When venture capitalists are asked what they consider most carefully when deciding whether or not to fund a new venture, they consistently respond: “We are most concerned with the quality of the management team and the quality of the business plan.”
The business plan is an important component of a business start-up. It forces the business owner and his/her management team to reflect seriously on the goals of their venture and the steps necessary to launch and maintain it successfully. The very act of constructing a business plan offers an important learning experience to the business owner, because it requires him/her to take a comprehensive view of all aspects of the new venture: organizational, financial, marketing/sales, legal, operational, and IT.
Outside investors find the business plan to be important because it offers them a revealing picture of how the new venture will be organized and what it will achieve. Of equal importance, the business plan enables them to determine how effective the owner and his/her management team will be in launching and maintaining the venture. If the business plan is poorly written, inconsistent, and unrealistic, then the investors will not fund the venture, because they know that it will likely fail. If you cannot write a compelling business plan, then it is unlikely that you will be able to establish a viable business. On the other hand, a wellcrafted, compelling, and realistic business clan suggests that the owner and his/her management team know what they are doing.
This assignment has you put together a short business plan. In constructing it, follow the outline provided later in this guide. As you organize and write it, keep reminding yourself that the point of the document is to force you to think through the most significant issues needed to launch and maintain the business successfully, and to convince investors to provide you with funds because you have a good money-making idea...
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