Small Business and Entrepreneurship
Business Plans

What are some tips for improving the presentation and layout of a business plan?

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2007-12-26 22:54:16
2007-12-26 22:54:16

Once your business plan has been drafted, you should carefully review its presentation. Nobody wants to read a business plan that looks like it was written by a five year old. It is important that your business plan conveys a professional, yet subtle image. * Once the plan has been finalized, it is important that you inspect for proper grammar and put it through a spell check. * Choose easy to read fonts and sizes. Some of the more common choices are Times New Roman in 11 or Arial in 10. * Don't be afraid to use some color, just don't go overboard by choosing colors that are too flashy. * Print on only one side of a page. * For easy reference, include page numbers and a table of contents. * Add an appealing cover page that includes an image of your product or service, your business logo, the title of the document and contact information. * If the plan is longer than 35 or 40 pages, consider dividing it into two or three volumes, if necessary. * When binding your business plan, check to make sure that all pages can be turned easily and that once turned, they lie flat. As a final tip, present your plan to a few trusted advisors or business associates for a review. Smile and use their suggestions or criticism as a way to improve upon your plan. Final note: Financials often do not format well because of the volume of information. I generally include condensed financials and occasionally limited detail pages where necessary. I always have a soft copy of the financials with me at all times if there is a lot of detail that drives the summaries. That way the number crunchers can have a copy to tear apart if they want to. A word of caution though, don't give all the info out unless you are confident the investor is serious. If not, then they don't need more than what I printed.

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