When you work on your business plan, it is smart to take a break every so often and make a mental picture of what you are doing.
When you have finished the first draft of your business plan, you should ask yourself the following questions:
1 Is your Executive Summary sensational?
2 Is your business a perfect fit for your Executive team?
3 Will this business plan appeal to the average experienced investor?
1 Get Them at Hello
You only have sixty seconds to get their attention via writing. That is the amount of time that the average investor will spend to read page one of your business plan. After this time, they will either continue reading the rest of your plan, or chunk it into the trash can.
Page one of your Executive Summary is a representation of those sixty seconds. Even though it is the last section of the business plan sequence, the Executive Summary is the one opportunity that you will get to lure investors into gobbling up the entire business plan. It has to have the most persuasive, most spellbinding points of your plan.
All good Executive Summaries cover the company’s product or service. It also details the market and the important background of your Executive team.
To get them at hello in the Executive Summary, you will have to dumb down some of the points that are covered in the rest of your business plan, but that isn’t a bad thing. As long as it gets the attention of your potential investor, your Executive Summary can be considered successful. The investors can get the related details in the other sections of your business plan.
2 Describe in Detail How Your Executive Team is Excellent for the Job
Having years of experience really matters, but not in the same way that having relevant experience matters. Your Executive team has to be specifically qualified to handle the everyday and long term management of your business. This will be emphasized in the Company Analysis, Operations Plan and the Management Team areas of your business plan.
For instance, your executive team will be seen as more credible if the members of the team are experienced in beginning and effectively maintaining start up businesses. Every member of the team has to have the experience that he is assigned to do within the business. It is even better if your Executive team has experience working with brands that are recognized. If you do not have a complete Executive team to fulfil the company’s needs, explain how and when you will employ the right people for your team.
3 Get On the Inside of the Investor’s Mind
Suitable investors have a gift for quickly picking out a venture based upon a mental checklist that has become very familiar to them through the years. Investors must be able to
- At a glance, understand what your company’s product and services are all about.
- Envision that there is a huge growing demand for your company’s product or service
- See how your business creates barriers to entry that puts your company ahead of the rest
- Be confident that your Executive team is suitable for your company
- Confirm that you have a realistic financial forecast for your company
- See that you have at least one and possibly many different exit plans for your investors