There are two basic reasons for preparing an extensive business plan. First, it requires the entrepreneur to thoroughly investigate the factors that will have a bearing on the success of the business. Second, it will enhance the ability of the entrepreneur to secure financing by providing an organized summary of the venture for lenders and investors. It also provides insight into the entrepreneur’s ability to define and develop strategies for critical areas of the business.
The following outline will help you assemble the facts that are essential to good business planning. Complete your business plan using the accompanying outline to ensure that the necessary details are included. Keep in mind that thoroughness, clarity, and rationality of the plan are all factors that will play key roles in successfully financing, starting, and operating your business. Because these guidelines were written to cover a variety of possible businesses, rigid adherence to them is not possible or even desirable for all businesses. Not all parts of all sections will be necessary for each individual’s business plan.
Include the following in your Business Plan:
Individuals or entities doing business for profit under a name different from the owners(s) full name(s) must file a Fictitious Name Statement with the County Recorder – Clerks Office where the business will be conducted. Corporations, LLCs, LLP’s, and limited partnerships register an assumed name as part of their business filings with the Wisconsin Secretary of State.
For an existing business, balance sheets and income statements for the current and previous three years should be provided. After you have completed preparation of the financial exhibits, briefly highlight the important conclusions that can be drawn. Finally, explain all of your assumptions and the sources of your data.
This checklist is a good starting point for you as you begin your business. It is intended as a springboard for your business development and is in no way meant to be a substitute for professional advice or counsel. For further information about starting a business, contact your local SBDC by Clicking Here for a free confidential consulting session or for their next "First Step" business course.
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