detail in this section where you will run your business with as much information as possible about your offices or building.

Create a brief history of the company, if it has been in business for awhile. Don’t bore everyone with what you have been doing since college and how this business came to be, except if it is relevant.

List everyone involved in the company. Give some details of their history and include a resume in the Appendix Section of the business plan document. In the case of the above-mentioned remodeler, lenders and investors would be extremely interested to learn that he or she has had experience operating successful bed and breakfasts in the past.

REMINDER: This section has to engage the reader and the reader MUST come away with a strong idea of how the business operates, why it will make a profit and why it will grow. As you write this section, aim for this response from your reader: “This is a great idea, how can I get in on the ground floor as an investor or lender?” If you get that response, you have told a compelling story indeed!

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