Business Plans

Often the first act of entrepreneurship is formalizing a business plan for a prospective company. Business plans, which serve as something of a roadmap for how a founder will turn an idea into a full-fledged business, typically include information like an executive summary, a market analysis and financial projections.

Business plans can be vital for entrepreneurs and business owners interested in lining up a bank loan or attracting other stakeholders such as investors. And though a plan may change over time, entrepreneurs and owners often say the process of mapping out how a company will operate and who its customers will be is invaluable.

Still, as the lean startup trend has taken root in recent years, debate has arisen over whether entrepreneurs actually need business plans. Many investors and others within the entrepreneurial community suggest that in a startup, time is of the essence. And since a business plan -- and often the business itself -- will surely change anyway and it might be of little use to put in the effort. According to some, it's better to simply go and do, and then based on an owner's progress, raise funding later, should that be necessary. 

Today's Most Read

News and Articles About Business Plans

5 Questions to Ask About Your Financial Model to Add Real Value To Your Startup
Finance

5 Questions to Ask About Your Financial Model to Add Real Value To Your Startup

For maximum value with the least effort, focus on only the "what ifs" that are the highest priority in your mind for your own startup.
Martin Zwilling
Add This Dimension to a Traditional Business Analysis for a Fuller Marketing Plan
Marketing

Add This Dimension to a Traditional Business Analysis for a Fuller Marketing Plan

Typically, you look at strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats from a product perspective. Here's what you should also be doing.
Jim Joseph
How to Use Your Business Plan as a Benchmark for Performance
Business Plans

How to Use Your Business Plan as a Benchmark for Performance

Don't just file your business plan away in a drawer once you've launched. Instead, use it to keep tabs on how you're doing.
The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.
4 Reasons Why Nobody Can Write Your Business Plan Better Than You
Business Plans

4 Reasons Why Nobody Can Write Your Business Plan Better Than You

Consultants and editors can polish your plan but only you can infuse it with the passion that drives your dream.
John Boitnott
Update Your Business Plan to Renew Your Drive and Focus
Business Plans

Update Your Business Plan to Renew Your Drive and Focus

See why giving this key document an occasional overhaul is a must-do exercise for every company owner.
Moe Kittaneh
Stop Worrying About Everyone Stealing Your Idea
Business Ideas

Stop Worrying About Everyone Stealing Your Idea

Just like shark attacks are extremely rare, so is getting your ideas stolen.
Jessica Alter
10 Tips for Creating a Winning Business Plan in PowerPoint
Business Plans

10 Tips for Creating a Winning Business Plan in PowerPoint

If you're presenting your business plan in PowerPoint format, read this first.
The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.
Skip the Boring Business Plan. Focus on This Strategy Instead.
Business Plans

Skip the Boring Business Plan. Focus on This Strategy Instead.

Here's a simpler, less time intensive approach that offers more flexibility than the traditional business plan.
Cache Merrill
10 Questions to Answer When Writing Your Mission Statement
Starting a Business

10 Questions to Answer When Writing Your Mission Statement

Read this to see what your mission statement should address and how to put it all together.
The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.
6 Strategies for Presenting Your Business Plan
Business Plans

6 Strategies for Presenting Your Business Plan

When you're ready to approach people with your finished business plan, these six strategies will help you achieve the results you want.
The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.
Pro Tips for Writing About Your Cash Flow in Your Business Plan
Business Plans

Pro Tips for Writing About Your Cash Flow in Your Business Plan

Get the lowdown on how to prepare the cash flow section of your business plan
The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.
3 Ways Launching a Startup Is as Tough as Playing for the NFL
NFL Players Inc.

3 Ways Launching a Startup Is as Tough as Playing for the NFL

You don't endure the same physical beating in business as in pro football but the demands to perform and the long odds of success are similar.
Hunter Hillenmeyer
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Expert Advice: 5 Questions That Create a Strong Management Section for Your Business Plan
Business Plans

Expert Advice: 5 Questions That Create a Strong Management Section for Your Business Plan

A business plan pro reveals his best tips for developing a management section that shows readers exactly why your business will succeed.
The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.
Show Your Competitive Edge Without Knocking Your Rivals
Business Plans

Show Your Competitive Edge Without Knocking Your Rivals

Do more than down your rivals. This video shows you how to stand apart using your merits.
The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.